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South Sudan Gov’t says elections to be conducted under the transition constitution

Michael Makuei Lueth, minister of information and telecommunication gestures during media
briefing in Juba on Friday.

By Simon Deng
The Minister of Information, Telecommunication and Postal Services, Michael Makuei Lueth
said the current Transitional National Legislative Assembly (TNLA) has no powers to enact the
permanent constitution because it’s members were never elected.
He said during press conference on Friday that the 2024 elections will instead be held under the
transitional constitution 2011. The permanent constitution is expected to replace the latter
once it is enacted by an elected TNLA.
“The upcoming 2024 election will be based on the current transitional constitution as the
blotted transitional national legislative assembly has no power to draft the permanent
constitution,” Makuei said in Juba.

“The current parliament does not represent the people of South Sudan and as such they need
to go, we need to go for election. The people of South Sudan should be given the opportunity
to elect their representatives and it is the representatives of the people who will come and pass
the (permanent) constitution,” he added.
He downplayed suggestions by the opposition and the international community who have been
calling for the speeding of the constitutional-making process to enact permanent constitution
to guarantee free, fair and credible elections.

“There are people who think that let us take the (peace) agreement as it is, and let us first go in
for the permanent constitution, this permanent constitution is a process, we call it permanent
constitution and there is nothing permanent about it,” Makuei said.
He revealed that the recently amended national election bill 2023 grants President Salva Kiir
powers to appoint special interest and minority groups to the national legislative assembly,
adding that the permanent constitution will be drafted by the upcoming national legislative
“Since constitution making is a process then we do not need to hurry up with it so that we can
have a constitution, now for us to come up with permanent constitution it needs to be
prepared and passed by the representatives of the people,” Makuei said.

The national election bill 2023 was passed on Monday this week amid protest by the largest
opposition Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-in opposition (SPLM-IO) led by First Vice
President, Riek Machar because of the amendments giving excessive powers to President Kiir to
appoint more members into the house.
The initial election bill prior to amendments made by the SPLM leaning MPs provided for 250
law makers but the amended election bill will see this number rise to 332 law makers.

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