Haysom warns that there is no foundation for democratic and impartial elections in South Sudan in 2024.
During the briefing to ambassadors at the United Nations Security Council, Nicholas Haysom presented the necessary requirements that must be met by April 2024 in order to proceed, as specified in the agreed upon timeline.
Everything is connected.
It’s all about the little things.
Everything is linked.
The following are components of the plan: a fresh, ongoing constitutional structure; specifics for registering voters; a strategy for securing the election; proficient, well-equipped, and collaborative security personnel; and a system for resolving disagreements regarding the outcome.
He stated that a significant amount of these conditions must be met in order to establish an environment where elections can be conducted that are both fair and trustworthy to the people of South Sudan.
He stated that if there is enough determination, a sense of urgency, and willingness to compromise, the South Sudanese could potentially create the necessary circumstances for elections to take place in December 2024.
Threat to civilians
The leader of UNMISS stated that due to the challenging economic circumstances, along with climate-related challenges and a precarious political climate, it is likely that elections will be held in a tense atmosphere.
If these dangers are not minimized, then the danger to innocent people still exists, he cautioned.
According to Mr. Haysom, the UN Mission is dedicated to safeguarding civilians and considers it a top priority as part of its mandated duties.
According to him, UNMISS is taking proactive steps to reduce the potential for violence prior to, during, and after voting.
One strategy is to have a strong presence in areas that may become volatile by setting up temporary operating bases and team sites. Another approach is to build up a reserve of peacekeepers who can be quickly deployed, conduct thorough patrols, and increase involvement with local communities and national government.
Mr. Haysom, who is also the Special Representative of the UN Security General, noted the dire humanitarian situation in South Sudan, made worse by the ongoing war between rival militaries next door in Khartoum.
More than half of the population in South Sudan lacks adequate access to food and over nine million individuals rely on aid, with over two million being internally displaced.
Since the beginning of the conflict in Sudan’s neighboring country, over 434,000 individuals have entered the country as of Tuesday.
According to Mr. Haysom, the number of people in need of humanitarian assistance in South Sudan continues to increase. He also noted that it is still extremely risky for humanitarian workers to carry out their operations in the country.
He urged the government to allow unrestricted and safe access for humanitarian aid and to hold those responsible for attacking aid workers and stealing aid supplies intended for the most vulnerable to account. He also acknowledged the sacrifices made by many.
2024, a difficult year
To sum up, Mr. Haysom mentioned that the year 2024 is expected to bring difficulties and challenges for UNMISS, South Sudan, its citizens, and the surrounding area.
“UNMISS reiterates that it will discharge its mandate to the best of its ability,” he told ambassadors.