SA supports efforts for consolidating peace in South Sudan

Friday, April 19, 2024

The South African government will continue to support the government and people of South Sudan as their country works towards “consolidating peace, democracy and development”.

This according to Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Dr Naledi Pandor, who was delivering remarks on behalf of President Cyril Ramaphosa during his working visit to the Northeast African country.

“We are here to express our support to the leadership and people of South Sudan on the ongoing efforts to consolidate peace, democracy and development, at this critical moment of the country’s history,” Pandor said.

The Minister commended South Sudan on the “historic” Revitalised Agreement on the Resolution of Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (R-ARCSS) which was signed in 2018 – bringing an end to conflict in that country which “almost derailed the prospects of building a stable, peaceful and prosperous country”.

“It has been five years since this peace agreement was signed. We are encouraged by the progress achieved thus far. The ceasefire agreement is holding and threats to the country’s peace and stability have been reduced. We believe that with the ongoing work in the establishment of the unified security forces for the country, the security situation will further improve.

“We are encouraged that the parties remain committed to the Revitalised Agreement as the most viable vehicle to address the root causes of the conflict and building sustainable peace in South Sudan,” Pandor said.

Upcoming elections

South Sudan is expected to hold national elections following a transitional period.

Ahead of this, the country’s National Elections Commission, Political Parties Council and the National Constitution Review Commission have been reconstituted.

Pandor said the elections will be a key moment for South Sudan.

“The people of South Sudan are eagerly waiting for the general elections which will bring the end of the transitional period. These elections will be a watershed moment in the country’s transition to democracy.

“I understand that parties are engaged in a dialogue in order to agree on the necessary conditions for the holding of credible elections. This will require addressing the outstanding provisions of the Revitalised Agreement such as the adoption of the permanent constitution and the security arrangements.

“Lasting peace, stability and development will depend on how the collective leadership navigate the challenging times ahead. The Revitalised Agreement is a very comprehensive commitment on how to take the country forward and the Parties to it must be applauded. Progress in the implementation of the provisions of the R-ARCSS is laudable. However, more work is still outstanding,” she said.

The Minister added that South Africa offers its support for the country.

“[We] are hopeful that the parties will continue to dialogue and find consensus on outstanding issues of the implementation of the Revitalised Agreement so that the people of South Sudan can look forward to a peaceful and democratic end to the transitional period.

“On behalf of my government and people of South Africa, we reiterate our commitment to support the South Sudanese as they go through the transitional period.

“We will provide every support possible within our means to ensure a democratic and peaceful end to the transitional period,” Pandor concluded. –