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Washington urges Juba to address election obstacles

By Staff writer

United States of America (USA) has called on South Sudan’s transitional government to address obstacles for the country to hold credible elections.

Antony J. Blinken, the US secretary of state made the call in a statement to the people of South Sudan to mark the 12th Independence anniversary of the country.

“We urge the transitional government to implement measures necessary to conduct free, fair, and peaceful elections,” Blinken’s statement reads in part.

South Sudan is expected to hold its first-ever democratic elections in December next year; however, a number of issues that would lead to credibility of the exercise are yet to be addressed.

The US called upon South Sudan’s leaders to address the impediments for the people to realize their aspirations.

South Sudan’s national transitional government is obliged to implement the 2018 Revitalized Peace Agreement to expedite the roadmap for a transition to democracy.

Blinken said that US is committed to supporting South Sudan to transcend to democratic future.

“Today, the United States reaffirms its commitment to stand with the people of South Sudan in pursuit of a democratic future and a society marked by dignity, opportunity, prosperity, and peace,” he said.

South Sudan is yet to establish the National Constitutional Review Commission, National Electoral Commission and Political Parties Council, to ensure credibility of forthcoming elections.

The US secretary of state also chipped in the need by the Juba government to address issues of corruption in public, private sectors, build security and to develop democratic institutions.

“Build a unified security service that respects human rights; to develop democratic institutions that ensure South Sudan is responsive to the needs of its people,” the US secretary of state said.

In the press release, the Government of the United States of America congratulates the people of South Sudan on the celebration of their independence.

“Twelve years ago, upon the founding of the world’s youngest nation, then-President Barack Obama recognized the people of South Sudan for having “endured extraordinary hardship and sacrifices to determine their own destiny,” Blinken said in the independence message.

He said Obama highlighted South Sudanese newly won “opportunity to realize a future where their lives are valued and their human rights are upheld.”

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