November 22nd 2017

World / East Africa

Peace remains elusive in South Sudan with over 3.5 million fleeing home

A National Dialogue, launched in May 2017, has seemingly not yet managed to reduce the intensity of the violence, while the country’s economic situation worsens. Whilst political dialogue is paramount, the security and economic drivers of the conflict need to be understood and addressed.

By Julius ChemiteiSaturday, 08 Jul 2017 15:57 EAT

South Sudanese holding peace promotion placard during the I CHOOSE PEACE FIRST campaign.

Just like any other country that has newly gotten independence, South Sudan has not been immune to what other African countries witnessed immediately after the exit of the West. Although this was not expected of a country which seceded from the larger Sudan Republic many still believe that the solution lies on the Sudanese themselves.

During a forum organized by Rift Valley Forum and the South Sudan Young Leaders Forum (SSYLF) highlighted on the need to bring in new leadership generation to the management of the South Sudanese economy and the economic Riya Williams Yuyada one of the officials to SSYLF says ‘its saddens me that the sunset generation has been there for decades and nothing much have they achieved in the conflict resolution process, it’s time we face out both the sunset and the mid general and the sunrise generation take over’’. This approach however may suffer set back because the sunrise generation is fighting in the militia established and funded by the sunset generation.

Alex de Waal, author of The Real Politics of the Horn of Africa Money, War and the Business of Power, shade light on what he calls it political marketplace in South Sudan and put clearly on how the situation is shaping the politics of South Sudan, as well as other countries in East Africa. Mr de Waal is fearing that most of the resources are being drained at the shadow of the ongoing conflict with the beneficiaries investing in neighboring countries Europe and the USA.

However SSYLF leadership has given possible economic reforms that may help to lift South Sudan out of the economic and political crisis among them setting up a SSRA South Sudanese Revenue Authority to monitor leakages on revenue collection, compel the current South Sudan Leadership to shun away from external borrowing and start to focus on the dates accrued from the conventional loans from the Kingdom of Qatar.

The Young leaders however are optimistic that the change of mediation team would boost the confidence of the two warring sides pointing out that many government officials were subject to bribery and that most of them have price tags attached to them hence compromising the peace and healing process due to lack of commitment by both sides,

Since hostilities began in South Sudan in 2013, over 3.5 million people have fled their homes, of which 1.8 million people have sought refuge from violence and food insecurity in neighboring countries. 

A National Dialogue, launched in May 2017, has seemingly not yet managed to reduce the intensity of the violence, while the country’s economic situation worsens. Whilst political dialogue is paramount, the security and economic drivers of the conflict need to be understood and addressed.

The writer, an experienced journalist, is a contributing reporter for the Kenya Free Press





Stay Connected