Juba, November 3, 2023 (SSNA) — President Salva Kiir has reconstituted the National Constitutional Review Commission (NCRC), National Elections Commission (NEC), and Political Parties Council (PPC), according to a decree read live on the South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation Television (SSBCTV) today.
The announcement comes as the young nation prepares for general elections slated to take place in December 2024.
In the decree, the President appoints people from South Sudan’s political parties, civil society, and academics, among others.
Riang Yer Zuor, a prominent official of the main opposition Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-In Opposition (SPLM-IO), was appointed Chairperson of the National Constitutional Review Commission. The President also appointed SPLM’s Awak Bior Ajang as Deputy Chairperson and Abraham John Nathana as the NCRC Secretary.
The President assigns Micheal Yabagayo as the deputy of the National Elections Commission and keeps Abednego Akok Kacuol as the NEC Chairperson.
Akol Zakayo, Lona Loduro, and Peter James Lemi were appointed as Chairperson, Deputy Chairperson, and Executive Secretary of the Political Parties Council respectively.
The move has been received with mixed reactions with one observer who demanded anonymity describing the appointment as “general elections sugar-coating.”
“Anyway, nobody cares about these new appointments. Let’s face it, the president is the one who behind the scenes tells his party lawmakers not to reconstitute the Constitution. So even if he appoints or reappoints people, nothing will happen in parliament,” he asserts.
South Sudan has scheduled general elections for December next year. However, leaders of opposition parties like the SPLM-IO and South Sudan Opposition Alliance remain skeptical. The SPLM-IO has publicly criticized the December 2024 elections, saying peace implementation should come before elections.