Press Release

Jieng Elders Warns UNMISS and Partners To Stay Out of South Sudan’s Politics of 28 States



Juba, South Sudan

Weekly press briefing conducted by the United Nations Mission in South Sudan [UNMISS], with featured guest Christian Okafor, Project Manager for UN-Habitat South Sudan.(Photo credits: UNMISS/JC Mcilwaine)
Weekly press briefing conducted by the United Nations Mission in South Sudan [UNMISS], with featured guest Christian Okafor, Project Manager for UN-Habitat South Sudan.(Photo credits: UNMISS/JC Mcilwaine)
May 26, 2016(Nyamilepedia) —— The Jieng Council of Elders (JCE) is alarmed and deeply regrets the recent remarks by UNMISS Chief with respect to the status of the 28 States establishment order, (EO 36/2015). The UNMISS head said that she does not recognize the 28 states. Obviously, there are pockets of political opposition in the country to the creation of 28 states and so for her to take the same position, as the opposition, is an act of partiality and goes counter to the spirit of the agreement and inconsistent with the mandates of the institutions they lead.

Notwithstanding the fact that she is siding with the opposition on this issue, the UNMISS leader appears bent on encroaching deliberately into the affairs of a sovereign state. It may serve her well to stay out of South Sudanese politics and administrative matters and allow the South Sudanese to chart their course on these matters without prejudice. The council therefore advises the two institutions to adhere strictly to their respective mandates by avoiding unwarranted meddling in the affairs of a sovereign state. With respects to the 28 states establishment order, the council would like to unequivocally reiterate its position as follows:

  • The sovereignty of the Republic of South Sudan is vested solely in the people of South Sudan and it is not amenable or subject to debates engendered from within or from without.
  • The right of the people of South Sudan to govern themselves within the confines of their respective diverse cultures ought to be held sacred and inalienable;
  • The 28 states establishment order is a decision by a legitimate government in response to a popular demand of the people of South Sudan and any foreigner or foreign entity that questions the validity of this decision, does so with the full knowledge that it is undermining the sanctity of our sovereignty.

In light of the aforementioned, the UNMISS leader should conduct herself with utmost composure and great sensitivity required in a divisive political situation such as this and to maintain high level of integrity and impartiality. Instead of fanning political brinkmanship and hatred among South Sudanese with their statements, the UNMISS leader ought to help the parties to the agreement to expeditiously implement it in spirit and letter, see to it that the badly torn social fabric, which binds our people together at the grassroots, is fully repaired. This is the priority of the highest order for the people of South Sudan and those who are invited to assist the people of South Sudan in this transition should embrace the same categorically.

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The council reiterates that this is not the time to play political hardball with the stability of the country. Any attempt to scuttle the 28 states establishment order will be inconsistent with the ongoing efforts to bring peace and reconciliation in the country. It is therefore imperative to give peace a chance by making sure that the people’s legitimate demands are not subjected to dangerous international machinations. The council stands opposed to any efforts that are flagrantly aimed at delaying South Sudanese’s popular demand for self-government and calls on all peace loving people to reject any misguided actions that go contrary to peace objectives.


Justice Ambrose Riny Thiik,             Chairman

Hon. Joshua Dau Diu,                        Co-Chairman

Hon. Aldo Ajou Deng,                        Member

Hon. Maker Thiong Maal,                 Member

Email: jiengcouncilofelders.ss@gmail.com

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Rebecca Ibrahim May 26, 2016 at 9:18 pm

This group should be greatly ashamed of speaking for the people of south Sudan because they donot reflect south Sudan society .

Deng Deng May 26, 2016 at 11:49 pm

What is very clear is that the JCE are not elected by the people and thus speak as individual South Sudanese. They are a tribal entity, and not speaking on behalf of the 10 000 000 people of the 64 tribes. What is also very clear is that the President and the leader of the opposition signed a peace agreement which clearly states 10 states. The attempt to use clever machinations to circumvent what was signed by a disgruntled group of men has no bearing whatsoever on the implementation of the Peace agreement. None at all.
what is also clear to anyone is that the 6 500 000 on the run from unrest and fighting want peace. Palace coups and the intrigues around in the court of the President is of little interest as it is not furthering peace. There is very little funding available for the 10 states (without external international support), let alone 28 states. The JCE men are working against the peace agreement, one has to wonder why? What is the ulterior motive?
The peace agreement has been duly signed, it is not only supported by “pockets of South Sudanese”, but has the full weight of support by the international community and the neighbor states in Africa but also by AU, IGAD, EU, UN and the Troika nations. As long as this document stands bearing the legal signature of the parties, UNMISS should be free to quote from it. Oh, and that document says 10 states not 28, 58 or 212. One wonders why the JCE are working against the peace agreement? It puts the President in a very difficult position. He signed and now this?
What is the ulterior motive by the JCE? The JMEC is in fact overseeing processes under its mandate and as per the pace agreement. It has certain legally mandated power, powers that the JCE most definitely has not.
Let sanity and peace prevail.

Lul May 27, 2016 at 1:51 am

If the JCE were defending a winning formula, that is winning for the South Sudanese people, one could have some sympathy for their call. But this is far from the case, in the last 5 years a systemic plundering of resources and funds. People far worse off now than before. International figures stating 50 000 to perhaps 300 000 dead. What sovereignty is there really to defend here? Sovereignty to do more of the same? JCE are defending that which can’t be defended – a dead smelling carcass of a dream (which turned into a nightmare for the people).

What are the JCE really defending? And who are these men? Do they take a stand for people and the wellbeing of women children and men in the country? Or are they desperately defending privilege of the few over benefits to the many? When you see people getting very upset, it is normally because they feel threatened, we must ask ourselves why the JCE are agitating against the international community so harshly. Clearly not on behalf of the people, so what then? Their unfettered access to the state coffers?

Veiled threats to UNMISS unbecoming in general and by the unelected group of men in the JCE in particular.
The president must honor what he has signed – it is really as simple as that.

chol y May 27, 2016 at 2:46 am

Deng Deng get lose son of Nyagaat. 28 States are here to stay.

man of the people May 27, 2016 at 4:50 am

Just insane bunch of elder, looking for food.

Kiir Riak Bai May 27, 2016 at 9:44 am

Dinka council must know the obligation of the international community and theirs. they should know that south Sudan not is an Island where they coin words in the names of Dinka. we Dinka never ask 28 states or demand for it. At the movement, we needs 28 to be drop and prioritize on the suffering of the people. Dinka is a community which cannot be led by such self-clame Dinka leaders. where were they during the war between the south and the north?


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