Opinion: One decree to spoil the whole transition…

“President Salva Kiir has appointed a new minister of Defense and Veterans Affairs. Chol Thon Balok, a member of the SPLM replaces Angelina Teny who was relieved early this month. The changes were announced in a Republican Order read last evening on state broadcaster” (Radio Miraya, 30.03.2023).

Has there been a slow train coming in Juba, South Sudan. That slow train has been reforms and been implementation of the R-ARCSS – Peace Agreement, which was first signed and secured in December 2018. Since then, there been several of deadlines, postponements and lack of process or work on the implementation of the R-ARCSS. That’s why things are moving super slow or if it is moving at all.

President Salva Kiir Mayardit has been in-charge, the head of state and the commander in chief. He has ruled the republic by decree and seems to be comfortable with that. The President has the last say and can enact whatever he feels like. That’s how it looks and in this regard. He does it…

While doing so, there are ramifications and pushback. The President is questioned for his action to sack a minister and appoint another one. Especially, when the Minister is from another party and another signatory to the R-ARCSS. There are stipulations and agreements involved, which limits the scopes of the Republican Orders or the Presidential Decrees. Because, he has to be in-line with the articles and agreements, which he has signed in past.

It is maybe a few years ago and the times are changing. Maybe Kiir finds it best to have all security details and oversight within SPLM-IG. While the SPLM/A-IO wanted this role and have this influential ministry. Alas, here is the issue… it was done without consultation and later not settled after the sacking. The President just bought himself time and played around with Machar. Just to show him who has the power and who is the underdog. Kiir really just proved a point and Machar got nothing to show for it.

This Transitional Government seems to be a forever entity. Kiir don’t want to be challenged or questioned in office. He just wants to rule and give plum jobs to his allies. The President just want to feed his pocket and call it a night. That’s how this looks and it evident of it too.

Kiir knows perfectly well that this would cause a stir and be an issue. He is not only toying around with SPLM/A-IO role in the Transitional Government, but he sacked the wife of Machar. That was just bound to cause havoc and become a hectic quick. Not like Kiir sacked a random general or a run-of-the-mill mouthpiece of another party. No, he sacked the wife of the leader of one of the parties. By doing this… he knew he would cause problems and possibly create a quagmire.

Part of me believes this is a scheme of Kiir to prolong and waste more time. Just so the signatories need more meetings and address the concerns. In the end, it will mean another deal and agreement, which gives further stipulations and regulation of power. While we know at any moment another Republican Order can be announced and create a new problem. That’s just the way these things go…. Peace.

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