DECLARTION BY CSOs ON THE TRANSITIONAL GOVERNMENT OF NATIONAL UNITY AND THE PEACE PROCESS: Quality Hotel, Juba, South Sudan 24-25 September 2014
Oct 3rd, 2014 (Nyamilepedia) — Concerned that the people of South Sudan are not adequately informed about the ongoing IGAD-led peace process for South Sudan and that the process is disconnected from the South Sudanese public who do not engage with it in any way;
Further Concerned that the delegates to the peace talks including CSO delegates do not premise their deliberations on the basis of the views solicited from the citizens;
Considering that is important to establish a mechanism of soliciting and consequently considering the views of the ordinary citizen in the peace negotiations;
Committed to influence the IGAD facilitated mediation to reflect the views of the people of South Sudan and to ensure that citizens are continuously informed about what is going on at the negotiation table;
Further committed to rolling out nationwide civic peace outreach programme aimed at disseminating both the deliberations and outcomes of the Peace talks and specifically the need for social cohesion, reconciliation and unity;
Commending the parties to the negotiations for agreeing to discuss the formation of a transitional government of national unity;
We the undersigned members of the civil society in South Sudan, having discussed about the envisaged formation of a transitional government of national unity in South Sudan alongside various other critical concerns such as – constitution making, reconciliation, truth telling and the proposed national dialogue process at a workshop held at the Quality hotel in Juba with support from PAX and Denis Hurley Peace Institute, from the 24th – 25th of September 2014, do hereby;
Call upon IGAD to:
• Be more accountable to the negotiating parties as well as to the citizens of South Sudan.
• Ensure that there are constitutional mechanisms that underpin the formation, implementation and termination of the TGoNU including agreed principles of adherence to democratic governance, the rule of law and constitutionalism.
• Ensure that the agreement facilitates an enabling environment for reconciliation and national healing – and that the principles governing the formation of the TGoNU will nurture national cohesion and stability.
Call upon CSOs in the Peace negotiations
• To closely liaise with CSOs representatives in South Sudan and in Diaspora – as well as with the CSO representatives who will be sent to Ethiopia in ensuring that the opinion of the people which will be solicited by CSOs all over South Sudan will henceforth be the basis of their positions in the peace talks.
• To frequently and consistently find time to brief CSOs in the country about the deliberations in Peace Talks and to effectively communicate with CSOs in the South Sudan.
• To ensure that the issues arising from the CSOs constitution process form the basis of constitutional principles and postulates to be agreed on at the peace talks.
• Ensures that the constitution making process is pro-people, all-inclusive legitimate and involves the participation of the civil society.
Call upon all the negating parties to ensure that;
• The TGoNU bestows power not only in the executive but parliament which is the people’s representatives.
• The reforms guaranteeing the formation of the TGoNU also strengthen the judiciary by making it independent and more effective.
• The Transitional Government of National Unity becomes the symbol of national unity and that its priorities focus include; restoration of stability, midwifing institutional reforms, kick starting socioeconomic development, delivering a pro-people constitution, organising reconciliation and national healing processes, rolling out the national dialogue process, preparing the nation for an elections and putting in place an economic recovery agenda amongst other issues.
• The principles underpinning the establishment of the proposed TGoNU emphasis that citizens are the driving force of decision making and that governance will be based on consensus building and dialogue as opposed to decrees.
• The establishment of the TGoNU is unanimously agreed in good faith because this is essential for confidence building, stability and nurturing national cohesion. The TGoNU should restore the hopes of a united nation dedicated to the pursuit of ensuring the happiness of all citizens. It should not be an end in itself but a transitional arrangement with a limited term of less than two years. It should comprise of trusted, untainted civil leaders with proven records of integrity.
• The mandate of TGoNU is to ensure the start of a reform agenda and that its establishment does not undermine democratic elections and competitive politics. Consequently one of its primary mandates should be to organize a democratic, peaceful, free fair and competitive general election. This should be underpinned in the post conflict constitution.
• The establishment of the TGoNU is done alongside constitutional amendments which will guarantee justice, security and a guarantee of promotion /protection of human rights.
• There should be clearly agreed upon modalities of power sharing, security arrangements and resource management.
• There should be constitutional safeguards to ensure that the proposed transitional government of national unity is not ethnically bigoted and that it does not plunge into war again.
• Elections should be the last agenda in the process roadmap for peace.
Call upon the government of South Sudan
• To provide a conducive environment for dialogue and debate including debate on subjects such as; federalism, reduction of presidential powers , justice and accountability, civil service reforms, good resource management and an end to corruption, security sector reforms , constitutionalism and the rule of law
Call upon the international community;
• To give the assurance that they will support the implementation of the outcome of the peace talks including establishment of the agreed TGoNU.
• To encourage the people of South Sudan and assure them that they will support progressive transition from humanitarian assistance to economic recovery.
LIST OF SIGNITOIRIES
Atim Caroline, SSWDN
Zahra Said, Activist
Opio Moses, JCEC/SCBO
Antony Waithaka, ERADA
Kiden Lilan, SSWEN
Alafi John, Initiative for Rural Development
Vivan Muari, AMA
Mogga Emmanuel, ERADA
Fred Chol, SSYPADO
Koma Vens, PDCO
Bai Bal Mangeny, SSYPADO
Farouk Ismail, SSLS
Gale Emmanuel, IPCS
Sebit Emmanuel, IPCS
Angelo Lokoyome, Catholic Church
Yarnow Akot, SSYPADO
Jasline Night, SSWDN/ SLI
Kawaja Kau, African Centre for Peace
Ayom Wol, Writer
Beny Gideon, African Centre for Peace
Jackline Nasiwa, SUCCESS
Sebit Ernest, IDCS
Joyce Lamanya, Kush Center
Ajok Alier, SSWLA
Lony Ruot, SALF/ SSuNDE
Abdu Amin, Mubadroom
Amanya Joseph, HURIDO
David Deng, SSLS
Stephen Pande, Justice Africa
Daud Gideon, PAX
Mike Pothier, DHPI
Peter Gai Manyuon , Independent Journalist