March 16, 2016 (JUBA) – South Sudanese President, Salva Kiir, has issued a republican order appointing members of legislative assembly for a newly created Latjor state in implementation of the new 28 states he created in October last year.
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This comes after the unilateral decision to divide up the country and expand the constitutionally recognized 10 states to 28, despite signing a peace agreement to end 21 months of war with armed opposition and other stakeholders on the basis of 10 states in August 2015.
President Kiir issued order number 130 on 25 February, 2016, appointing 21 members of parliament after several months of consultations among communities members and party officials in the area about criteria to be followed for the selection and which of the parties to be represented in the parliament.
13 members of parliament, according to the order, are nominees of the ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) faction allied to President Salva Kiir and 7 other members from come from the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO) faction allied to the First Vice President designate, Riek Machar.
One member, bringing the total number of legislators to 21 members, was appointed to represent natives of the area residing abroad in recognition of their contributions in various ways in the area.
Governor Peter Lam Both, speaking at the swearing in ceremony during election of speaker of the new state parliament on Wednesday, said his state welcomes any citizen from any corner of the country to stay and live in the area, regardless of whether they are from West and Eastern Nile states or from other states in the country.
Latjor State Information Minister, Peter Hoth Tuach, commended Governor Both for exhibiting exceptional leadership and said he expressed optimism that the parliament and the executive would harmoniously work together to sensitize citizens about the significance of peace, unity and reconciliation.
LATJOR PARLIAMENT ELECTS ITS FIRST SPEAKER
Parliament of a newly created state of Latjor, curved from Upper Nile state, Wednesday has elected its first speaker of parliament.
Tuach has revealed that members of the Latjor State Legislative Assembly have elected Chuol Dep Kier as the speaker of the newly established parliament.
“South Sudan’s Latjor State Legislative Assembly members have unanimously elected Hon. Chuol Dep Kier as Speaker of The House and Hon. Tut Simon Kor as Deputy Speaker as well,” Tuach revealed on Wednesday.
He congratulated the two top parliamentary leaders on their elections. Tuach however did not say where the elections took place, either in the national capital, Juba, or in Nasir, the new capital of the state.
Kier previously served as deputy speaker of Upper Nile state parliament before the 2013 crisis in the country.
Latjor state is inhabited by the Jikany Nuer section in Upper Nile region. Its capital, Nasir, has been a contested town between government troops and forces of the armed opposition faction led by the first vice president designate, Riek Machar.
The new state, according to the August 2015 peace agreement between president Kiir and opposition leader Machar, will be governed by the opposition faction along with another oil rich Unity state.
President Kiir, when appointing governors for the new 28 states, however told the governors of the states curved from Upper Nile and Unity to be ready to vacate their seats once the opposition group nominate their governors for the states