Lawmaker proposes two more years for Kiir, Machar; demotion for VPs

Lawmaker proposes two more years for Kiir, Machar; demotion for VPs

The viability of debate on the viability of the 2024 elections continues to gather heat as some leaders now propose the restructuring of the current executive to allow the current leaders to continue with their mandates.

According to a letter addressed to President Salva Kiir by Dharual Mabor, a leader of the Party of National Unity (PNU), which is a signatory to the National Agenda in ITGoNU, South Sudan should consider two years of a “downsized government of national unity.”.

Mabor argues that this will enable the government to escape the bloated wage bill and duplication of duties.

He posited that the time left cannot be enough to conduct the election, while an extension is against the will of the people.

“Conducting the election on December 22, 2024, is impossible, and extending the bloated, revitalised government of National Unity intact is unacceptable,” he said.

According to him, the “downsized government of National Unity” should maintain Salva Kiir as the President of the Republic of South Sudan and Dr. Riek Machar as Vice President to serve until elections are held within 24 months.

The politician, however, suggested that Vice President Dr James Wani Igga be made the speaker of the parliament and the other three vice presidents be made state governors.

According to him, Taban Deng would be the governor of Unity State, Hussein Abdelbagi Akol would serve in Northern Bahr el Ghazal, and Rebecca Nyandeng De Mabior would become the governor of Jonglei State.

Mabor asserted that the bloated government consumes a lot of resources that are supposed to be used for development, adding that both the cabinet and parliament must also be reduced in the new government.

Based on his proposal, the National Assembly would be reduced from 550 members to 332 members with only one speaker. The cabinet would also be reduced from 35 ministers to 25 ministers.

According to him, the number of deputy ministers should be reduced from 10 to 7.

In his proposal, the Council of States would be reduced from 100 to 66 lawmakers with only one deputy speaker.

And for the state, according to him, the number of lawmakers would be reduced from 100 to 60, and also

The Council of Ministers will also be downsized in the state to reduce spending.

Mabor appealed to the peace parties to accept his proposal in order to reduce spending and use such money to implement the agreement.

He added that a peaceful election can be done after two years, citing that time is against it and parties should not extend the huge government as it is.

“The starting point is March 22, 2024, then elections could be comfortably held on September 22, 2026, since this will still be the rainy season, then elections should be held on December 22, 2026, for the transitional period to end on February 22, 2027,” he said.

He added that the timeline set by the National Election Act and the Political Parties Act for conducting elections adds up to 21 months, and he added that no possible amendment of these two laws can reduce that time frame to suit the remaining period for elections.

“At the same time, a blanket extension of the transitional period with the same government composition as was done in August 2022 with the roadmap is not only undesirable but is totally rejected by the South Sudanese and the international community,” he said.

Last month, MP David De Dau, who represents Twic East County in the Transitional National Legislative Assembly, proposed a five-year extension to maintain Kiir and Machar.

The lawmaker also proposed the need to reduce government spending to support the implementation of the agreement.