South Sudan’s unity government is beginning to take shape, with the newly-appointed Cabinet holding its first sitting on Friday, hours after being appointed.
On Thursday evening, South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir officially formed the transitional government of national unity after he announced a new Cabinet, which saw former rebels and post-2013 war detainees take up key positions.
Through a presidential decree, Kiir appointed the former rebels to the Ministry of Interior, Mining, Water and Transport, while the political detainees got the Foreign Affairs and Agriculture among other portfolios.
First Vice President Dr Machar, through his SPLM-IO party, now controls a third of the 30-member cabinet.
President Kiir retained the influential Defence and Finance ministries,with his key loyalists Kuol Manyang and David Deng Athorbei as ministers respectively.
On the other hand, Machar’s SPLM/A-In Opposition Deputy Chairman Gen Alfred Ladu Gore was appointed Minister of Interior while its chief negotiator Gen Taban Deng was appointed Minister for Mining. One of his key lieutenants and the son to the founding president John Garang, Mabior Garang was appointed the Minister for Water and Electricity.
Former detainee Deng Alor got the Foreign ministry, a post he held under a united Sudan, before South Sudan won its independence in 2011. He will be deputised by another former detainee Dr Hiteng Cirino. Opposition leader and one of Kiir’s outspoken critics Lam Akol becomes minister for Agriculture and Food Security.
The new government is part of the deal signed in August last year in a bid to bring peace back to the continent’s new nation after fighting broke out between supporters of President Kiir and Dr Machar in the capital in December 2013, soon after the latter was sacked as first vice president.
Dr Machar returned to Juba on Tuesday after a week-long delay that saw both sides trade accusations. Upon his return he called for “unity” that would help South Sudan people unite and heal the wounds.
“I am very happy to welcome and warmly receive my brother Dr Riek Machar. I have no doubt that his return to Juba today marks the end of the war and the return of peace and stability to South Sudan,” Mr Kiir said.
FULL LISTS OF MINISTERS
1. Martin Elia Lomoro, Minister Of Cabinet Affairs, (OPPs)
2. Rebecca Joshua Okwaci, Roads and Bridges, (SPLM-IG)
3. Josephine Akoon, Environment and Forestry (SPML-IG)
4. Mary Alphone Lodira, Land, Housing and Urban Development, (SPLM-IO)
5. Deng Alor Kuol, Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, (FDs)
6. Mabior Garang de Mabior, Water Resources and Irrigation, (SPLM-IO)
7. Stephen Dhieu Dau, Trade and Industry, (SPLM-IG)
8. Dhieu Mathok Diing, Energy and Dams, (SPLM-IO)
9. John Luk Jok, Transport, (FDs)
10. Kuol Manyang Juuk, Defense and Veterans Affairs, (SPLM-IG)
11. Alfred Ladu Gore, Minister Of Interior, (SPLM-IO)
12. Paulino Wanawilla, Justice and Constitutional Affairs, (SPLM-IG)
13. Obote Mamur Mete, Minister in the Office of the President for National Security Service, (SPLM-IG)
14. Peter Bashir Gbandi, Parliamentary Affairs, (SPLM-IG)
15. David Deng Athorbei, Finance and Economic Planning, (SPLM-IG),
16. Dak Duop Bichiok, Minister Of Petroleum, (SPLM-IO)
17. Taban Deng Gai, Mining, (SPLM-IO)
18. Lam Akol Ajawin, Agriculture and Food Security, (OPPs)
19. Michael Makuei Lueth, Information, Communication, Technology and Postal Service, (SPLM-IG),
20. Richard K. Mulla, Federal Affairs, (SPLM-IO)
21. Mayik Ayii Deng, Minister In the Office of The President, (SPLM-IG)
22. James Duku, Livestock and Fisheries, (SPLM-IG)
23. Awut Deng Acuil, Gender, Child and Social Welfare, (SPLM-IG)
24. Nadia Arop Dudi, Culture, Youth and Sports, (SPLM-IG)
25. Hussein Mar Nyuot, Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management, (SPLM-IO)
26. Jemma Nunu Kumba, Wildlife Conservation and Tourism, (SPLM-IG)
27. Peter Adwok Nyaba, Higher Education, Science and Technology, (SPLM-IO),
28. Deng Deng Hoch, General Education and Instruction, (SPLM-IG)
29. Riek Gai Kok, Health, (SPLM-IG)
30. Peter Marcello Nasir, Labour, Public Service and Human Resource Development, (SPLM-IO)