Cover Story

NEW DEAL – Three VPs of equal ranks proposed

(From left) Dr Riek Machar, Ugandan President Museveni, Sudanese President Al Bashir and President Salva Kiir during a meeting in Khartoum last month [Photo: South Sudan Presidential Press Unit]

By Jale Richard

The Sudan Mediating Team has tabled a new governance proposal to the parties at the High Level Revitalization Forum just days after the opposition rejected the Entebbe peace proposal.

According to the proposed deal, responsibility sharing at the State and local government levels shall be 55% for the incumbent government, SPLM/A-IO 25%, SSOA 10%, and other opposition parties 10%.

Incumbent President Salva Kiir Mayardit shall continue as President of the Republic of South Sudan during the transitional period with opposition leader Riek Machar to be reinstated as First Vice President.

The new proposal also maintained the creation of four positions of Vice Presidents as proposed during the Entebbe meeting in Uganda few days ago.

The current government will nominate two Vice Presidents, while other parties and entities will select one Vice President who will be a woman.

“Apart from the First Vice President, there shall be no hierarchy among the Vice Presidents and they shall all be of the same ranking,” the document said.

“In addition to collegial decision making and responsibility sharing between the President and Vice Presidents, the powers and functions of the President, First Vice President and Vice Presidents shall be delineated along the provisions of the ARCSS 2015,” it added.

The First Vice President shall oversee the Governance Cluster while the other three shall each oversee one of the Economics, Service Delivery and Infrastructure Clusters.

The new proposal also seeks to increase government ministries to 45 from the current 30.

The parties in the current Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU) shall share 30 ministerial positions, while the 15 ministerial positions shall be selected by the opposition political parties.

The Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/ Army in Opposition (SPLM/A-IO) shall have 12 ministries, the South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA) two ministers, the Other Political Parties (OPP) one minister.

It also proposed for 10 deputy ministers to be shared by the opposition parties.

In the parliament, seats of Members of Parliament shall be increased to 550 with the SPLM/A-IO nominating100 members; SSOA 40 members, and OPP 10 members.

While in the Council of States, the mediators proposed addition of new members with the SPLM/A-IO nominating 40 members; SSOA five, OPP three, and FDs two members.

The deal maintained the contested 32 states until an Inclusive Boundaries Commission (IBC) is established to decide on number and boundaries of South Sudan states.

The IBC members shall be appointed immediately upon signing of the agreement to review the establishment of new states and their boundaries.

Dr. Koiti Emily, representative of the youth at the HLRF in a tweet described the new proposal as “pushing the whole head of fish with bones down a toddler’s throat.”

Other parties to the HLRF were yet to respond to the new proposal by press time.


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