Constitutional Reform: Sudan Comprehensive Peace Agreement

Chapter II: Power Sharing (Signed at Naivasha, Kenya on 26th May, 2004)

2.12 Constitutional Review Process

2.12.4.2 A representative National Constitutional Review Commission shall be established, as is more fully described below, which shall within six (6) weeks of receipt of the Agreement prepare a Legal and Constitutional Framework ("The Constitutional Text");

2.12.4.3 The National Constitutional Review Commission shall be comprised of the NCP, SPLM and representatives of such other political forces and civil society as agreed by the Parties. Such composition shall be reflected in the final Peace Agreement.

2.12.5 The National Constitutional Review Commission shall have as its first task the preparation of a Legal and Constitutional Framework text in the constitutionally appropriate form, based on the Peace Agreement and the current Sudan Constitution, for adoption by the National Assembly. The same text shall be presented to the SPLM National Liberation Council for adoption. In the event of a contradiction, the terms of the Peace Agreement shall prevail in so far as that contradiction exists.

2.12.6 Without prejudice to the provisions of 2.12.5 above, the National Constitutional Review Commission in the preparation of the Legal and Constitutional Framework Text, shall draw upon relevant experiences and documents as may be presented by the Parties.

2.12.7 Upon adoption by the National Assembly and the SPLM National Liberation Council, the Constitutional Text shall become the Interim National Constitution for the Sudan during the Interim Period.

2.12.8 Pending the adoption of the Constitutional Text, the Parties agree that the legal status quo in their respective areas shall remain in force.

2.12.9 The National Constitutional Review Commission shall also be required to prepare such other legal instruments as is required to give effect to the Peace Agreement. It shall provide in such draft statutes or in the Constitutional Text for the appointment and other mechanisms to ensure the independence of such National Institutions as are referred to in Section 2.10 herein.

2.12.10 Without prejudice to the provisions of the Peace Agreement, as a subsequent task and during the course of the six-year Interim. Period, the national Constitutional Review Commission shall be responsible for organizing an inclusive Constitutional Review Process. The process must provide for political inclusiveness and public participation.

2.12.11 Without prejudice to the functions of the State Legislatures, the National Constitutional Review Commission shall prepare model Constitutions for the States, subject to compliance with the National Constitution, and, as relevant, the Constitution of Southern Sudan.

2.12.12 The National Ministry of Justice shall, with the assistance of concerned attorneys, declare the compatibility of the constitution of Southern Sudan with the Interim National Constitution, and also declare the compatibility of the constitutions of the States with the Interim National Constitution and, as appropriate, with the constitution of Southern Sudan. Upon such declaration, the same constitutions shall be signed by the head of the appropriate level of government.

Implementation History

2005

Full Implementation

On 23 April 2005, the National Constitutional Review Commission (NCRC) was formed. The NCRC had 60 members. The National Congress Party and the SPLM had insisted “on applying general power-sharing quotas agreed upon in the January deal, which give them 52 percent and 28 percent of the seats, respectively, leaving other parties a paltry 20 percent and no power to block decisions.”1 A few opposition parties were said not to take part in the constitution drafting process. Nevertheless, drafting of the interim constitution moved quickly upon the arrival of SPLM political advisors in Khartoum.2 The commission started its work on 30 April and was expected to complete its task within six weeks. The Sudanese opposition block, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), after signing a landmark agreement with Khartoum in Cairo in June 2005 also joined the constitution drafting process. It nominated 27 members to participate in the NCRC.3 The draft interim constitution was adopted by the National Assembly and the SPLM National Liberation Council on 6 July 2005. The constitution came into effect on 9 July 2005.4

The drafting of the Interim Constitution of Southern Sudan started separately. The 40-member Southern Sudan Constitution Drafting Committee (SSCDC) – representing SPLM (28 members), NCP (six members) and other Southern political parties (six members) - was set up to draft Interim Constitution of Southern Sudan. The draft constitution was prepared by the 14 member SPLM technical committee. The Committee submitted its draft to First vice President Salva Kiir. On 17 September 2005, the Minister of Justice formed a committee which examined the compatibility of the draft constitution with the Interim National Constitution (INC). By the end of October, the draft constitution was approved by the Transitional Southern Sudan Legislative Assembly. After the National Ministry of Justice verified the ICSS’ compatibility with the INC on 24 November 2005, the ICSS was signed into law on 5 December 2005.5

  • 1. "Sudan Sets up Constitution Committee," Agence France Presse, April 23, 2005.
  • 2. "Sudan People's Liberation Movement political advisor arrives in Khartoum," BBC Monitoring Middle East, April 29, 2005.
  • 3. "Sudan opposition bloc to join constitution drafting process," Agence France Presse, June 21, 2005.
  • 4. "The CPA Monitor-Monthly report on the Implementation of the CPA," UNMIS, March 2006.
  • 5. Ibid.
2006

Full Implementation

Constitution reform took place in 2005 with promulgation of the Interim National Constitution in Sudan and the Interim Constitution of Southern Sudan. No further developments reported. 

2007

Full Implementation

No further developments observed.

2008

Full Implementation

No further developments observed.

2009

Full Implementation

No further developments observed.

2010

Full Implementation

No further developments observed.

2011

Full Implementation

No further developments observed.