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Parliament reconstitution nears as Kiir dissolves legislative houses

Author: Jale Richard | Published: Saturday, May 8, 2021

File: President Salva Kiir listens to the national anthem at the TNLA in Juba, February 21, 2017. REUTERS/Jok Solomon

President Salva Kiir has dissolved the Transitional National Legislative Assembly and the Council of States, paving way for the reconstitution of both houses.

The dissolution was announced in a presidential decree broadcast on state TV SSBC this evening.

The move comes after countless calls by activists for reconstitution of the national legislature following the formation of a unity government last year.

The revitalized peace agreement signed in September 2018, provides for the reconstitution of the Transitional National Legislative Assembly (TNLA) and the Council of States.

But parties to the peace deal dragged reconstitution of both upper and lower houses for over a year despite the formation of the executive arm of the government.

This, according to observers, made it difficult for the enactment of laws that assist the transitional processes, including reforms spelled out in the peace agreement.

Additionally, observers say the country is being run on a supplementary budget partly due to a lack of legitimate parliament.

Since last year, senior government officials, including information minister Michael Makuei and defense minister Angelina Teny disregarded parliamentary summons, arguing it had “no mandate.”

Both houses shall be reconstituted to include new appointees per the revitalized peace agreement.

The TNLA will be expanded from 400 to 550 members comprising representatives from the peace parties.

The former Transitional government shall nominate 332 members, SPLM-IO with 128, members and South Sudan Opposition Alliance, or SSOA, with 50 members.

The Other Political Parties, OPP shall have 30 representatives and the Former Detainees with 10.

The Council of States, on the other hand, shall be expanded from 50 members to 100.

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