National, News

Parties urged to accelerate electoral preparations

By Mamer Abraham


South Sudanese Network for Democracy and Election (SSuNDE) has called for speedy preparation for the 2024 elections.

Executive director of the civil society organisation, Galdino Ochama Ojok said that is limited time left to conduct elections.

Ojok urged parties to the agreement to double their efforts to ensure timely implementation of critical tasks to avoid obstructing elections.

“We are left with thirteen months until the election period; I think that period is not enough; we need to pull our socks,” Ojok said in an exclusive interview.

Ojok said that the national election body needs to be very busy right now to put all the other processes right.

“We in civil society also need to move very fast in order to ensure that our people are well-informed,” he added.

The activist noted that the political parties must demonstrate political will to ensure that civil society carries out activism to educate citizens on elections.

“But all this I am saying goes back to the political will of our leaders. Do they need a good election where people participate fully with the full understanding that they are electing their rightful leaders, people whom they will question in the future?” Ojok continued.

Mr. Ojok hailed the reconstitution of the National Electoral Commission, the National Constitutional Review Commission, and the Political Parties Council (PPC), stressing the need for the bodies to hold utmost transparency and accountability.

“Let these bodies be transparent and accountable to the people of South Sudan. They are reconstituted to take the people of South Sudan to the next level,” he urged.

The latest report that was presented to the UN Security Council by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres indicated that little progress has been made in the peace roadmap implementation.

The report seen by No. 1 Citizen urged the government to double its efforts to ensure that the country is ready for elections without fail.

Opposition parties had been complaining of a lack of political space for them to carry out rallies across the country.

They also maintained that elections should not be conducted without the completion of all the critical tasks, including the permanent constitution-making process, the census, and the deployment of forces, among others.

In September, the national minister for information, Michael Makuei Lueth, stated that the outstanding tasks were not conditions for an election.

He instated that the country must conduct elections without fail regardless of differences among political parties.

Last week, President Salva Kiir Mayardit reconstituted three key election bodies: the National Constitutional Review Commission (NCRC), the National Elections Commission (NEC), and the Political Parties Council (PPC).

Stephen Par Kuol, the national minister of peacebuilding in the same week, also said the country was not prepared for elections because the preparations were limited.

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