South Sudan’s Crisis: Weighing the Cost of the Stalemate in the Peace Process
Author: Jok Madut Jok
Organization: The Sudd Institute
Type: Policy Briefs
This analysis weighs the cost of the stalemate of the South Sudanese peace process. It suggests that the stalemate is costly, and that the solution to the current crisis lies with the warring parties, the South Sudanese citizenry, and the international community. However, the peace processes lack genuine intent to end the carnage, as the warring parties appear fixated on political and military gains.
Whatever the nature of the agreement will be, however, no peace agreement will bring peace to South Sudan. While the conflict is rooted in the lackluster state-building and nation-building programs, corruption, insecurity and injustice prevailing in the country since 2005, there is no denying that the events of December 15, 2013 were the tipping point, and patching them up in a quick fix style of peace agreements will not cut it this time, even if the principal parties sign a peace agreement. Any peace agreement that does not commit the warring parties to programs of institutional reforms, justice and accountability, national dialogue, healing and reconciliation programs, security sector enhancement, stricter oversight of financial institutions, the constitution and democratic processes, would be as good as an agreement to continue the war.
Jok Madut Jok is trained in the anthropology of health and holds a Ph.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). He is a fellow of Rift Valley Institute and Director of the Sudd Institute. Jok has held fellowship positions at a number of other institutions, including the United States Institute of Peace and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. He also served in the Government of South Sudan as undersecretary in the Ministry of Culture and Heritage for three years. He has also worked in aid and development and author of four books and numerous articles covering gender, sexuality and reproductive health, humanitarian aid, ethnography of political violence, gender-based violence, war and slavery, and the politics of identity in South Sudan and Sudan. His book Breaking Sudan: The Search for Peace, was published in 2017 by OneWorld.