July 27, 2012 (JUBA) - Representatives of all the political parties and civil society groups in South Sudan have begun to consult on the formation of the National Elections Commission which will organise and oversee the upcoming 2015 general elections.
- Political parties leadership forum endorsing the parties draft bill, 2011, Juba, 26th Oct. (file photo/ST)
In accordance with the transitional constitution of South Sudan which came into being on 9 July 2011 when the new state got its independence, the National Elections Commission would be formed by the President of the Republic after consultations with the political parties and civil society organisations in the country.
In their consultative meeting on Thursday chaired by the Vice President, Riek Machar, who is also the deputy chairman of the ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) party, the political parties and civil society organisations agreed to forward their respective nominees on the selection of the membership of the commission.
This independent commission shall comprise of nine members who will be appointed by the President and confirmed by the national parliament.
The Vice President’s Press Secretary, James Gatdet Dak, told Sudan Tribune that the chairperson, deputy chairperson and chief electoral officer shall be appointed by the President as full time members from among the nine selected and appointed members.
Machar urged the political parties to also compare notes on their respective nominees for a possibility of agreeing on a nominee brought forward by another political party.
In line with the transitional constitution, the members are expected to be qualified independent personalities who shall not be influenced by government, state or public officers, political parties or candidates for office.
Further, the national elections act provides that a member shall be of proven integrity, independent, competent, non-partisan and impartial. He or she shall also be a person who has not been a candidate in general elections or an agent of a candidate.
The next meeting is scheduled to take place next Tuesday where the final list of nominees will be presented to the President Salva Kiir Mayardit who will pick the nine members from the submitted candidatures.