By William Madouk Garang
The government has written to the United Nations Mission in South Sudan over a request seeking support for conducting a free, fair and credible election at the end of the transitional period.
Dr. Martin Elia Lomuro, the Minister of Cabinet Affairs in a letter dated January 24, asked the UN chief, Nicholas Haysom to give necessary support for the government to prepare for the election slated for 2024.
“The government of South Sudan hereby requests the United Nations to provide electoral assistance to the government and relevant national institutions in support for the preparation and conduct of peaceful, inclusive, and creditable elections,” Lomuro said.
He added that the government will be grateful if necessary steps could be instantly taken through the provision of a comprehensive electoral process of South Sudan as envisioned within the R-ARCSS.”
“We hope that with the continued support of the United Nations, South Sudan will be able to build its national institutions in a sustainable manner,” he observed.
“The government of South Sudan trusts that the United Nations’ support to the elections will help promote transparency, credibility and trust in the country’s electoral processes,” he added.
According to Lomuro, the decision is in line with the agreement and roadmap which stated that, the people of South Sudan must go for a vote at the end of the transitional period to elect their leaders.
He said there is a need to begin planning and preparations for elections, and establishing the legal framework, reconstitution of the national Elections Commission, working with political parties, civil society, media awareness, and creating conditions for inclusive participation for the citizens.
“This is of utmost importance considering the legislative, institutional and consultative engagements requirement to ensure peaceful, inclusive and creditable elections,” Lomuro noted.
Dr. Elia acknowledges and appreciates the long-standing relationship with the United Nations since independence, and its continuous support in building stable, sustainable and democratic institutions in the country.
On January 12, 2022, the head of the UN mission in South Sudan, Nicholas Haysom urged the unity government to start preparing a conducive political environment ahead of the forthcoming elections.
During his address, the UN Chief said he has been engaging with leaders, the National Election Commission and stakeholders about the need of open civic space in preparation for 2024 elections.
The head of peace mission said much work needed to be done such as establishing a legal framework and preparing the ground and environment for the conduct of elections.