'Fast-track constitution-making process' -RJMEC urges unity gov't
The Reconstituted Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (RJMEC) has called on parties to the 2018 peace deal to immediately embark on the permanent constitution-making process as a pre-requisite for elections at the end of the transitional period.
In a press release, RJMEC said today marks exactly 24 months since the transitional period commenced and with only 12 months left to the end of the transitional period, a lot remains at stake in the implementation of the revitalized peace agreement.
“Today, February 22 February 2022, marks exactly 24 months since the beginning of the Transitional Period and the formation of the Revitalized Transitional Government of National Unity (RTGoNU),” the RJMEC press statement read in part.
It adds, "The Permanent Constitution process must be fast-tracked, as this is a pre-requisite for the conduct of elections at the end of the Transitional Period. The new constitution represents democratization, the rule of law, and a stable South Sudan."
While the Reconstituted Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (RJMEC) acknowledges the progress made, particularly in terms of governance, the Commission takes note of key tasks that remain pending.
“Several key pieces of legislation are not ratified by the Transitional National Legislative Assembly and State governments are not fully functioning; the forces are not unified and the Special Reconstruction Fund is not established, and millions of South Sudanese remain in refugee camps outside the country or in IDP camps,” RJMEC said. “The public financial management reforms remain largely undone; the transitional justice mechanisms are not established; and beyond the drafting of its legislation, the constitution-making process is not progressing as expected.”
RJMEC further noted that security is the foundation for building a nation and urged the unity government to 'make dedicated financial resources available for the completion of the much-delayed Transitional Security Arrangements, especially the graduation and redeployment of the unified forces.'
“Additionally, a clear plan of action to address the current dire humanitarian situation and the facilitation of voluntary returns of IDPs and repatriation of refugees is needed, while specific reforms that ensure the conduct of credible, free and fair elections at the end of a Transitional Period must be embarked on in earnest,” the statement added.
RJMEC urged the establishment of transitional justice mechanisms, especially the commission for truth, reconciliation, and healing, and the Hybrid Court for South Sudan without further delay.
“Accountability and justice are important building blocks for peace and reconciliation, and these mechanisms are a cornerstone in building accountability and the rule of law for the Republic of South Sudan,” according to RJMEC.
The press release said that with these pending tasks and the limited time left, renewed vigor, commitment, compromise, and political will are needed to deliver South Sudan that the R-ARCSS envisages.
“The implementation of the revitalized peace agreement remains the best hope for building durable and sustainable peace in South Sudan,” the statement concluded.