October 9, 2012 (JUBA) - South Sudan’s Warrap State on Tuesday said it has dissolved the leadership of its assembly, a week after passing a new law limiting the parliamentary terms served by the heads of the parliament’s specialised committees.
- Warrap State in red. Contested Abyei region in pink.
The house last week passed a conduct of business, a parliamentary law which regulates activities of the house including procedures involved in moving and seconding a motion.
The law abolishes a position of controller of the house and creates position of government chief whip appointed by the state governor after consultation with the house and MPs from South Sudan’s ruling party - the SPLM. Every member of Warrap’s 49 assembly are from SPLM.
It permits appointment of the 13 heads of the specialized committees and creates a women’s caucus.
Warrap State Speaker Madot Madut Deng on October 3 signed the act after it was unanimously passed by the house on 24 September. No counter motion against the law was made.
Speaker Deng told Sudan Tribune from Kuacjok, the capital of the state on Tuesday, that he had dissolved the house in accordance with the new law law and that he was expecting the new leadership of the committees to be put in place after the appointment of an SPLM chief whip.
“Yes. It is true the leadership has been dissolved. It was yesterday on Monday”; Deng told Sudan Tribune on Tuesday, explaining the new leadership would be appointed after consultations with members of the house and the executive organs in the state.
Ariec Mayar Ariec MP, who represents the Kuac area of Gogrial West County, confirmed the dissolution of the parliament’s leadership: “The leadership was dissolved on Monday and we voted today on how the new leadership should be formed. Two motions were raised. One was seeking nomination of the chairpersons from their respected counties and another seeks appointment of the speaker.”
The legislator said the results of the voting came out in support of the two choices.
“The results were equal. 18 people voted in favour of the motion that allows nomination to be done by the counties and there were also 18 people in support of the appointment by the speaker. So we returned to old procedure because it is in the constitution that when two motions get equal result, the house should use the old procedure which in this allows the speaker to appoint heads of the specialized committee”, Ariec explained on Tuesday.
There are 49 members of Warrap State parliament but only 36 MPs were present at the time of voting. This new system appears to be unique to Warrap. In other states the parliamentary leadership elect the leaders of committees.
He commended speaker for working hard to focus attention of the house to pressing issues of national importance.
“We are waiting to receive a budget presentation from the state ministry of finance. We have also been going to our respected counties to update our people on current affairs, about the ongoing talks in Ethiopia between [Sudan and South Sudan on post-partition issues] and on [the] austerity budget” caused by South Sudan’s oil shut down at the beginning of the year, he explained.