RTGNU must live up to its mandate or lose its legitimacy

Hon. Oyet Nathaniel Pierino | Photo: Courtesy

Opinion | By Hon. Oyet Nathaniel Pierino

Opinion —The statements by Troika, EU and IGAD Special Envoy on the occasion of One Year Anniversary of Transitional Period are “hollow” and fall sort of the realities of Implementation of the Peace Agreement.

I know the international community cannot and will never speak for us. They are bound by the prima facie notion and principles of the “sovereign equality of states” and “no interference in the internal matters of other states” etc. The statements by Troika, EU and IGAD only serve to embolden the peace spoilers and particularly elements within ITGNU that have been sabotaging the peace process.

The reality on the ground which we should and shall continue to speak of and alert the world, and friends of South Sudan is that the Peace Implementation has stalled. The assertion that the Peace Agreement is being implemented is a sheer blackmail and a flatter. There is No Political Will to implement the Agreement and deliberate refusal to commit funds for implementation for the last 29 months has severely stifled the Peace Agreement.

Even the formation of RTGNU is not complete at the national and state level after one year long; the ITGNU have been dragging their feet on the Agreement for the last one year,

The Pre Transitional Tasks which had been occasioning perpetual extension for six months and 100 days and later moved to the transitional period have not been touched during the first one year of the transitional period. The parties have been attempting to form a government, of which they have not yet completed the same. What do we have to show during the twelve months of Transitional Period other than attempting to form a government?

Where are the forces we have unified after 29 months; the forces continue to languish under despicable conditions in the cantonments and training centers for the last 2 years. Others have died, or deserted the training centers. Few are only left. This is the master strategy of the ITGNU and group within the country that do not want to implement the Agreement.

The peace spoilers have been succeeding for the last 29 months; they have displayed the highest level of lack of political will, refused to commit funds to implement the Agreement.

There is no any credible justification that South Sudan lack resources to fund the peace Process. The last fund for implementation was released in November of 2019 and it was a peanut. We could have understood that during the Pre Transitional Period it was ITGNU running the government single handedly and therefore may fail to release funds.

How could the government of the Peace Agreement (the RTGNU) composed of parties to the Agreement fails to release funds required to implement the Agreement for the last one year and during the Transitional Period?

Besides, we have been witnessing clear violations of the Peace Agreement by the ITGNU and the SSPDF, namely;

• Failure to adhere to the implementation matrix;

• b) The continuous violation of Permanent Ceasefire including attacks on cantonment sites and training centers themselves;

• c) Refusal to appoint the Governor of Upper Nile;

• d) Violations of the terms of Transitional Constitution 2011 as amended; the President has decided to retain the powers awarded to him under the previus Constitution;

• e) The ongoing parallel training of forces by the elements within the SSPDF around the country; a big concern. Meaning this group is preparing for a war; a violation of the terms of Cessation of Hostilities Agreement;

• f) The encouragement of and breakdown of parties to the Agreement just to mention few;

• g) Reluctance by ITGNU to take part in the Permanent Constitution Making Process displays bad faith in this process;

• h) Refusal to submit names of nominees to the TNLA to NCAC for appointments by the President;

The Peace Agreement is at a crossroad, between “success and collapse”, the security arrangement is over stressed; the forces in the Cantonment and Training Centers are going without food, medicine and shelter etc. Any delay to graduate, unify and deploy these forces may lead to total breakdown of Transitional Security Arrangements, the Permanent Ceasefire and the Agreement altogether;

If RTGNU shall not implement the Agreement as timely as possible it shall forfeit its legitimacy; the forces in Cantonment and training centers that have been waiting to implement Security Arrangement will completely disperse and close those camps. And further delay to implement the Agreement will lead to loss of confidence in the Government of the day.


The writer is a senior member of the SPLM-IO and representative at the National Amendment Committee – a mechanism responsible for overseeing and incorporating the R-ARCSS into the permanent constitution.


The views expressed in this “Opinion Section” belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of The South Sudan Herald. Should you wish to submit your opinion piece or analysis, kindly contact us at: thessherald@gmail.com

Tigray community hails UN, S. Sudan for saving their sons from “death-trap”

Ethiopian contingent serving under the mandate of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan |Photo: Courtesy

Members of the Tigray community in the United States issued a brief statement this evening, commending the South Sudanese authorities and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees for protecting their sons from what they described as a premeditated “death trap” planned by the Abiy administration.

“We appreciate the Republic of South Sudan and UNHCR for providing protection to our sons after the Ethiopian government had premeditated a “death trap” against them as part of the ongoing Genocide in the Tigray region,” the diaspora community lauded South Sudan in a brief statement extended to Thessherald.

On Monday, a bitter fist fight ensued at Juba International Airport after 15 members of the Ethiopian contingent refused to board a plane, citing fear for their lives.

The brief fighting between the Ethiopian troops serving under the mandate of the United Nations Mission has been confirmed by a top UN official.

“This morning, 169 members of the Ethiopian contingent were due to rotate out of Juba and (be) replaced by fresh contingents, a part of a normal rotation,” said UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric during his daily press conference.

“We’re trying to get the details, but I do understand about 15 members of the contingent chose not to board the flight at the Juba airport… They’ve asked to stay,” he said, adding that “any person in need of international protection has the right to seek asylum.”

“They are receiving support from the South Sudanese Ministry of Refugee Affairs,” Dujarric continued, and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) is “aware” of the situation and in contact with South Sudanese authorities.

Taban’s loyalists say they’re being left out from state appointments

Officials representing SPLM-IO (IG) feel left out | Courtesy

February 23rd, Taban-led group has lodged a formal complaint against South Sudan’s President Salva Mayardit over what they termed as “exclusion” from the ongoing appointments of state officials.

“Your Excellency issued Decree No:11, 12, 13, 14 establishing the State Government of Central Equatoria, Northern Bhar el Gazal, Unity and Warrap States respectively. We are indeed deeply shocked and dismayed because the Decree omitted the nominees of the former SPLM/A-IO led by Gen. Taban Deng Gai despite the fact that we are part of ITGONU as clearly stipulated in Article 1.3.1 of the R- ARCSS 2018,” said former SPLM-IO officials in a letter signed by 40 officials.

The group expressed concerns that if they are to miss appointments from other pending states, it means that they will be excluded from the unity government forever.

“Our serious fear is that if the bad development in these states is copied by the other states, then our group will be completely excluded from participation in the State and local governments in the country.”

“We are also deeply concerned with the proposal of the acting Secretary General of SPLM which was submitted to you concerning the expansion and reconstitution of the National Legislature, Her proposal allocates:

• 165 seats for those elected to Juba NLA in 2010 to be maintained.

• 91 seats for those elected to the Legislative Assembly in Khartoum in 2010 to be maintained.

• 47 Presidential appointees to the NLA in 2011 to be maintained.

“Thus the total number of seats for the SPLM alone will be 303 out of 332 leaving only 29 seats for the other parties in ITGONU. Furthermore out of the 29 seats, ten will be allocated to some elected members in 2010 leaving only 19 seats for those who were appointed in 2016. If her formula is followed, it means that the majority of the 68 Presidential appointees in 2016 as a result of the 2015 ARCSS will have been excluded.”

“Consequently the 50members of the former SPLM/A-I0 led by Gen. Taban Deng Gai will have been wickedly excluded. Your Excellency, our humble prayer to you is to maintain the unity of our people and parties which have been historically supporting you since the 2016 crisis by distributing the 332 seats fairly.”

Kiir faces lawsuit over unlawful appointments of state officials

President Salva Kiir Mayardit | Photo: File

A group of lawyers has filed a lawsuit against President Kiir Salva Mayardit, accusing him of violating the constitution by unconstitutionally appointing state officials .

Over the past few days, President Kiir has reconstituted and appointed state officials including ministers, advisors, and chairpersons of independent commissions in a presidential decree, a move considered as illegal by observers and activists.

“The concern that comes with the appointment is the distinction between the power of the governor and the powers of the presidency being exercise by the president himself,” Advocate Philip Anyang said, on behalf of the layers.

The group said in a statement that the move taken by Kiir is illegal and conflicts with the provisions of the peace agreement, which mandates the president to appoint ministers at the national level only.

“The agreement gives the president powers to appoint national ministers, governors and structures at the national level only. All the state appointment should be handled and done by the governors.”

On Monday, the Minister of Information, Michael Makuei Lueth noted that since the agreement has not been incorporated into the South Sudan Constitution, the president has the right to appoint officials at the local level.

“The state constitution has not yet been incorporated into the agreement; and as such, this idea of power-sharing or responsibility-sharing is not in their (states) current constitutions,” Makuei stated.

WHO donates medical kits for flood-affected communities in Jonglei

Health workers offloading emergency medical kits donated by the World Health Organization |Photo: WHO

The World Health Organization (WHO) has donated sets of emergency medical kits to its partner agencies operating in Jonglei, one of the hardest-hit states in the country.

The medical assistance was channeled through Christian Mission for Development (CMD), Medicair South Sudan, and Health Action for Africa running Health Cluster in Manyo, Canal Piji and Bor counties.

Since last year, nearly 20,000 people have been affected and displaced to neighboring areas due to worst flooding.

The affected people are in urgent need of food, livelihood support, emergency shelter as well as non-food items (ES/NFI), water, sanitation and hygiene, health and protection services.

According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), more than 2. 7 million people are expected to face severe food insecurity in the next few months, posing an alarming situation in a country still facing other challenges.

IGAD commends S. Sudan’s contribution to regional peace

IGAD Special Envoy for South Sudan, Ismail Wais and President Kiir discuss status of the implementation on September 12, 2019.

The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), in a statement, commends South Sudan’s recent offer to settle border-related disputes between Sudan and the Federal Democratic Ethiopia.

Speaking on Monday as the country marked its First Anniversary since the formation of South Sudan’s unity government, the IGAD Special Envoy for South Sudan, Amb. Ismail Wais applauded South Sudan’s role in promoting regional peace and stability.

“IGAD also recognizes and appreciates the significant contribution that South Sudan is making to regional peace and stability by successfully hosting and mediating the Sudan talks as well as by offering to mediate between Ethiopia and Sudan to help peacefully resolve the ongoing border dispute between the two countries. This is one clear indication that besides the people of South Sudan the neighboring countries and the region at large are reaping the fruits of peace in South Sudan.”

Earlier this month, the world’s youngest country offered to calm border tensions between Sudan and neighboring Ethiopia after months of military confrontations.

South Sudan has succeeded in brokering the Juba Peace Agreement between the Sudanese unity government and opposition groups, but failed to restore its own peace.

On the same note, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development, called on the South Sudanese parties to commit to the implementation of the peace agreement.

All in all, the last one year has witnessed a mixed-bag of progresses and delays with regard to the implementation of the R-ARCSS, and it is the right time for the Parties and Stakeholders of the R-ARCSS to take stock of achievements and challenges and have a genuine discussion and dialogue on the way forward.

Troika calls for credible & fair post-transitional elections in South Sudan

President Salva Kiir Mayardit and Vice-President Dr. Riek Machar | Photo: File

The Troika countries, namely the United States, the United Kingdom and Norway issued a press release on Monday during the commemoration of the First Anniversary of the Revitalized Transitional Government of National Unity.

“Today (February 22), marks the one-year anniversary of the formation of the Revitalized Transitional Government of National Unity (RTGoNU). This was a major step toward restoring peace in South Sudan. The Troika welcomes all efforts by the RTGoNU in implementing the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of Conflict in South Sudan (R-ARCSS), most notably the appointment of a unified Cabinet, Governors, and Deputy Governors in all states.”

The members of the Troika welcomed the recent resolution of the Council of Ministers that endorsed the formation of the African Union Hybrid Court for South Sudan.

“The Troika further welcomes the endorsement by the Council of Ministers on January 28 of a roadmap for implementing Chapter 5, including the establishment of the Hybrid Court for South Sudan; the Commission for Truth, Reconciliation and Healing; and the Compensation and Reparations Authority.”

“Much work remains and there is an urgent need to implement R-ARCSS in full. Progress made over the past year has been too slow and too limited. Critically important is the immediate formation of State Governments and the re-constitution of the Transitional National Legislative Assembly and Council of States. Implementation of Transitional Security Arrangements and true security sector reform should commence immediately.”

“The Troika endorses and reiterates the call made by African Union and Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Ambassadors to improve conditions in training centers and accelerate the graduation and deployment of the Necessary Unified Forces. We will continue to work closely with IGAD and the regional guarantors to reach common objectives on the peace process and an agreed roadmap for implementation.”

“The Troika calls for the commencement of the permanent constitution-making process and the start of preparations for peaceful, credible, and inclusive post-transitional elections. There is an urgent need to continue implementation of reforms envisaged in Chapter 4 regarding transparency and accountability, including through the Public Financial Management Oversight Committee.”

The Troika voiced its concern over the ongoing intercommunal violence in different parts of the country.

“We welcome the appointment of three women as Deputy Governors but note with disappointment the failure to ensure 35 percent female representation as stipulated in R-ARCSS. While the national ceasefire has generally held, the level of violence across the country, including conflict caused by defections, is unacceptable.”

“We urge all parties to the Rome process to ensure adherence to the Cessation of Hostilities and pursue political dialogue. We are deeply concerned that violence is exacerbating an already dire humanitarian situation, where 7.2 million people are facing severe levels of food insecurity and more people are in need of assistance than in any year since South Sudan’s independence. We call upon the Government to ensure immediate de-escalation of sub-national conflict and unhindered humanitarian access.”

“We acknowledge the challenges posed by COVID-19 for the implementation of the R-ARCSS and more generally. We welcome efforts by the Government to respond to a new wave of cases. The Troika will continue to work in partnership to respond to this crisis. We look forward to continuing working in close partnership with the RTGoNU to support the full implementation of the R-ARCSS.”

IGAD issues statement on the 1st Anniversary of R-TGoNU formation

IGAD issues a statement on the 1st Anniversary of the formation of unity government | Photo: File

Press Statement

The IGAD Special Envoy for South Sudan, Amb. Ismail Wais (PhD) would like to congratulate the Parties and Stakeholders to the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (R-ARCSS), the people of South Sudan as well as IGAD Member States and the International Community as we mark the first year anniversary of the formation of the Revitalized Transitional Government of National Unity (R-TGoNU) on 22nd February 2020.

A year on, commendable progress has been made particularly in the implementation of governance related tasks under Chapter I of the R-ARCSS considering the confluence of natural calamities that have hit South Sudan ranging from the COVID-19 pandemic, flooding and locust invasion.

Thus far, the Executive, composed of the Presidency and the Council of Ministers, has been formed; the Governors and Deputy Governors of the ten (10) States as well the Chief Administrators of the three (3) Administrative Areas have all been appointed; and agreements have been reached on the structures and allocation of remaining positions at the State and Local Government levels as well as in the three (3) Administrative Areas. The ceasefire is largely holding, which is creating a relatively conducive environment for the overall implementation of the R-ARCSS.

However, despite these encouraging progresses, a year after the commencement of the Transitional Period, some critical Pre-Transitional tasks which were carried over are yet to be completed. The Transitional National Legislative Assembly (TNLA) has not been reconstituted; nomination and appointment of State and Local Government positions, other than the ones referred to hereinabove, are pending; and training and unification of forces is way behind schedule.

With respect to unification of forces, as the recent joint visit by regional Ambassadors, RJMEC and IGAD to Maridi and Rajaf Training Centers revealed, the situation in the camps is deplorable with no adequate food, shelter, water and medicines. Moreover, there seems to be no clear timeline for the graduation of the first batch of Necessary Unified Forces (NUF) forcing many to abandon their camps.
Therefore, no significant development has occurred with regard to Transitional Security Arrangements in the last one (1) year.

Defections and ensuing clashes between some forces is further eroding trust among the Parties and threatening the hard won peace in South Sudan. Cattle raiding and intercommunal conflicts also continue to claim the lives of civilians unabated and are alarmingly becoming more deadly and devastating posing additional threat to the already fragile security situation in the country.

Due to the delay in the implementation of Pre-Transitional tasks, implementation of Transitional Period tasks have either stalled or not commenced at all especially those under Chapters V and VI of the R-ARCSS on Transitional Justice and Permanent Constitution making respectively.

In this regard, IGAD welcomes the recent decision of the South Sudan Council of Ministers authorizing the Minister for Justice and Constitutional Affairs to start preparations for the establishment of Transitional Justice Mechanisms under Chapter V of the R-ARCSS and lauds the Minister’s quick decision and action in establishing a Taskforce to spearhead and coordinate the Ministry’s work in the implementation of Chapters V, VI and judicial reforms under Chapter I.
The humanitarian crisis and food insecurity have been exacerbated by natural and manmade disasters.

According to reports from UNOCHA, in 2021 over 8.3 million people in South Sudan are estimated to be in need of humanitarian assistance, that is hundreds of thousands more from last year. The economy is also severely affected by the cummulative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, plunging of oil prices and soaring inflation.

The ongoing talks between the Government of South Sudan and the non-signatory group, South Sudan Opposition Movements Alliance (SSOMA) under the auspices of the Community of Sant’Egidio have registered encouraging results since January last year, and IGAD hopes that the talks will be concluded with positive outcomes within the shortest time possible.

IGAD also recognizes and appreciates the significant contribution that South Sudan is making to regional peace and stability by successfully hosting and mediating the Sudan talks as well as by offering to mediate between Ethiopia and Sudan to help peacefully resolve the ongoing border dispute between the two countries. This is one clear indication that besides the people of South Sudan the neighboring countries and the region at large are reaping the fruits of peace in South Sudan.

All in all, the last one year has witnessed a mixed-bag of progresses and delays with regard to the implementation of the R-ARCSS, and it is the right time for the Parties and Stakeholders of the R-ARCSS to take stock of achievements and challenges and have a genuine discussion and dialogue on the way forward.

The Parties need to renew their commitment and redouble efforts towards a speedy and full implementation of the RARCSS in letter and spirit, including the adherence of the 35% women representation, within the resources available. In this regard, priority shall be given to unification of forces as that is the backbone of the R-ACRSS.

IGAD and the Office of the IGAD Special Envoy for South Sudan are committed and will continue providing and facilitating political and technical support, within their means and mandate, to the Peace Process in South Sudan, and also call upon the International Partners and Friends of South Sudan to continue and enhance their support towards the implementation of the R-ARCSS.

President Kiir appoints state officials in a presidential decree

South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir has appointed state ministers, advisors and Heads of Independent Commission for Warrap and Unity State, respectively.

For Warrap State, the South Sudanese leader, Kiir, appointed the following officials in a presidential decree aired on SSBC this evening.

State Advisors

  1. Garang Mabil Deng – Advisor for Peace and Security – SPLM/ITGONU
  2. Malong Chan Deng – Advisor for Economic Affairs – National Agenda/ITGONU
  3. Justice Jadala Deng Ring – Advisor for Legal Affairs – SPLM-IO
  4. Akiech Atak Gong – Advisor for Human Rights – SSOA
  5. John Mayen Akon – Advisor for Gender, Child and Social Welfare – National Agenda/ITGONU
    Ministers:
  6. Akech Tong Aleu – Minister of Cabinet Affairs – SPLM/ITGONU
  7. Peter Madol Mangong – Minister of Local Government and Law Enforcement – SPLM-IO
  8. Piol Wuoi Ariath Akot – Minister of Peace Building – SPLM-IO
  9. Kuot Deng Kuot Thiech – Minister of Parliamentary and Legal Affairs – SPLM/ITGONU
  10. Ring Deng Ajing – Minister of Information and Communication – SPLM/ITGONU
  11. Agok Ayar Chieny – Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports – SPLM/ITGONU
  12. Manut Chol Akoon – Minister of Finance and Investment – OPP
  13. Dr. Jong Anthony Deng – Minister of Trade and Industry – SPLM/ITGONU
  14. Kerubino Akech Kuanyin – Minister of Agriculture, Environment and Forestry – SSOA
  15. Juliana Luka Madira – Minister of Animal Resources, Fisheries and Tourism – SPLM-IO
  16. John Deng Madut Majok – Minister of Cooperatives and Rural Development – SSOA
  17. Chuor Aguek Chuor Aguek – Minister of Housing, Lands and Public Utilities – SPLM-IO
  18. Chol Victor Bol – Minister of Roads and Bridges – SPLM/ITGONU
  19. Maluk Lual Wol – Minister of Labour, Public Services and Human Resource Development – SPLM/ITGONU
  20. Abak Yol Madut – Minister of Health – SPLM/ITGONU
  21. Ater Kuei Thiep – Minister of General Education and Instruction – SPLM/ITGONU
  22. Akol Madut Tong Deng – Minister of Gender, Child and Social Welfare – SPLM-IO

Some members of State Commissions:

  1. Dr. Thomas Maduot Majak – Chairperson Anti-corruption Commission – SSOA
  2. Teresa Awien Daal – Deputy Chairperson Anti-corruption Commission – SPLM/ITGONU
  3. Makur Abur Anei – Member Anti-corruption Commission – SPLM-IO
  4. Majok Malok Agok Majar – Deputy Chairperson Relief and Rehabilitation Commission-SPLM-IO
  5. Angelo Madut Majok – Member Relief and Rehabilitation Commission – SSOA
  6. Bona Atem Thuch – Member Relief and Rehabilitation Commission – National Agenda/ITGONU
  7. Benjamin Anyar Mabior – Member Relief and Rehabilitation Commission – SPLM/ITGONU
  8. Riak Madut Angok – Chairperson Human Rights Commission – National Agenda/ITGONU
  9. Abraham Mabior Malith – Deputy Chairperson Human Rights Commission – SSOA
  10. Deng Ater Ngardit Thiep – Member Human Rights Commission – SPLM-IO
  11. Gaetano Nyuol Atem Lok – Member Human Rights Commission – SPLM/ITGONU
  12. William Kuot Kuer – Member Human Rights Commission – SPLM/ITGONU
  13. John Aggrey Lok – Chairperson Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation Commission – SPLM/ITGONU
  14. Diom Deng Cyerdit – Deputy Chairperson Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation Commission – SPLM-IO
  15. Ngang Marol – Member Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation Commission – SPLM/ITGONU
  16. Lual Ater Dut – Member Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation Commission – SSOA
  17. Martin Babuang Kuer – Member Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation Commission – National Agenda/ITGONU

County Commissioners

  1. Victor Wek Koor Aru – Commissioner Gogrial West County – SSOA
  2. Peter Ayom Bol Kuot – Commissioner Gogrial East County – SPLM/ITGONU
  3. Kuol Akoon Kuol – Commissioner Tonj North County – SPLM/ITGONU
  4. John Deng Kok Chan – Commissioner East County – SPLM-IO
  5. Nalco Angor Malang Angor – Commissioner Tonj South County – SPLM/ITGONU
  6. Deng Tong Goch – Commissioner Twic County – SPLM-IO

For Unity State, President Kiir reconstituted and appointed officials at the state level.

State Advisors

  1. Stephen Salam Maluit – Advisor for Peace and Security – SPLM/ITGONU
  2. Tut Gatchuol Kom Dak – Advisor for Economic Affairs – SSOA
  3. Saman Dokta Chuot Nhier – Advisor for Legal Affairs – SPLM/ITGONU
  4. Abraham Dak Lual – Advisor for Human Rights – National Agenda/ITGONU
  5. Joseph Nhial Ruach – Advisor for Gender, Child and Social Welfare – SPLM-IO

State Ministers

  1. Gatluak Tutjel Teny – Minister of Cabinet Affairs – SPLM-IO
  2. Dak Kuach Monykuer – Minister of Local Government and Law Enforcement – SPLM/ITGONU
  3. James Madut Ruai Wich – Minister of Peace Building – SPLM/ITGONU
  4. Tebuon Jany Rial – Minister of Parliamentary and Legal Affairs – SPLM/ITGONU
  5. Gabriel Kuon Makuei – Minister of Information and Communication – SPLM/ITGONU
  6. David Gai Jenuor Nguen – Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports – SPLM/TGONU
  7. Malual Tap Dhieu – Minister of Finance and Investment – SPLM/ITGONU
  8. Anthony Kuoch Liach – Minister of Trade and Industry – SPLM-IO
  9. James Gai Gatduel – Minister of Agriculture, Environment and Forestry – SSOA
  10. James Tungwar Ruach Dhieu – Minister of Animal Resources, Fisheries and Tourism – SPLM-IO
  11. Rebecca Francis Geu – Minister of Cooperatives and Rural Development – SPLM/ITGONU
  12. Lam Tungwar Kueigong – Minister of Housing, Lands and Public Utilities – SPLM/ITGONU
  13. Habiba Luk Gatluak Thon – Minister of Roads and Bridges – SPLM/ITGONU
  14. Nyakuma Abdalla Gai Duop – Minister of Labour, Public Services and Human Resource Development – SPLM-IO
  15. Lam Moses Biel Chan – Minister of Health – OPP
  16. Stephen Tot Chieny – Minister of General Education and Instruction – SPLM-IO
  17. Rose Nyaboth Toch – Minister of Gender, Child and Social Welfare – SPLM/ITGONU

Heads of Independent

  1. Thor Jal Bap – Member Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation Commission – SPLM/ITGONU
  2. Nyajuba Manas Ochuon – Member Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation Commission – SPLM/ITGONU

County Commissioners

  1. Gatluak Wichar Nyak – Commissioner Rubkona County – SPLM-IO
  2. James Chol Gatluak Manime – Commissioner Mayom County – SPLM/ITGONU
  3. Kawai Chany Guor – Commissioner Guit County – SPLM/ITGONU
  4. Gatluak Nyang Hoth – Commissioner Mayiandit County – SSOA
  5. Gordon Koang Biel – Commissioner Koch County – SPLM/ITGONU
  6. Stephen Taker Riek – Commissioner Leer County – SPLM/ITGONU
  7. William Gatjiet Mabor Wan – Commissioner Panyijar County – SPLM-IO

Sudan devalues its currency in bid to combat ailing economy

Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok | Photo: Reuters

Sudan announced a managed flotation of its currency on Sunday, in an unprecedented but expected step to meet a major demand by international financial institutions to help transitional authorities overhaul the battered economy.

The move is the boldest economic measure taken by the joint military-civilian government that has ruled the African country after a popular uprising. The revolt led to the military’s overthrow of autocrat Omar al-Bashir in April 2019. The country has since been on a fragile path to democracy with daunting economic challenges representing a major threat to that transition.

The sharp devaluation could provoke a popular backlash as the price of goods and services rise in response to the fall of the pound’s value and possible hike in the price of fuel and other essential goods. There were already sporadic protests over dire living conditions in the past couple of weeks in the capital, Khartoum and other parts of the country.

The U.S. dollar had been trading at over 350 pounds to the dollar on the black market, while its official rate was at 55 pounds to the dollar. Following the devaluation, local media reported banks were selling the dollar at an average of 375 pounds, and buying the U.S. currency for an average of 390, in an attempt to attract those trading in the unofficial currency market.

Sudan’s currency will now fluctuate according to supply and demand and the the Central Bank of Sudan said it will announce a daily flexible indicative rate in a “flexible managed float” that banks and other exchange bureaus are required to trade at within 5% above or below.

The managed floating system, that took effect Sunday, gives the central bank the option to set a rate based on the trading average, Al-Fatih Zayed al-Abidin, the central bank governor said in a news conference in Khartoum along with Finance Minister Gibril Ibrahim.

The move was part of measures the transitional government has embarked on in recent months to transform the country’s economy and rejoin the international community after over two decades of isolation.

The Central Bank said its decision would help “normalization of ties with international and regional financial institutions and friendly countries to ensure the flow of grants and loans” into Sudan’s economy.

“Our economy is in a situation that cannot be addressed without making such a decision,” Ibrahim said. “It is in our interest, in the interest of the country, and in the interest of the citizen.”

Western governments welcomed the decision to liberate the exchange rate. The U.S. Embassy in Khartoum welcomed the “courageous” move, saying it paves the way for debt relief and significantly increases the impact of international assistance.

“This decision will also help Sudanese companies and attract international investment as both local and foreign companies will no longer encounter difficulties doing business in Sudan because of the dual exchange rate,” it said.

Volker Perthes, the U.N. envoy for Sudan, also hailed the floatation, saying, “It demonstrates that the transitional authorities can reach consensus, take difficult decisions and carry them through.”

The move was a key demand by the International Monetary Fund. Sudan should conclude a 12-month Staff Monitoring Program with the IMF to win relief on its foreign debt, which is at $70 billion. That program is set to end in September.

Sunday’s move came after Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok announced a Cabinet reshuffle to add rebel ministers. The reshuffle was part of a deal the transitional government struck last year with a rebel alliance.

Sudan has for years struggled with an array of economic woes, including a huge budget deficit and widespread shortages of essential goods and soaring prices of bread and other staples. The country’s annual inflation soared past 300% last month, one of the world’s highest rates.

Original ssource: AP
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