Norwegian Special Envoy to South Sudan and Sudan said on Friday the conditions for holding free and fair elections in the country are currently not in place.
Jon Anton Johnson said for South Sudan to conduct its first successful general elections, there is need to implement the security arrangements, and open political and civic space.
The diplomat also called on the government to speed up the reconstitution of the National Elections Commission and the Political Parties Council.
He added that the country should meet all the pre-requisites for the conduct of elections.
“It is extremely important to have a conducive environment, to open up the political and civic space, it is a clear pre-condition,” the visiting envoy said speaking in Juba.
“It is worrying, and the implementation of the peace agreement is lagging behind. For the time being, the conditions for holding the elections are not in place, so a lot of things have to be done and political decisions have to be made and implemented.”
“And there is of course a matter of how this [elections] is organized when it comes to security. There is a risk of increased violence and we should not underestimate that.”
Special Envoy Anton said he emphasized the need to speed up the implementation of the revitalized peace agreement to President Salva Kiir and First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar.
According to the diplomat, the leaders assured him of their commitment to the peace implementation.
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