Home | Comment & Analysis    Saturday 28 June 2014

Federalism is the system South Sudan deserves


By John Clement Kuc Acol

June 28, 2014 - There are three major types of governments in place in the world today. The most prevalent is unitary system. In a unitary system, power is held at the national level, with little power being held in political subdivision such as provinces, counties, parishes, and towns.

Confederation system is a union of equal states, with some power being held at national level, generally, it has been found that conflicting interests lead to the break-down of confederation.

Federalism, the word federal originated from a Latin word call (fedeou) which means agreement or contract. In politics it is a system of government in which power is divided between a central authority and regional entities or provinces or states in this system there are powers which are exclusively belong tofederal government which it exercise all over the country for example, National Defense, Currency, Foreign Relations, Nationality, Passport and Immigration and the are powers belong to the states to exercise them at their states territorial for example health, education, roads within the state, construction and building and so on.

Country choose federalism for mainly two reasons.The diverse: when a country has many people with different races or cultures and background their co-existence become necessary under federal government and also the size of the country can be an other reason for a country to federal system of government specially when a country become to big to governed from the central.


Proponents argue that federalism does the following:

• Foster state loyalties: Many people feel close ties to their home stall and federalism maintains that connection by giving power to the states.
• Practices pragmatism: Running a country with a big size with such a diverse population (USA, Nigeria, SouthSudan Canada) is mush cashier to do if power is given to local official, likewise, state and local officials are closer to the problems of their areas, so it makes sense for them to choose policies to solve those problems.
• Creates laboratories of democracy: State governments can experiment with policies, and other states or federal government can learn from their success and failures.
• Leads to political stability: By removing the national government from some contentious issues areas and this can lead to stability.
• Encourage Pluralism: Federal system expand government on national, state and local levels, giving people more access to leadership and opportunities to get involved in their government.
• Ensures the separation of powers and prevent tyranny. Even if one person or group took control of all three branches of the federal government, federalism ensures that state governments would still function independently, federalism therefore fulfills the framers vision of governmental structure that ensure liberty.
• Reconciles a desire for overall unity with a desire for regional autonomy federalism is the bridge that can keep a country not to fall apart.

John Clement Kuc Acol is the Senior Lawyer in South Sudan, he can be reached at johnayuec@gmail.com

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  • 28 June 2014 14:57, by Fact Nonsense

    Well said. One by one makes bundle. This call for federalism must happen in RSS sooner than later because a lot of people are calling for it. Every day that passes, the demand is increasingly alarming and interesting. It’s the only way the government will solve the deep mistrust with its people but not rebels. However, it’s not a solution to current war unless the rebels have compromise to it.

    repondre message

    • 28 June 2014 15:30, by Fact Nonsense

      In my own observation, RSS issues are simple and the people of South Sudan are governable just like the rest of citizens in other countries if their views are dealt with accordingly without intimidations. The problems on the wall which requires immediate attention are;
      1. Intellectual clash among elites
      2. Deliberate ignorant portrayed by elites against electorate views
      3. Land grab

      repondre message

      • 28 June 2014 15:50, by Fact Nonsense

        4. Administrative clashed between central government and states
        5. Unfair composition of states
        6. Harassment and intimidation practice by all organised forces (National army, police, CID etc)
        7. Thievery at all levels of government

        The immediate solutions are;
        1. Intellectual mutual respect among elites and love for the nation will cause no harm to our country.

        repondre message

        • 28 June 2014 16:08, by Fact Nonsense

          2. There must be shift from the way elites looks at their electorate views and a need to accommodate electorate views and preach them at all levels of government.
          3. Land grab is practically unacceptable. It’s done through intimidating local communities of the land. Hence, the solution to land grab will only be solved if the capital is relocated away from affected state i.e Central Equatoria.

          repondre message

          • 28 June 2014 16:26, by Fact Nonsense

            4. Administrative clash can only be solved if states are given independent powers without interference from the central government, hence federal system will be fundamental here or otherwise.
            5. Creating more states out 10 states is also a healthy dose for stability in our country.
            6. Organised forces must be taught the laws of the nation.
            7. Corruption, embezzlement of funds, tribal preferences

            repondre message

            • 28 June 2014 16:36, by Fact Nonsense

              should be punished without fear or favour. Also the name of our country need to be change along with preferred system of governance. Therefore, if federalism takes over, then these issues need to be addressed and implemented immediately beforehand to avoid future crisis.

              repondre message

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