News / Africa

South Sudan Citizens Have Say on New Constitution

South Sudan's President Salva Kiir holds aloft the country's transitional constitution after signing it into law during Independence Day celebrations in Juba, July 9, 2011. (AP)South Sudan's President Salva Kiir holds aloft the country's transitional constitution after signing it into law during Independence Day celebrations in Juba, July 9, 2011. (AP)
x
South Sudan's President Salva Kiir holds aloft the country's transitional constitution after signing it into law during Independence Day celebrations in Juba, July 9, 2011. (AP)
South Sudan's President Salva Kiir holds aloft the country's transitional constitution after signing it into law during Independence Day celebrations in Juba, July 9, 2011. (AP)
Manyang David Mayar
— Residents in Jonglei state are having their say on what they think should be included in the new constitution of South Sudan, after the authorities extended the deadline for drafting the supreme law of the world's newest nation.

At a three-day dialogue in Bor, the capital of Jonglei, ordinary South Sudanese spoke about "what they need, the issues that they think should be addressed that are not addressed by the transitional constitution," said Henry Swaka, vice chair of Jonglei’s Civil Society Alliance and a member of the cosntitutional review committee set up to draft the key document.

South Sudan has been operating under a transitional constitution since it became  independent in July 2011.

President Salva Kiir launched the constitutional review process more than a year ago and the National Assembly last month extended the work of the committee reviewing the key piece of legislation to allow more input from ordinary citizens.

The extension came as the Sudd Institute, an independent research organization based in Juba, complained in a report that "little is known about the progress towards writing the permanent constitution to the world's newest nation."

"The process seems to be considered as the reserve of an exclusive select few and the public has very little or no contribution to and have not participated in the making of the supreme law of the country," the Sudd Institute wrote last month.

A report Monday from United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon criticized the slow pace of South Sudan’s constitutional reform process, but welcomed the opportunity for more citizen feedback.

More than 150 people are participating in the Bor workshop, where one of the key issues was how much power the central government should retain under the new constitution.

Women participants, meanwhile, called for the new constitution to include a minimum age for marriage to prevent girls being forced into unions they do not want.

Even though around half of South Sudanese girls between 15 and 19 are married, according to a recent Human Rights Watch report, the issue is not addressed in the transitional constitution.

Jonglei is the eighth state to take part in talks to reform the constitution.

You May Like

Is Air Travel Safe?

Aviation expert says despite tragic losses of Malaysian Airlines flights 370 and 17, industry experienced lowest fatality rate in recorded history last year More

Multimedia 100 Days Later, Nigerian Girls Still Held

Activists holding rallies in Nigeria and several other countries to mark 100th day of captivity for more than 200 schoolgirls being held by Boko Haram More

Chocolate Too Bitter? Swap Sugar for Mushrooms

US food technology company develops fermentation process using mushrooms to reduce bitterness in cocoa beans, believes it will cut sugar content in candy More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israeli
X
Carolyn Presutti
July 23, 2014 1:21 AM
The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israel

The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video NASA Focuses on Earth-Like Planets

For decades, looking for life elsewhere in the universe meant listening for signals that could be from distant civilizations. But recent breakthroughs in space technology refocused some of that effort toward finding planets that may harbor life, even in its primitive form. VOA’s George Putic reports on a recent panel discussion at NASA’s headquarters, in Washington.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.

AppleAndroid