Explaining the S Sudan peace agreement (18): Who will decide on security reform?
'Focus on the Agreement' is a new daily segment broadcast on Radio Tamazuj to explain the contents of the peace deal signed in August 2015 between South Sudan's warring parties.
In our previous episode we looked at what the peace agreement says about demilitarization of Juba. Today we will discuss the role of a new body called the Strategic Defence and Security Review Board.
The purpose of this board is to recommend ways to reform the army and other security organs.
It will undertake “a comprehensive assessment” within 120 days of the signing of the agreement leading to a process of reform across the whole security sector, according to article 6.3 of Chapter 4 of the peace deal.
The members of the board will include 4 representatives of each warring party, 2 of the SPLM Former Detainees, 2 of other political parties, one religious leader, one opposition MP, one academic, one women's leader, and one youth leader, amongst others.
The Board may also recruit local and international experts to provide opinions on security sector reform.
According to the peace deal, the board may recommended changes to the structure, size and policies of the army, police, prisons service, national security service, fire service, wildife service and other security branches. They may also recommend changes to security legislation. It may also recommend redefining the purposes of these organs.
The findings of the Strategic Defence and Security Review Board will be put into a report and published. This paper should then be endorsed by the Council of Ministers and National Assembly.
But the peace agreement is not specific about procedures for publication and implementation of the findings of the Board, referring to the need for executive approval by the “political leadership” of the country.