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2024 Elections: UN, AU, IGAD present list of priorities to parties

Author: Madrama James | Published: Wednesday, August 2, 2023

SRSG Nicholas Haysom on Wednesday's press conference says South Sudan has to grapple with multiple challenges, including the effects of the Sudanese situation, without losing sight of the critical need to address its own internal security challenges - Photo Credit: UNMISS

The United Nations, African Union, and IGAD have presented a list of immediate priority decisions on South Sudan elections to be taken by the parties to the peace agreement, the UNMISS chief has said.

Nicholas Hysom disclosed the peace observers’ position during a press conference in Juba on Wednesday, August 2.

According to him, the government-led Joint Taskforce for the Implementation of Constitution-Making and Electoral Processes along with AU and IGAD, and UN participation is now at work.

He upon the request of the government, UNMISS, the AU, and IGAD have presented a list of immediate election priority decisions to be put forward to the political parties and Council of Ministers for consideration.

“UNMISS is currently supporting the transitional government in the constitution-making process and the planning for elections,” said Haysom.

“At the request of the government, UNMISS, the African Union and IGAD have presented lists of immediate priories decisions relating to elections which need to be taken by the parties to the peace agreement,” he said.

“These key decisions are anticipated to be forwarded to the political parties and the council of ministers for consideration.”   

Reacting to the views of analysts, observers and stakeholders that South Sudan is not yet ready for election, Haysom said the elections could be held on schedule if there is adequate political will to achieve the benchmarks in the roadmap.

He emphasized the need for critical decisions about the type and format of elections such as how many elections will be held, questions on the census, voter registration, and the inclusion of refugees and IDPs among others.

Hayom also underlined the need for urgent reconstitution of the National Constitutional Review Commission (R-NCRC), the National Elections Commission, and Political Parties Council.

“Key decisions about the electoral constitutions and security structures must be made urgently and these decisions do not require special additional financial resources,” Haysom said.

“Success in the period will persuade donors and the international community that are peaceful and that are secured South Sudan. It’s a viable place for engagement and support.”

“I want to assure the people of South Sudan that the United Nations family will remain committed to supporting them and to working with other regional and international partners towards peace, security, and prosperity in South Sudan.”

He said other key factors needed to be addressed for successful elections include stable security, and the creation of a conducive political and civic environment for all political parties, civil society groups, media, and all South Sudanese.

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