Home | News    Tuesday 6 October 2015

South Sudan government defends 28 states unilaterally decreed by Kiir


October 5, 2015 (JUBA) – South Sudanese government has defended President Salva Kiir’s unilateral establishment order which expanded the country’s 10 states to 28, saying the move was legal.

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South Sudanese president Salva Kiir speaks at a public rally in Juba on 18 March 2015 (Photo: AP/Jason Patinkin)

Presidential Legal Advisor Lawrence Korbandy said an amendment bill will be tabled in parliament to change article 161 in Transitional Constitution of South Sudan 2011. Article 161 defines South Sudan as a territory composed of ten states.

“This order will be effective only after 30 working days,” said Korbandy, speaking in a briefing to representatives of foreign diplomats on Monday in Juba.

“This [thirty days period] is to give a time for the parliament to look at the order as per clause five of the authority of this order which empowers the president to initiate process to constitutional amendment. We have not violated our own constitution,” he said.

He said the decision to create more states is “actually a response to calls of our citizens,” as the government was trying to sell the decision to representatives of various countries.

“In Equatoria there is absolute call for federal system. In Bahr al Ghazal; the same. In Upper Nile; the same,” he added and described the order “a problem solving document given the geopolitics of our country.”

The government move surprised the armed opposition which said creating more states is a violation of the agreement signed in August twenty months of the conflict. The peace agreement is based on the current 10 states and deferred the process of federalism and creation of more states to the constitutional making process during the transitional period of 30 months.

The armed opposition faction led by former vice president, Riek Machar, said the 28 states’ creation after the peace deal will affect many provisions in the peace deal and open up the agreement for further negotiations.

The new 28 states will change the power sharing formula, restructure and increase the number of executive organ and appointment of new members to state legislative assemblies. It will also affect the membership of the national legislature. All of these, the opposition say, would need renegotiation to determine the composition and representation.

They also said the creation of the new states needs agreement on the number of states to be created, the basis for their creation and when they should come into effect, all of which would be handled by the government of national unity in accordance with the peace deal.

But information minister Michael Makuei Lueth said the agreement does not halt the president from performing his duties.

“The agreement says the government of Upper Nile shall be from the SPLM IO. If Upper Nile is divided into 10 states, that same provision will continue to apply on all the new states,” said Lueth, speaking alongside Korbandy.

He said the rational will apply in Upper Nile and Jonglei where the opposition will have 40% of the executive power share.

“So I didn’t see anywhere where we can come and say the agreement has been violated. Instead, it [the peace agreement] has been enriched,” he said.

Diplomats questioned why the unilateral decision was suddenly made after the peace agreement was signed by the parties. The head of European delegation in Juba, Stefano De Leo, inquired why the order was being announced when the agreement was just signed. But information minister Lueth insisted that the agreement “does not tight the hands of the president.”

“There is no provision in the agreement that tights down the hands of the president from rendering services and serve the interest of his people. The president is acting in accordance with provisions of the law,” he said.

Analysts say the move aims at appeasing loyalists of the president in Upper Nile, Unity and Jonglei states.

The war divided the country along tribal lines, pinning the largest tribes of Dinka and Nuer where President Kiir and rebel leader Riek Machar hail.


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  • 6 October 2015 07:32, by Paul Chadrack

    every state should use its own resources, no more sharing of wealth gain. where will the dry hungry bhar el gazel get the resources. many bhar el gazels are now dancing the creation of more states, without resources the dancing will turn into crying.

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    • 6 October 2015 07:36, by Mapuor


      Hahahah,there is nothing called Bhar El Gazal in the 28 states.Be specific.What state do you think is dry.If you are talking of rainfall,the average annual rainfall of greater Bhar El Gazal region is 1000 mm while that of greater Equatoria is 900 mm(Consider arid areas of Taposa).

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  • 6 October 2015 07:33, by Mapuor

    All South Sudanese have fully supported the formation of 28 states,in fact it is a popular demand.Any one who opposes the formation of 28 states will be cursed by all South Sudanese.All communities who were suffocating under local tyrants have now breath in fresh air.Each community will now develop their language and culture freely.

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    • 6 October 2015 09:11, by Mr Point

      KIir does not have power under the Constitution to create new states by decree - Article 162.

      If this goes ahead then South Sudanese people can not expect peace, freedom and constitutional government from an untrustworthy leader.

      Kiir has not kept to any agreement he has signed.

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      • 6 October 2015 15:26, by Hardlinner

        so mr point what r u gonna do, fight 90% of south sudanese?. i really don’t know why nuer of riek r against Kiir proposal?. this proposal will atleast allow minorities to govern themselves. other than lack of resources, i believe Kiir is best solution to end riek madness. atleast at this point riek will confine his madness at nuer areas. we won’t give a damn whether Riek declare himself..

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      • 6 October 2015 15:32, by Hardlinner

        cont. the king of nuer. era of dominating other ethnicities is coming to an end. Riek supporters are nuer in element therefore shouldn’t matter to any one. so Riek followers should kill themselves or F*ckoff.

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  • 6 October 2015 07:40, by Son of Ngundeng

    Dear All:
    That was all alcoholic degree, where the Jieng council of thieves making wrong deal which will affect them tomorrow in the nearest future. The peace deals will remain as its the IO will still holding Upper Nile and Unity as it was there in Agreement, if not we will go back to war.

    Son of Prophet
    in front line Pathay Jonglei

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    • 6 October 2015 07:47, by Mapuor

      Son of Nguondeng
      No bluffing this time.All Nyagats must go to their states.If you reject your states because you can not manage yourselves without Dinkas that will be up to you. Dinkas were indeed the bread winners for Nuers in greater Upper Nile.We are tired of you and have finally decided to leave you alone.Just rule in your five states.

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    • 6 October 2015 09:21, by Mr Point

      Kiir has found a new way to show his incompetence.

      It is immediately clear this 28 state division is unworkable. He hasn’t fixed the national borders in four years. How long will it take Kiir to set the internal unworkable borders?

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  • 6 October 2015 07:41, by Mapuor

    All states will still get some money from the national government.Poor states who depend on cheap agricultural crops will indeed face it hard.Cattle keepers who practice mixed farming will be far well off than those states that depend absolutely on cheap crops.

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    • 6 October 2015 08:11, by Malakal county Simon

      This creations of 28 states without public consultations, is use-less and divisive..... Separating tribes from each other is not a solution, to the current crisis...... I,m worries that Shilluk tribe, is a victim here for not being granted for the State of their own from their Dinka rival......

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      • 6 October 2015 08:20, by Malakal county Simon


        The annexing of Pigi county from Jonglie State, is a clear signs plan, as if they form a Majority in Malakal State they than can take the Shilluk Land by force as they are eyeing for Malakal to be annex to the Dinka Ngok in the future......

        We all know it, and this is why I called it a useless and divisive proposal that’s anyone with the sound minded should not entertains this nonsense!

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    • 6 October 2015 09:27, by Paul Chadrack

      all the so call kiir 28 state should generate their resources, no more the so call central government controlling resources this time. where will the corrupt bhar el gazel go.

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  • 6 October 2015 07:54, by Akuma

    We all welcome the establishment of new states only waiting our new governors to begin their work. No more talk over it

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    • 6 October 2015 08:20, by Panda Odhie

      Those who are dying because of the formation are the rebels lord and his supporters, if you move around to collect the data everybody is happy, so why Riek can’t agreed with what is done,he is not the South Sudan just a rebel, criminal and that is old,let them cry but it is already done whether he want or not ,thanks Mr president

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      • 6 October 2015 08:23, by Malakal county Simon

        Good luck with that nonsense mate, because no one is buying it!!!!

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        • 6 October 2015 09:48, by Panda Odhie

          If you refused to go and run your own states than you are sick in mind, do you want Jesus to and form them to you in order to believe him. It is done and there is no reverse, if you don’t want to go to your states it is up to who refused.Thanks Mr president

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          • 6 October 2015 10:42, by Malakal county Simon

            It’s seems to me that your empty head did not implied to what I was saying above, instead, you’re jumping up and down without knowing where I,m coming from....... Anyway, my arguments is not about rejecting of useless 28 States, in fact, I was arguing that’s there is a reason behind it as I mentioned the case of Malakal, as a one them....... I hope you understand now where I,m coming from.......

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  • 6 October 2015 10:27, by DHARCHEP

    Some people especially Nuer community are shouting for the creation of 18 States. Why people didn’t shout when Riek Machar created 21 States? On my side, I have nothing to said. I wasn’t expected that Ruweng comprising Six Sub-Clan namely: Mijuan, Amaal, Abaang, Manteeng, NgongChill and Thiyeer will become a State. Dinka Ruweng Community of Biemnom(Abiemnom)Oyee, SPLA/SPLM oyee, Salva Kiir Oyee.

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  • 6 October 2015 10:35, by DHARCHEP

    May Almighty God bless Ruweng land of Dinka Ruweng Community of Biemnom. Biemnom(Abiemnom)county oyee, SPLA Oyee, Salva Kiir Miyardit Oyee, Paramount Chief of Dinka Ruweng Community of Biemnom County, Bol Mayiik Oyee.

    This is Dharchep Miyar,from Ruweng Community of Biemnom in Ruweng State. I am proud to be a Native Ruweng. God bless Ruweng land. I can be reached at ruwengbiemnom@rocketmail.com

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  • 6 October 2015 15:39, by Son of Upper Nile

    This is Jungle Council of Evils (JCE) idea, Jieng granny politicians have made this plot. Why annexing rich in mineral Raja to the home of mathiang anyor. There is nothing called Western Nile as Chollo kingdom land remain one. If Smart Arabs, Turks & British couldn’t divide it. Do you think primitive Jenge can do? Why annexing rich Maban to be Jieng minority? & refusing the same for Pigi & Rweng

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    • 6 October 2015 15:43, by Son of Upper Nile

      I loved when I saw 3 counties of BHG Jenge each made as a state to increase Jenge states

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