By James Okuk, PhD
In the Opening statement delivered to the members during the plenary meeting in Juba on 23rd June 2016 by H.E. Festus G. Mogae, the Chairperson of the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC), it could detected that the preliminary monitoring and evaluation of the pace of the implementation of the August 2015 Agreement on Resolution of Conflict in South Sudan (ARCSS) is overwhelmingly negative and frustrating to those who want to see a meaningful peace settlement in the country as a whole.
For the first time H.E Mogae has started addressing the scary and disappointing situation of South Sudan with ‘a heavy heart’ of almost-getting-frustrated as he narrated the highlights of his assessment to the 32 members of his institution, representing the parties to the agreement, the other South Sudanese Stakeholders and Adherents, the Regional Guarantors, and International Partners and Friends of South Sudan i.e., 2 each from GRSS, the SPLM/A – IO and Faith-Based Leaders; 1 each from Former Detainees, Other Political Parties, Women’s Bloc, Civil Society Organizations, Eminent Personalities, Business groups and Youth; 1 each from Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan, Uganda, Djibouti, Somalia, Rwanda, Chad, Nigeria, South Africa , Algeria and African Union Commission; and 1 each from U.S, UK, Norway, China, United Nations, European Union and IGAD Partners Forum (IPF) and also the public at large both nationally and internationally. For him the parties are failing to adhere to the letter and spirit of the ARCSS as stipulated in the Preamble and also to the spirit of the transitional National Constitutional Amendment Committee, culmination in the national elections at the end of transitional period.
According H.E. Mogae, Chapter I on Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU) is not fully established and moving as expected. It is seems to be paralyzed by the fact that only the Presidency and the Council of Ministers are in place but not working collectively as one team of peace yet. There seems to be a parallel government operating separately and secretly from the TGoNU. This is blocking any progress in the expansion and reconstitution of the Transitional National Legislative Assembly and Council of States, the reform of the Judiciary, the reconstitution and establishment of the Other Specialized Transitional Institutions and Mechanisms (i.e., the undersecretaries, the professional commissions and authorities) and the restructuring and composition of State Governments, especially in Conflict-Affected States and other states in accordance with power-sharing quotas in the ARCSS. The formation and operationalization of the expected Boundary Commission to look into the issue of 28 states as directed by the IGAD’s Council of Ministers in January 2016 remains a far away dream as some dirty games have been pushed into this to fail it.
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