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Agany urges citizens to acquire National IDs as elections looms

By Aweye Teddy Onam


A lawmaker urges citizens to process national identity Cards to be recognized as South Sudanese for easy registration and voting in 2024 general elections.

Hon. John Agany Deng, spokesperson for the National Parliament, made the call during parliamentary sitting on Wednesday.

The National Assembly was deliberating on the joint reports on international convention on the reduction of statelessness.

Hon. Agany said that many South Sudanese do not know that the policy of nationality exists, simply because they were not sensitized.

He stated that it is the duty of the Ministry of Interior to sensitize South Sudanese on the question of nationality.

“Generally, people up to today don’t know that the policy of nationality exists in South Sudan, so each and every one of us should have a nationality; otherwise, how will you be known?” He questioned

The MP added that one of the basic documents that a citizen needs to have is a nationality ID so that one can be granted a work permit and register for election voting.

“We need to inform our population about nationality, and they must be sensitized so that they can acquire nationality,” he echoed.

Agany, who is also a parliament spokesperson, said the nationality ID differentiates a foreigner from a South Sudanese in the country so that one can get access to government employment opportunities.

The international conventions on statelessness that the parliament was scrutinizing for the country to ratify seek to reduce the state of statelessness, which demands that people with no state must be made to belong to a certain country.

“If you neglect it on your own and don’t want nationality, it will be your own risk because at a certain point, you will be asked for your identification”, Agany cautioned.

“During registration and the election voting period, people will be asked to bring their nationality IDs, and if they are not there, the government will refuse to register those without IDs, meaning they won’t be voting”, he added.

The assembly spokesperson argued that it is the responsibility of the parliament to make it a law whereby each and every South Sudanese must process their own nationality IDs.

According to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), around 90% of South Sudanese citizens do not possess national identity cards, and a significant number are at risk of statelessness.

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