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Kiir announces new South Sudan ministries

August 21, 2011 (JUBA) - The President of the newly independent Republic of South Sudan Salva Kiir Mayardit on Saturday issued a decree listing the 29 ministries that will make up the country’s new cabinet.

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South Sudan President Salva Kiir lifts South Sudan’s new constitution to the crowds of people attending an independence ceremony in Juba, on Saturday July 9, 2011. (AP)

After South Sudan’s independence on July 9th Kiir issued a decree stating that all ministers would be caretakers until he formed a new government.

In the hotly anticipated announcement of the cabinet, Kiir may want to strike a careful balance to keep members of the ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) happy as well as catering for opposition groups who have criticised his previous appointments for lacking inclusiveness.

South Sudan’s largest opposition group, a breakaway faction of the SPLM, has criticised Kiir for not reflecting the political diversity of the country in his appointments.

Transforming the South Sudan Legislative Assembly from an autonomous body with Sudan into the lawmaking institution of the newly independent country has also proved has proved controversial. The first sitting of the reconstituted National Legislative Assembly (NLA) failed on August 1 to agree on the position of deputy speaker.

On August 5th Kiir had to intervene in a power struggle between Atem Garang the former deputy speaker of Sudan’s national parliament in Khartoum and the the deputy speaker in Juba, Daniel Awet Akot.

Garang, was made the chief whip a third position behind Akut who was reappointed as the deputy speaker.

As well as Garang, Kiir also amalgamated 96 members from Sudan’s National Assembly in Khartoum into the Juba parliament. As part of the 2005 peace deal, that allowed South Sudan to secede, the SPLM and Khartoum’s ruling National Congress Party shared power for six years until the deal ended with the separation of the South.

Kiir also appointed 66 new MPs on top of the 96 from Khartoum and the existing 170 southern lawmakers that had been elected in elections in April, bringing the total number to 332.

About 20% of the additional appointees come from other political parties. South Sudan has 23 political parties, but only five are included in the new bicameral national parliament.

On August 1st Kiir appointed the South Sudan Council of States, , the country’s second legislative chamber, which four days later elected Joseph Bul Chan at its speaker.

The 50-member Council consists of 20 representatives from SPLM drawn from all the 10 states of the country, and 30 additional members from “other categories”.


The Decree shall be cited as the Presidential Decree No. 26/2011 for the Establishment of the National Ministries of the Republic of South Sudan, 2011 and shall come into force upon its signature.

The following National Ministries shall be established in the Republic of South Sudan; and they are:

  1. Ministry of Cabinet Affairs
  2. Ministry of Defence and Veteran Affairs
  3. Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation
  4. Minister, Office of the President
  5. Minister for National Security, Office of the President
  6. Ministry of Justice
  7. Ministry of Interior
  8. Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs
  9. Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning
  10. Ministry of Labour, Public Service and Human Resource Development
  11. Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Investment
  12. Ministry of Information and Broadcasting
  13. Ministry of Health
  14. Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry
  15. Ministry of Roads and Bridges
  16. Ministry of Transport
  17. Ministry of General Education and Instruction
  18. Ministry of Higher Education, Science and Technology
  19. Ministry of Environment
  20. Ministry of Housing and Physical Planning
  21. Ministry of Telecommunication and Postal Services
  22. Ministry of Petroleum and Mining
  23. Ministry of Electricity and Dams
  24. Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare
  25. Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management
  26. Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation
  27. Ministry of Wildlife Conservation and Tourism
  28. Ministry of Animal Resources and Fisheries
  29. Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports