News / Africa

Top Southern Sudanese Official Says Underdeveloped Institutions Could Hinder Credible National Elections

A top Southern Sudanese official says the country’s institutions will play a critical role in the upcoming general election.

A Sudanese opposition supporter shouts slogans as protesters wave the flag of Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) during a demonstration against the government in Khartoum, 07 Dec 2009
A Sudanese opposition supporter shouts slogans as protesters wave the flag of Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) during a demonstration against the government in Khartoum, 07 Dec 2009

Multimedia

Audio
  • Luka Biong Deng,Southern Sudan's Minister of Presidential Affairs Spoke with Clottey

Peter Clottey

A top Southern Sudanese official says the country’s institutions will play a critical role in the upcoming general election.

Minister of Presidential Affairs Luka Biong Deng said underdeveloped institutions could undermine the credibility of the vote, which is scheduled for April 11-13.

There is concern about the police, security agencies, the judiciary, the National Electoral Commission and others, he said.

“I think these institutions are quite critical,” said Deng.  “As you know, all the executives of these institutions are appointed as (part) of the power sharing agreement between the National Congress Party and the SPLM (Sudan People’s Liberation Movement).

Salva Kiir (L) VP and President of South-Sudan in Nairobi
Salva Kiir (L) VP and President of South-Sudan in Nairobi

In the case of the National Electoral Commission, he said, “It’s quite critical [that it be trusted] to oversee the conduct of elections and ensure [a credible vote].”

During its years of independence, said Deng, Sudan has never held a transparent election.

Shortly after taking power in 1989, leaders of the new military government closed down all of Sudan’s executive and legislative governmental institutions.

They also suspended the constitution, arrested many prominent civilian politicians, banned all political parties and partisan political activity and restricted freedom of the press.

“I think we have been seeing either dictatorial or military systems, and even if elections were conducted, they were not really to the spirit of democracy.... This is the first time that the people of Sudan are going to witness…a free election.”

Some observers say Sudan’s successive military takeovers have largely contributed to the lack of development in the country’s institutions.

Soon after the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the north and the south, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) launched a number of projects to improve Sudan’s institutions.

As part of the effort, the UNDP recruited 43 volunteers to help develop more than 75 government institutions and universities, as well as organizations in the private sectors in both northern and southern Sudan.

Analysts credit the national government, led by President Hassan al-Bashir, and the semi-autonomous Government of Southern Sudan, led by President Salva Kiir, for encouraging Sudanese expatriates to volunteer their experience to help strengthen national and state institutions.

The SPLM is working closely with the ruling National Congress Party, as well as other parties and the security agencies, to provide a secure environment that will facilitate a credible vote, said Deng.

You May Like

UN Watchdog Urges Israel to Probe Possible Gaza War Crimes

More than 2,100 Palestinians, most of them civilians, were killed in a 51-day war in Gaza, along with 67 Israeli soldiers and six civilians in Israel More

New Kenyan 'Thin SIMs' Poised to Transform African Mobile Money

Equity's new technology is approved in African nation for one-year trial, though industry leader Safaricom says thin SIMs could lead to data theft and fraud More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power 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.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid