South Sudan picks holes in human rights report

South Sudan picks holes in human rights report

The government of South Sudan disputed the report of the Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan, accusing it of overstepping its mandate.

Addressing the media on Wednesday on South Sudan’s position on the Commission’s report, the Director General for Multilateral Relations in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, Amb. Anthony Kon alleged that the commission had “interfered in the internal governance affairs of the sovereign state.”

Kon said South Sudan assessed the report of the Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan but discovered that it lacked a mechanism through which it would involve South Sudan in the implementation.

 “It is deplorable that the report never took into consideration the efforts of the government in the implementation of the Revitalised Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan 2018 (R-ARCSS),” he lamented.

He further claimed the document contained unverified and unrealistic allegations of human rights violations. He argued that the violations cited, such as political repression, economic predation, discrimination of women, inequality, sexual violence, slavery, and displacement of millions were unproven.

“This description of events cannot match the current improvement of the security situation in the country. These unproven and concocted situations do not reflect the current situation. Thus, the paragraph should be deleted,” he alleged.

For him, the report portrayed South Sudan as a country “lacking visionary leadership to address the violence and abduction,” mentioning that there is no rule of law in the country and that the commission should be removed for interfering with South Sudan’s internal affairs.

“The report also mentioned an absence of the established rule of law institutions and systems.”

“This paragraph undermines the status of South Sudan as a sovereign state and a member of the United Nations family. It is a direct interference in the internal affairs of South Sudan, which is an affront to the leadership of this country. As such, we suggest deletion.” He added.

According to him, the extension of the transitional period was something agreed upon by political leaders, and should not be the mandate of the commission.  

“The commission should desist from interference in internal affairs and only pay attention to issues within Human Rights Resolution 52/1. Hence, this paragraph should also be deleted as irrelevant to human rights,” he stated.

 He claimed that paragraph 13 also talks about the “negotiation and competition between or among the parties to the R-ARCSS, which is a normal case and should not be coined as a disagreement.”

“This insertion in the report does not represent the SPLM/IG nor the SPLM/IO’s current cordial relationship.”