South Sudan slams Troika for withholding support for polls

South Sudan slams Troika for withholding support for polls

The government of South Sudan slammed the Troika countries, accusing them of refusing to finance the upcoming election slated for December 2024.

Addressing the media after the completion of the Saudi Arabia-Africa Summit held in Riyadh, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Dr James Pitia Morgan, hit on Troika for blowing hot and cold, refusing to support the agreement signed in August 2022, paving the way for the roadmap, and now withholding its support for the planned election.

The minister said South Sudan lost lots of lives, and several people also lost their livelihoods and were displaced as a result of the civil war. Hence, the election is one of the gambits for achieving the required stability.

 “It is up to you, the people of South Sudan, to take responsibility,” he said.

“We are calling for an election in South Sudan, and the elections are not going to take place in the UK; the election will take place here, and it is for the people of South Sudan,” he said, adding that Troika should continue to support the transition process.

“Troika refused to witness the revitalised peace agreement, but Japan, China and other countries witnessed it. We formed the government through this revitalised peace agreement,” he said. “Troika never supported anything of peace in this country, and the time has come for us to call on Troika to support peace in this country,” he added.

In 2022, Troika countries welcomed and praised South Sudan peace parties for their implementation of the security arrangements set out in Chapter II of the Revitalised Agreement for Resolution of Conflict in South Sudan (R-ARCSS).

 “The Troika will continue to support the parties in their efforts to achieve a stable, peaceful society and meet the commitments they have made to the people of South Sudan,” it noted.

In August 2023, Troika issued a statement warning that the leaders were lacking the political will to conduct the election. The group, which comprises the UK, the US and Norway, argued that the government had disregarded the timelines meant to prepare for the elections and that the major parties were instead engaged in destructive political bickering.  

“There has neither been any meaningful progress nor evidence of political will. Deadline after the deadline has been missed: laws remain unpassed, commissions unformed, and implementation bodies unfunded,” it noted in a statement.

“The transitional government justified a 24-month extension of the transitional period based on a clear timeline for a number of the transitional government’s priorities in delivering free and fair elections, as set out in their ‘Roadmap,’ as well as on newfound political will.”

“Without this, they will fail in their mandate to deliver a better future that the South Sudanese people want and deserve through peaceful, free, fair and credible elections,” Troika added while emphasising the importance of political will.

Earlier this month, President Salva Kiir reconstituted the National Elections Commission, the Political Parties Council and the National Constitutional Review Commission which are important bodies for the conduct of the election.

However, the government is still facing the challenge in the deployment of the necessary unified forces, a situation the National Transitional Committee (NTC) ties to the lack of funds. Underneath this is the dilemma of whether to conduct the election in the absence of a permanent constitution or not.