Legislative Branch Reform: Sudan Comprehensive Peace Agreement

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

PART II

2.2. The National Legislature:

2.2.1 There shall be a bicameral National Legislature comprised of:­

2.2.1.1 A National Assembly; and

2.2.1.2 A Council of States.

2.2.2. In the establishment of the National Legislature, the following principles shall apply:­

2.2.2.1. There shall ·be equitable representation of the people of South Sudan in both legislative chambers; and

2.2.2.2. Relevant considerations shall be taken into account in determining what constitutes equitable representation.

2.2.3 The National Legislature shall be structured and operate as follows:­

2.2.3.1 The National Assembly shall be elected in accordance with the procedures set forth by an impartial. and representative Electoral Commission and in accordance with fair electoral laws;

2.2.3.2 There shall be a Council of States comprised of two representatives from each state;

2.2.3.3 Free and fair elections for the National Assembly shall be conducted in accordance with the Interim National Constitution governing the Interim Period. The date shall be determined by the Parties signatory to this Agreement, after consulting with the Electoral Commission.

2.2.4 Pending the elections referred to above, the National Assembly shall consist of such members representing the Parties to the Agreement, and other forces in the North and South so as to promote inclusiveness and stability, in such proportions to be determined by the parties prior to the conclusion of the Peace Agreement.

Implementation History

2005

Intermediate Implementation

As agreed in the CPA, the National Legislature (the National Assembly and the Council of States) was formed and convened on 31 August 2005. Ahmed Ibrahim ElTahir (NCP) was elected Speaker for the National Assembly and Atim Garang Deng (SPLM) Deputy Speaker. Ali Yahia (NCP) was elected Speaker and Remo Olair (SPLM) Deputy Speaker of the Council of States. As far as equitable representation is concerned, the NCP had 234 seats, SPLM 126 seats, Northern political forces 55 seats, Southern political forces 27 seats, and national personalities eight seats in the 450 member National Assembly. The Interim Constitution came into effect on 9 July 2005.1 According to the 2005 CPA, elections will be held in 2009.

  • 1. "The CPA Monitor-Monthly report on the Implementation of the CPA," UNMIS, March 2006.
2006

Intermediate Implementation

The National Assembly and the Council of States were established in 2005. According to the 2005 CPA, Elections will be held in 2009. No election date was set for the elected National Assembly and the Council of States.  

2007

Intermediate Implementation

In a step towards holding general elections, the Political Parties Act was finalized. Nevertheless, a national election commission was yet to be established and an election act was yet to be enacted.2 The election date was set for the elected National Assembly and the Council of States. Nevertheless, the Sudanese government was firm on holding election on time.3

  • 2. "The CPA Monitor-Monthly report on the Implementation of the CPA," UNMIS, February 2009.
  • 3. "Sudan's Al-Bashir tells political parties to "get ready for elections," BBC Monitoring Middle East, January 7, 2007.
2008

Intermediate Implementation

The legislative reform provided in the 2005 CPA was to be complete once elections took place. In this regard, some progress was made in 2008. Most importantly, the National Assembly on 7 July 2008 passed the National Elections Act 2008 and the National Assembly endorsed the members of the National Elections Commission (NEC) in November 2008.4 President Bashir was committed for the 2009 general elections.5

  • 4. "The CPA Monitor-Monthly report on the Implementation of the CPA," UNMIS, February 2009.
  • 5. "Beshir Cows Sudan Elections on Time," Agence France Presse, August 3, 2008.
2009

Intermediate Implementation

The elections were delayed by the National Election Commission due to delay in census. The election was originally scheduled for July 2009, which was set to take place on February 10 2010.6 The Election Commission, on 30 June 2009, released a revised electoral calendar and rescheduled the election to 5-12 April 2010.7

  • 6. "Sudan: General elections reportedly postponed to February 2010," BBC Monitoring Middle East, April 2, 2009; "The CPA Monitor-Monthly report on the Implementation of the CPA," UNMIS, April 2009.
  • 7. "The CPA Monitor-Monthly report on the Implementation of the CPA," UNMIS, June 2009.
2010

Full Implementation

The polling for the election commenced on 11 April 2010. The election schedule was revised. In the National Assembly, the National Congress party won a total of 312 seats, the SPLM won 99 seats, the Popular Congress Party won four seats, the Federal UMMA Party won three seats, the Democratic Unionist Party won four seats, the Democratic Unionist Party-Original won one seat, the SPLM-DC won two seats, the UMMA Reform & Development won two seats, the National UMMA Party won one seat, the independent candidate won one seat, and the Muslim Brotherhood won one seat. On May 24 2010, Ahmed Ibrahim Eltahir from NCP was elected speaker for the National Assembly. Lt. Gen. Adam Musa Hamid was elected as the Speaker of the Council. Atem Garang from SPLM was elected as the deputy speaker of the National Assembly.8 The Council of State was composed of 50 members represented by two members from each 25 states and two observers from Abyei. Members of Council of States were elected by the MPs of state legislature which took place in May.9

This satisfies the legislative branch reform provision of the 2005 CPA. This however, does not suggest that the elections were free and fair. As a matter of fact, international observers regarded the elections as deeply flawed.10

  • 8. "The CPA Monitor-Monthly report on the Implementation of the CPA," UNMIS, May 2010.
  • 9. "Sudan Report Says Al-Bashir to Be Sworn-in After States Council Formation," BBC Monitoring Middle East, May 3, 2010.
  • 10. "Carter Center Reports Widespread Irregularities in Sudan's Vote Tabulation and Strongly Urges Steps to Increase Transparency (10 May 2010)," Carter Center, 2010, accessed May 22, 2012, http://cartercenter.org/resources/pdfs/news/pr/counting-tabulation-may20....
2011

Full Implementation

The legislative branch reform was completed in 2010. Implementation of this provision became obsolete once Southern Sudan became an independent state on 9 July 2011 following the April referendum.