Source: United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) |

United Nations (UN) builds stakeholder capacities on elections awareness

The training successful galvanized each stakeholder to understand the roles expected of them throughout the electoral cycle

WESTERN BAHR EL GHAZAL, South Sudan, June 4, 2024/APO Group/ --

As the world’s youngest nation, South Sudan, seeks to complete its democratic transition by conducting free, fair and credible elections in December this year, the United Nations is supporting the process.

A recent three-day training facilitated by the UN’s Integrated Electoral Assistance Team (IEAT) aimed to build capacities among relevant stakeholders in Western Bahr El Ghazal on electoral administration and management.

“I am very happy to have participated in this training because I now have a clear understanding of an electoral process and what it entails to conduct elections,” said Makuac Wek Makuac, a youth representative. “I have also been empowered on the need for widespread civic education and I will pass on my learning to my peers so that we can have peaceful elections,” he added.

Makuac was one of 25 participants drawn from state institutions, civil society organizations, and media partners who were educated on legal frameworks governing elections, gender considerations, disability rights and barriers to equal access during election processes.

Apart from presentations, group discussions enabled the participants to consolidate their voices on the importance of voter education and recommend ways of expanding civic participation.

“It is a fact that women constitute more than half the population of South Sudan,” stated Shidihan Siddig of the Justice and Peace Commission. “It’s, therefore, imperative that we are not left behind when the time comes to vote,” she stressed, while expressing her determination to educate women on the importance of participating in elections.

The training successful galvanized each stakeholder to understand the roles expected of them throughout the electoral cycle.

For Peter Morkobi Gabriel the state human rights advisor, it is critical to ensure that civic and political rights which are fundamental human rights are enjoyed by all.

“This workshop has given us additional knowledge to ensure that any election conducted in South Sudan is inclusive,” declared Peter Morkobi. “Persons with disabilities, women, the elderly, we will see to it that no one is left behind during this process,” he stated.

Despite confirmed delays in the implementation of benchmarks enshrined in the Revitalized Peace Agreement, it was an enthusiastic group of participants who went home after the three-day training, confident that come December 2024, the population will go to the polls to choose their leaders.

Mr. Morkobi thinks therefore, that this important training should be extended to other key actors.

“We appreciate the UN for empowering us through this training and hope they will extend it to uniformed personnel so that, they too can understand their role in respecting civil and political space and ensuring peace and security.”

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS).