National, News

NEC on nationwide readiness assessment

By Hou Akot Hou and Ijoo Bosco


Chairperson of the National Elections Commission (NEC) is in Northern Bahr El Ghazal state to evaluate the state’s readiness for the upcoming elections.

Mr. Abedego Akok arrived in the region on Monday and had already met with government officials. He would also meet women’s groups, political parties, and civil society organizations to gauge their level of preparedness.

“We are here in Northern Bahr El Ghazal in order to find out the level of knowledge and preparedness as elections are looming in December 2024,” Akok .

“Also we shall meet with the local organizations like youth, women and other civil society groups to listen to their views on how they want the elections conducted,” he continued.

State Governor Tong Aken Ngor assured the electoral team of the state’s commitment to facilitating a free, fair, and transparent electoral process.

He announced the establishment of a High Elections Committee to support the NEC in carrying out their work effectively.

The governor also provided the NEC with a spacious office.

“We have allocated them an office which is spacious where they are going to do their activities without conditions, and it is something that we too can embark on as a state as it is a pre-requisite for the success of the incoming government,” Aken said.

Meanwhile, another high-level delegation has arrived in Torit, Eastern Equatoria state, to engage with state executives, the assembly, political parties, civil society organizations, women, and youth.

The delegation, consisting of three dignitaries led by Commissioner and Chief Election Officer Mac Maika Dang, will be in Torit until Friday, May 3rd, to discuss and clarify election-related matters with the local population.

George Lemi, the spokesperson of the commission, explained that they are there to inspect and supervise the properties of the State High Committee, meet with the committee staff, sensitize them on electoral activities, and discuss the challenges ahead.

Lemi emphasized the mandate given to the NEC by the National Election Act of 2012, as amended in 2013, which states that the National Election Commission will conduct the general election 60 days before the end of the transitional period.

Margret Idwa Okuyede, Eastern Equatoria state minister for culture, youth, and sports, offered a building for the commission to use for their activities.

She emphasized the importance of physically inspecting the building to ensure its suitability.

Angelo Geri, the Minister of Fisheries and Animal Resources, questioned the establishment of the State High Election Committee and sought clarification on the recruitment process for staffing the committee.

He suggested advertising the positions, shortlisting candidates, and conducting interviews to ensure competent individuals are selected.

German Charles Ojok, the state advisor on economic affairs, raised concerns about inequality in the status of constituencies in previous elections.

He asked if there would be amendments to rectify past mapping mistakes and provide marginalized areas with an opportunity to have their own constituencies or be divided into multiple constituencies.

The NEC delegation’s visit and consultations aim to address these important issues and ensure a transparent and inclusive electoral process in Torit and Eastern Equatoria state.

The country is preparing for its first general elections in December that would mark the end of the transitional government.

But critics have raised concerns about various unmet demands, such as the repatriation of refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) and the amalgamation of rival security forces into a unified army.

These issues have contributed to doubts among many citizens regarding the government’s ability to fulfil their aspirations for a successful election.

Despite the challenges, the visit by the NEC Chairperson is yet another step in assessing the state’s preparedness and gathering input from diverse stakeholders, which would inform the electoral process.

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