COURT to rule on number of States
By Kitab A Unango
The failure of parties to the Revitalized Peace Agreement to agree on the number of states and their boundaries has prompted the mediator to suggest court ruling as alternative to settling the matter.
David Mabuza, Deputy President of South Africa, entrusted to mediate talks over the number of the controversial 32 states said they have proposed that the issue be sent to a special court to rule and present its report within 90 days.
“Now on the resolution of number of states, the parties have different views. We now can say that we owe down to a view which we still need to roundup that view. We have presented the view to the President, we have presented the view to Dr. Riek Machar and we need to present this view to all the remaining parties,”
“The view seeks to say that we agree to form the government of national unity but we are going to subject question of number of states to arbitration, a mechanism that is going to take 90 days, which is the proposal on the table. 90 days that will go into the government of national unity,” Mabuza said.
The number of states and their boundaries is one of the sticking points, the opposition groups earlier said they would not participate in next government if it was not resolved, accusing the incumbent government of violating truce by unilaterally creating 32 states in 2015.
Addressing the press at the state house after presenting the proposal to President Kiir and Dr. Riek yesterday, the Special Envoy said the government has no objection to the proposal but would present the same to other parties to get their views on the suggestion.
“That is what we have proposed, and our feeling is that the government does not have a problem with the proposal. We are now taking this proposal to all other parties. We are going to finalize this proposal and we are going to make public aware,” he said.
Martin Elia Lomuro, Cabinet Affairs Minister pointed out that the government was concern of the welfare of the citizens, thus, willing to accept formation of the government of national unity on time.
“The President is very humble and touched with high level of concern for our countries in the continent and in the region in the attempt to ensure that the Revitalized Government of National Unity is formed in time so that the people of South Sudan can have peace and get engaged in their livelihoods like any other country,” Lomuro said.
Despite unresolved issue of number of states, the Special Envoy, Mabuza said parties were willing to form coalition government even before the deadline.
“What is important to know that all the parties to the agreement I have spoken to have agreed to the formation of the government of national unity comes the date 22nd of February. The parties are even committed to form the government of national unity even before that date,” he said.