A New Dawn Hangs On The Horizon  As South Sudan Concludes Conference.



South Sudan has concluded a vital conference on it's a bumpy road to peace and bringing warring factions of President Salva Kir and his nemesis Vice President Riek Machar together to forge a new beginning for the youngest nation. The Conference which was originally conceived in 2017 intends to unite a polarised country and reconcile sharp political differences that have manifested since it got its Independence. 

Under the Leadership of President Salva Kiir, the Conference intends to chart a new path for the country by striking a compromise and making concessions to stabilise the country. The issues top on the agenda included a suggestion for two presidential terms per holder, appointing South Sudanese with dual citizenship to senior government offices, and return of the country to 32 states. There were also long-standing and pressing issues that included cattle rustling, land tenure, as well as more critical concerns like whether the country should adopt a federal system.

The conference attracted representatives from grassroots to regional levels to generate broad-based consensus and legitimacy that will be vital for it’s implementation.  At the final national event that ended on Wednesday, 4th December, more than 500 representatives from various communities and political parties were present with President Kiir pledging that the resolutions will be incorporated in the permanent constitution. However, there are genuine fears by analysts that leaders are going to be reluctant to implement resolutions and commitments of the Conference now that there is a semblance of stability.

Observers say South Sudanese government has had a documented record of abrogating previous commitments and the optimism for honouring present obligations hangs in balance. The criticism stems from the fact that if the government is unable to implement a broader peace agreement that looks at the National Dialogue as a sub-component of the peace process, then how can it implement the dialogue resolutions.  As the country negotiates a deal to deliver her from a violent past and usher in an era of peace and stability, stakes remain high.






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