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ADDIS ABABA - 9 Feb 2018

Mini-committee unable to break deadlock at Addis talks, IGAD to make proposal

Members of the mini-committee formed Thursday at the ongoing peace talks in Addis Ababa were unable to break the deadlock over parliament and punitive measures against peace spoilers.

The mini-committee set up to find solutions to the deadlock on the two issues comprises of three members representing each stakeholder at the peace talks in Addis Ababa.

Officials and civil society activists attending the ongoing peace talks told Radio Tamazuj that the committee was unable to reach a consensus on the national legislature.

“The point of disagreement is that the government says the current national parliament cannot be dissolved and reconstituted, but it can be expanded instead,” an activist, who is part of the peace talks said.

“The opposition groups say the current national parliament should be dissolved and reconstituted per the size of the elected parliamentarians in April, 2010 elections. It means reduction of the parliamentary seats from 400 plus to 170 seats,” he added.

The officials pointed out that the rest of the delegates who were not part of the mini-committee met and discussed on the Judiciary yesterday. “The revitalization of article 12 on the judicial system went smoothly yesterday,” one of the officials said.

The South Sudanese officials revealed that the East African regional bloc IGAD would develop a proposal to South Sudan parties on the national parliament for signing today.

Edmund Yakai, a renowned South Sudanese civil society activist, said they are helping IGAD mediators by making suggestions for the best ways to reach a breakthrough.

Chapter 1, Article 11.1 of the 2015 peace agreement provides for the formation of transitional national legislative assembly comprising 400 members, including the prior 332 members and additional 50 members from SPLM-IO, 1 member from SPLM-FD, and 17 from other political parties.