NAS Policy Document on Federalism: A foreword by Chairman Thomas Cirillo

Ahead of the planned release of the official NAS policy document on federalism later this week entitled “Federalism for a peaceful and prosperous South Sudan – The federal model of South Sudan“, the Chairman and C-in-C of the National Salvation Front issued the following foreword.

My dear fellow South Sudanese,

It gives me profound pleasure to present to you this strategic policy document on Federalism, which is a long-tested and proven system of governance for many countries across the world. The purpose of this document is to inform the people of South Sudan about the type of federalism South Sudan needs, why it is needed now, and how to implement it in order to realise sustainable peace and good governance in the country. The Federal Model of South Sudan, described in this document is proposed as the most viable option to address the current political, ethnic, cultural, social and economic factors that constitute the root causes of the conflict in South Sudan.

As far as governance is concerned in South Sudan, federalism has been a key demand of our people over the past few decades. It is a historical quest of our people since before independence of Sudan in 1956, and it is continuing to-date post-independence of South Sudan in 2011. Federalism, therefore, forms an important pillar of the National Salvation Front’s aim to build a state that is accommodative of our diversities regardless of gender, religion, or ethnicity. A genuine, well-intentioned and well-implemented federal system of governance will go a long way towards building a participative, people-based democratic system that will address many of the root causes of conflict in our country. Scores of countries around the world are governed under some form of federalism and are reaping its fruits, top of which is continuation of sustained peace.

Our people have been through a lot and are continuing to suffer because of poor governance. The current leadership in the country, unfortunately, has long abandoned the cause of the people who sacrificed so much over so many years, and on whose behalf they are meant to run the country. They have completely lost their moral compass and are instead bent on frustrating the will of the people by setting up a system of governance that continues to disenfranchise the general masses and centralise power in the hands of a violent, corrupt, self-seeking and kleptocratic clique. Their whole aim is to avoid accountability so that they can continue to loot resources at the expense of progress, development and prosperity for our people. This has led us to the current state where our economy is in tatters, millions of our people are displaced and driven out of the country and thousands have lost their lives. It is a total betrayal of the cause for which many of our people, heroes and heroines, sacrificed their lives.

The National Salvation Front is offering an alternative; a vision aimed at transforming governance in our country, so that our people realise the benefits of the independent state for which they sacrificed so much and fought for so long. The proposed federal system of governance offers a way out of the current political turbulence, the near-total collapse of our social fabric and venomous atmosphere riddled with animosity and ethnic intolerance. It is an important part of NAS’ mission to rid the country of injustice and oppression, and restore unity, dignity and power to the people of South Sudan. In pursuit of this noble undertaking to realise a republic where citizens live in freedom, security, harmony and tranquillity; where there is justice, equality and rule of law, we mobilised able and competent sons and daughters of South Sudan to put together this document to augment our knowledge and impart an appreciation of its necessity. This document sets out a realistic and credible model of federalism applicable to our country that is aimed at informing the debate on, and forming the basis of, a future system of governance for the Republic of South Sudan β€” following an extensive consultative and constitutional reform process. It is a product of protracted research, popular discourse and dialogue among specialists of various fields as well as NAS’ membership. Such a federal system, if implemented with rigour and good faith, would take South Sudan to a different level; restore the goodwill of the International Community and our rightful place in the community of nations.

NAS takes governance seriously, as it is the prerequisite of progress. Using the wrong system of governance is like building a house on a weak and unstable foundation. This is the impetus for dedicating time to producing this document. It is, therefore, my hope that after reading it, you will come to appreciate our good intentions and ambitions; that we are genuinely seeking lasting solutions; solutions that work for the promotion of our unity in diversity, peace, stability and prosperity for all; solutions that will re-claim our country from the abyss that it has fallen into.

Thanks, and appreciations to all members of the NAS Strategic Policy Secretariat, all other NAS National Committees, NAS Senior Leadership Team, and NAS members who participated in the development of this document for their contribution and dedication in this process. Also, we would like to thank all our members who attended a number of NAS workshops dedicated to the subject of Federalism and those who helpfully commented on and reviewed the final draft. Without your collective support and inputs, we wouldn’t have been able to accomplish this task.

Thank you very much and the struggle continues for a peaceful and prosperous South Sudan!

Β Our People will rise again. May God bless South Sudan

Gen. Thomas Cirillo Swaka,
Chairman and Commander-in-Chief,
National Salvation Front/Army (NAS)
05 March 2020

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  1. 28th October 2020

    […] This historic and strategic 90-plus-paged document entitled “Federalism for a Peaceful and Pro…Β  This official public release of the full version comes with an updated foreword by NAS Chairman and Commander-in-Chief Gen Thomas Cirillo. […]