ARCISS at stake: Government and SPLM-IO disagreed to name Ministers on several demands

By Ayuen Akuot Atem
The SPLM in government Led by President Salva Kiir Mayardit and its partner in the armed opposition, the SPLM-IO under the command of the former vice president Dr Riek Machar Tenby, have failed to name the Ministers that will take part in the soon to be formed Transition government of National Unity (TGoNU) under the auspices of joint monitoring and evaluation commission (JMEC).
However the two principal parties to the agreement failed to reach conscious as the matter of several conditions and counter biding put forward by the both the two parties including the transitional constitution to be in place before the formation of the government, revoking of 28 states and demilitarization of Juba.
SPLM-IO demands
The opposition faction has refused to announce and submit its nominees to the selected ministerial portfolios for formation of the government, citing delay in the amendment of the constitution. The government of national unity will not be formed unless the transitional constitution is in place.
The leadership and the members of the armed opposition are strict on the number of outstanding issues including the 28 states which the government unilaterally created on 2 October after the peace agreement was already signed. The agreement was based on the current constitutionally recognized 10 states in the country.
While the SPLM-IO said it could not recognize the 28 states, describing the decision as a violation of the agreement and asking the government to reverse the decision, the government on the other hand vowed not to revoke the decision, saying it was a demand of the people of South Sudan.
Among other outstanding issues include implementation of the security arrangements which was supposed to be implemented within the 90 days of pre-transitional period from the signing of the peace deal. This includes demilitarization of the capital and deployment of joint police and military forces from the two rival armies.
The transitional constitution also should have been amended to incorporate the peace agreement and to serve as the basis for formation of a transitional government of national unity (TGoNU).
Senior officials of the armed opposition faction of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM-IO) under the leadership of the former South Sudanese vice-president, Riek Machar, have been recalled from Juba back to the opposition faction’s headquarters of Pagak, near the Ethiopian border for consultations.
Government response
On Thursday, presidential press secretary, Ateny Wek Ateny, said government officials were consulting on a lineup of ministers that could be announced on the 22nd of this month.
But Makuei said the government was expecting that the unity government would be formed before the constitution is passed.
“We had agreed earlier that we go in for the formation of the transitional government of national unity without necessarily waiting for the constitution,” he told reporters after a Council of Ministers meeting in Juba on Friday.
“This is something beyond our position, and there is no way we can insist that it should be set up as long as they are saying ‘no’.”
It is alleged that on Friday in a Council of Ministers meeting chaired by President Salva Kiir in which they government has approved to the suspended formation of the transitional government until the constitution is amended.
However the government has announced to stop accommodating members of the advance team of the SPLM-IO and would evict them from hotels by 22 January.
It is alleged that the government cited lack of money to pay for the accommodation also including lack of commitment from the international partners to continue to shoulder the bills.
More ever observers say the decision to stop accommodating the opposition’s members could be a result of frustration from the government which had tried to rush the formation of a transitional government without implementing the required provisions in the accord.
Former Political detainees
Only the former detainees led by Pagan Amum announced their nominees to the ministerial positions, The Former Detainees have nominated their ministers for the forthcoming government of national unity. The nominees include two Deng Alor Kuol has been nominated for Foreign Affairs, John Luk Jok, for Transport, and Dr Cirino Hiteng as the deputy minister of foreign affairs.
South Sudan Opposition Parties
Meanwhile the pro-government opposition parties under leadership of Dr. Martin Elia Lomoru will take the Ministry of Cabinet Affairs whereas the eighteen alliance of Opposition parties lead by Dr Lam Akol Ajawin will take Minis try of Agriculture and forestry.
JMEC has not yet comment on the delay regarding naming and submission of the Ministerial lists of Ministers by the two principal to the agreement despites several demands and counter accusation traded by both parties.
Analyst urged that with the current delays and stalemates in the implementation of the peace deal, the formation of the transitional government of national unity may only take place in February or March.


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