National, News

Minister to challenge ‘controversial’ parties’ registration fees

By William Madouk


Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs, Justice Ruben Madol is expected to write a response letter to the Political Parties Council (PPC) concerning the disputed $75000 in parties’ registration fees.

This development follows a query from Bol Joseph Agau, the MP representing Nyirol West County, about the Ministry of Justice’s position after the PPC maintained its stance on the remaining $75,000.

“When you [Madol] responded to advocate on May 20, 2024, and you copied PPC, the information in your response was clear. It indicated that you nullified and voided the registration fees,” Agau stated.

“However, the PPC in person of his chairperson James Akol Zakayo has deliberately, blatantly and with a lot ignorance maintained USD 75000,” he added.

MP Agau, who a member of member of the National Democratic Movement Party under the South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA) cited that “whatever has come out as legal advice from the Ministry of Justice should be given attention by all the government.”

“If there are any others behind this James Akol Zakayo should inform the House to know where are other laws or where is that institution he draws his laws from?” he quizzed.

In response, the Minister of Justice, Madol, explained that according to Article 135 of the constitution of the Republic of South Sudan, his docket is to serve as the chief legal officer of the government.

“Legally, in our opinion, we found that the way in which the PPC body determines these fees procedurally was wrong because they relied on a piece of legislation in a way that was irregular,” said Madol.

“We pointed out that, therefore legally we consider this null and void and ask that the matter be dropped, that was advice,” he added.

According to the constitution, Madol said legal advice from his docket is binding on all the concerned government institutions.

“If any institution concern neglects to abide by the advice of the Ministry of Justice there are legal avenues to do that; one the advice from the Ministry of Justice can be challenged before the court of law.”

Justice added that another way of challenging legal advice is to refer it to the cabinet to add their input.

“However, the official response that I got from the PPC was last Thursday, the chairperson of the PPC wrote to me, requesting that I withdraw the legal advice based on the legal advice which he attached and which he got from private lawyer that he has hired.

“Now, I am in the process of responding to that request legal process. That is the information I can give you on that- whether that satisfies your concern or not that is it,” he said.

“We did not mention any fee because tactically it is not the Ministry of Justice to determine the fees but we said let them write the legal processes they used to determine the fees.”

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