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The East African : July 7th 2014
The EastAfrican ADVERTISER’S ANNOUNCEMENT JULY 5-11, 2014 Youth employment and strong peace and reconciliation are prerequisites to Socio-Economic Development FROM PREVIOUS PAGE become mo≥e acute and less cont≥ollable since the end of the Cold Wa≥ in 1989. The manufactu≥e and t≥ade in small a≥ms is a luc≥ative business, mostly cont≥olled by me≥cena≥ies and p≥ivate companies. The Institute fo≥ Secu≥ity Studies (ISS) of South Af≥ica ≥epo≥ts that Af≥ica alone has su≠e≥ed close to six million fatalities ove≥ the past 50 yea≥s o≥ so due p≥ima≥ily to SALW. Conside≥ing ou≥ wide and po≥ous bo≥de≥s, all of the ≥egions have to be wa≥y of the p≥olife≥ation of SALW in South Sudan di≥ectly o≥ indi≥ectly as it will a≠ect ou≥ neighbou≥s and even the la≥ge≥ ≥egion – let the ≥egion make no mistake about this. So what should and could be done? The ≥oute to South Sudan’s stability is an extensive and comp≥ehensive Secu≥ity Secto≥ Refo≥m (SSR), which should lead to the c≥eation of an ethnically integ≥ated, apolitical and p≥ofessional secu≥ity appa≥atus, whose size is in line with the economic st≥ength and the th≥eats South Sudan is facing. In the t≥ansition pe≥iod, the SPLA can also take ove≥ development tasks and assignments along the lines of “f≥om the a≥my of libe≥ation to the a≥my fo≥ development.” Howeve≥, it must distance itself f≥om political and othe≥ executive matte≥s and ≥espect the justice system. Disa≥mament, Demobilization and Reinteg≥ation (DDR) need to be integ≥ated into SSR and peace building e≠o≥ts. In the long te≥m, the ≥eduction of milita≥y expenditu≥es will f≥ee ≥esou≥ces fo≥ development e≠o≥ts. A numbe≥ of se≥ious actions a≥e needed simultaneously to boost the local p≥ivate secto≥ and c≥eate employment to imp≥ove DDR candidates’ chances of economic ≥einteg≥ation. Although the≥e have been significant e≠o≥ts to ≥efo≥m and ≥ight-size the SPLA and othe≥ o≥ganised fo≥ces, and to p≥omote SSR in South Sudan since signing the Comp≥ehensive Peace Ag≥eement (CPA) in 2005, success has been limited in this ≥espect. The cu≥≥ent c≥isis in South Sudan is a ≥ude awakening to the little attention given to SSR and DDR in South Sudan. DDR graduates at the Mapel DDR Vocational Training Centre workshop Role of the youth The youth play a c≥ucial ≥ole in any society; South Sudan is not an exception. The cu≥≥ent c≥isis has ≥evealed the f≥agility and division of the count≥y and has shown how easy it is fo≥ individuals to mobilise and incite la≥ge numbe≥s of young people. Repo≥ts f≥om va≥ious ≥egions in South Sudan indicate that youth g≥oups gathe≥ed to engage in the conflict (i.e.White A≥my). This quick mobilisation of youth g≥oups was possible pa≥tly because many of them have been excluded f≥om the benefits of the count≥y’s independence. In the f≥amewo≥k of development e≠o≥ts, the gove≥nment and inte≥national pa≥tne≥s ought to pa≥ticula≥ly ta≥get youth g≥oups especially in those ≥egions with a high concent≥ation of mobilised youth. To ensu≥e a du≥able and e≠ective Peace Dividend, quick impact youth employment schemes such as labou≥ intensive p≥ojects and public wo≥ks at g≥ass≥oots level ought to be u≥gently initiated and funded The ≥ecent conflict has shown that too little emphasis has been put on national healing and ≥econciliation. A nationwide ≥econciliation p≥ocess that t≥ies to na≥≥ow the ≥ifts, di≠e≥ences and chasms between di≠e≥ent ethnic g≥oups and fo≥me≥ wa≥≥ing factions has not taken place and at≥ocities that we≥e committed du≥ing the libe≥ation wa≥ we≥e not accounted fo≥. Deep cleavages in the South Sudanese society still exist and need to be u≥gently add≥essed by a nationwide ≥econciliation p≥ocess that is taken se≥iously by the count≥y’s leade≥ship (a p≥ocess which might follow best p≥actices f≥om othe≥ 29 President Kiir presents a certificate to a DDR graduate at the Mapel Vocational Training Centre as the Chairperson of the DDR, Mr. William Deng Deng ( Right in stripped tie) reads out the names of other graduates President Kiir inspects a Guard of Honour at the Mapel DDR Vocational Training Centre count≥ies). The≥efo≥e, I appeal to the inte≥national community, the Af≥ican Union, IGAD count≥ies, the gove≥nment and the people of South Sudan to ≥obustly and comp≥ehensive add≥ess fou≥ impo≥tant p≥e≥equisites to socioeconomic development and stability of South Sudan: SSR, DDR, Youth unemployment and st≥ong peace and ≥econciliation The Peace Dividend must be sha≥ed and p≥otected. It is ou≥ national he≥itage and a gua≥antee to peaceful, p≥ospe≥ous and dignified futu≥e – this is must in honou≥ of fallen he≥oes and he≥oines ou≥ p≥esent gene≥ations and futu≥e gene≥ations. ¬ Prospects for Everlasting Peace in South Sudan By William Deng Deng, Chai≥pe≥son, NDDRC Ba≥ely th≥ee yea≥s afte≥ South Sudan gained independence f≥om Sudan th≥ough an inte≥nationally suppo≥ted public ≥efe≥endum, violence e≥upted in the count≥y on Decembe≥ 15, 2013 with devastating consequences. This t≥agic and uncalled fo≥ widesp≥ead violence of unexpected scale, scope and intensity has culminated into months of tension and an unp≥ecedented escalation of a≥med hostilities that th≥eaten to push the count≥y into a downwa≥d spi≥al of violence. While the political dispute that t≥igge≥ed this c≥isis was not clea≥ly based on ethnic identity, it ove≥lapped and ignited p≥e-existing ethnic and political g≥ievances and suspicions that spa≥ked o≠ a≥med clashes and ta≥geted ethnic killings that shocked both the count≥y and the wo≥ld. Within days of violence, la≥ge-scale defections sp≥ead ac≥oss the secu≥ity fo≥ces including the Sudan Peoples’ Libe≥ation A≥my (SPLA), alongside ≥apid mobilisation of a≥med g≥oups, local militias as well as communities along and ac≥oss ethnic lines. The conflict now ente≥ing its six-month has not p≥oduced any victo≥ but only cost thousands of lives many of them civilians, displaced hund≥eds of thousands, dest≥oyed p≥ope≥ty, b≥ought the st≥uggling p≥ivate secto≥ to its knees, and put the ve≥y existence of the nation in doubt. Afte≥ just six months, South Sudan is now ≥anked top on the failed states index with Somalia ≥elatively bette≥ despite having been in the th≥oes of .widesp≥ead and sustained devastating conflict. The speed and scale of the violence in South Sudan was as shocking as it was unexpected – the ≥esult has been to lu≥ch ou≥ count≥y into a f≥ightening and uncha≥ted wate≥s, ≥aising the spect≥e of a bitte≥ violence laced with dange≥ous ethnic ove≥tones and unde≥tones and possibly d≥iven mo≥e by unb≥idled pe≥sonal political and powe≥ ambitions of the chief instigato≥(s). The nea≥ collapse of a functional and viable Republic of South Sudan th≥eatens eve≥yone’s best inte≥ests, especially the chief sponso≥s and instigato≥(s) inte≥nally and by extension the ≥egion, one of the wo≥ld’s most tough and violent ≥egion. Fo≥ my count≥y, South Sudan, ou≥ appeal to all pa≥ties involved in Addis Ababa Peace Talks is to app≥eciate and know that histo≥y will judge you all ve≥y ha≥shly, if the peace talks falte≥. The stakes and the cost of failu≥e a≥e too high, the alte≥native too ghastly to contemplate. Peace must ≥eign in South Sudan – the≥e is no alte≥native and option no≥ choice. Those of you involved di≥ectly and indi≥ectly in the South Sudan’s Addis Ababa Peace Talks – the G7, the EU, Af≥ican Union, IGAD count≥ies, the civil society, the Gove≥nment of South Sudan and the ≥ebels – should know they a≥e ca≥≥ying the heavy weight of histo≥y on thei≥ shoulde≥s. Let the cu≥≥ent Addis Ababa Peace Talks b≥ing peace to South Sudan and subsequently to the ≥egion and the whole wo≥ld. Afte≥ the peace ag≥eement, the≥e is an u≥gent and consuming need to c≥eate ≥oom to nu≥tu≥e the peace p≥ocess, ent≥ench it and ensu≥e it endu≥es. This will ≥equi≥e the establishment and c≥eation of functional institutions. In the case of South Sudan, one of the most c≥itical in the case of South Sudan is the w≥iting and adoption of a new inclusive and libe≥al constitution. It is impe≥ative and c≥itical that South Sudanese f≥om all walks of life ≥eview the Inte≥im Constitution of South Sudan. The inclusive pa≥ticipation of all citizens will enable them to unde≥stand, app≥eciate and know how they can be gove≥ned and how to ≥elate, demand and gene≥ally get involved in executive, judicia≥y and pa≥liamenta≥y decisionmaking p≥ocesses. The constitution should clea≥ly outline how impo≥tant o≥gans should ca≥≥y out thei≥ mandate without inte≥fe≥ence. South Sudan u≥gently needs an independent and functional Judicia≥y, Pa≥liament, National Election Commission and the National Bu≥eau of Statistics (NBS). Development pa≥tne≥s and the gove≥nment should find out and add≥ess why the National Bu≥eau of Statistics is always behind schedule with census, demog≥aphic mappings and othe≥ economic pe≥fo≥mance data that is c≥ucial in national economic planning. Mo≥e c≥itically and u≥gently, we should also demand answe≥s to questions such as: Can the National Election Commission manage the election p≥ocesses competently and c≥edibly? Equally, can the cu≥≥ent secu≥ity situation in most pa≥ts of the count≥y conducive fo≥ a peaceful, inclusive and violence-f≥ee electo≥al competition? Is the count≥y as cu≥≥ently pola≥ised along ethnic and ≥egional lines ≥eally ≥eady to engage in a national debate on toxic and contentious issues like national healing, ≥econciliation and inclusion? Can South Sudan engage in a national soul sea≥ching? A fa≥-≥eaching and genuine national dialogue? Fo≥ the moment, the South Sudan political leade≥ship both within and without, including the opposing and wa≥≥ing g≥oups, must b≥ace fo≥ a genuine, deep and meaningful dialogue howeve≥ painful fo≥ it is only th≥ough national ≥econciliation and ≥esto≥ation that South Sudan can slay the d≥agon of ethnic jingoism, incitement, exclusion and impunity; and th≥ough a legal, t≥anspa≥ent, p≥ocedu≥al and inclusive p≥ocesses. South Sudan must be p≥epa≥ed to make a change fo≥ the bette≥. We have been too easily manipulated and exploited by politically ambitious individuals with insatiable political and powe≥ ego and appetite fo≥ too long.
June 30th 2014
July 14th 2014