Governance and Prospect of Stability

Governance and Prospect of Stability


By Dr. Addis Ababa Othow Akongdit

After decades of civil war, the Republic of South Sudan (RSS) has risen to become a beacon of hope for political stability, economic growth and prosperity, especially in an environment where attributes like stability and prosperity are in short supply. Good governance, cooperation and strengthening the rule of law are critical in order to help build a viable state. Although, social, political and economic stability are usually depend on the country core institutions performing their functions sufficiently well to manage public resources effectively and distribute them equitably, but also important to maximize the efforts of promoting multi-party democratic, decentralized and participatory governance, including the political opposition and civil society in the governance process and increasingly accountable to the citizens of South Sudan. These principles are already enshrined in the Transitional Constitution of the Republic of South Sudan (TCRSS), which was passed on the eve of the independence proclamation.

Further, the September 2012 Cooperation agreements between Sudan and South Sudan are considered as a major breakthrough that paves the way to peace, stability and prosperity. Its immediate positive impact was noted on Sudan and South Sudan’s economy, with the value of both their currencies and eased tensions between the two countries. Yet, learning from other nation’s experience in terms stability and prosperity is also essential. Therefore, this paper discusses the governance that can be seen as the exercise of economic, political and administrative authority to manage a country’s affairs at all levels. The governance which comprises the mechanisms, processes and institutions through which citizens and groups articulate their interests, exercise their legal rights, meet their obligations and mediate their differences. 

Governance has been variously defined as “the management of society by the people(Martin Albrow 2001)”,[1] “the exercise of authority or control to manage a country’s affairs and resources”[2], or as a complex system of interactions among structures, traditions, functions (responsibilities) and processes (practices) characterized by three key values of accountability, transparency and participation. Good governance has also been described as the striving for rule of law, transparency, responsiveness, participation, equity, effectiveness and efficiency, accountability, and strategic vision in the exercise of political, economic and administrative authority. Recently the terms “governance” and “good governance” are being increasingly used in development literature. Bad governance is being increasingly regarded as one of the root causes of all evil within our societies. This section explains what “governance” and “good governance” means. It seeks the relation between good governance and development and link it with the case of South Sudan.

Definitions of Good Governance

The concept of “governance means: the process of decision-making and the process by which decisions are implemented (or not implemented)[3]. However, the governance is a broad concept and necessarily includes many facets of a society. As such, indicators of governance cover many different aspects of social organization. Governance can be also defined in different ways and proposals abound. Governance denotes how a society is organized and its procedures and rules for allocation of resources, power and change.

Kaufmann et al. (2004) define governance as the traditions and institutions by which authority in a country is exercised. This includes the process by which governments are selected and replaced, the capacity of the government to formulate and implement sound policies, and the respect for citizens and the state for the institutions that govern economic and social interaction among them.

World Bank (2007) defines governance as the ways public officials and public institutions acquire and exercise authority to provide public goods and services, including basic services, infrastructure, and a sound investment climate.

UNDP (2007) defines governance as the system of values, policies and institutions by which a society manages its economic, political and social affairs through interactions within and among the state, civil society and private sector. It is the way a society organizes itself to make and implement decisions – achieving mutual understanding, agreement and action.

The European Commission defines governance as the state’s ability to serve the citizens. It refers to the rules, processes, and behaviors by which interests are articulated, resources are managed, and power is exercised in society (cited from UNDP, 2007).Governance therefore, refers to how authority is created, shaped, exercised and changed.

However, during the course of the Twelfth Replenishment discussions for the International Development Association (IDA12), the concept of good governance was specifically mentioned in the context of institutional assessment criteria. The World Bank’s perspective of good governance is set in its definition of good governance as “the manner in which power is exercised in the management of a country’s economic and social resources for development” The World Bank identified three distinct aspects of governance:

1-    the form of the political regime;

2-    the process by which authority is exercised in the management of a country’s economic and social resources for development; and

3-    the capacity of governments to design, formulate and implement policies and discharge functions.

The Asian Development Bank (AsDB) defined good governance as “the mannerin which power is exercised in the management of a country’s economic and social resources for development”. The AsDB has identified four basic elements of good governance:

1-    Accountability: Public officials should be answerable for government behaviour and responsive to the entity from which they derive authority. The accountability of public sector institutions is facilitated by evaluation of their economic performance. The suggested specific areas of action would be in the building of government capacity through, for example, public-sector management, public-enterprise management and reform, public financial management and civil-service reform;

2-    Participation: Government structures should be flexible enough to offer beneficiaries and others affected the opportunity to improve the design and implementation of public programmes and projects. The specific areas of action would be in the development of participatory development processes through, for example, participation of beneficiaries, a public/private-sector interface, decentralization/empowerment of local government and cooperation with non-governmental organizations (NGOs);

3-    Predictability: Laws and policies should exist that regulate society and that are applied fairly and consistently. Predictability requires the state and its subsidiary agencies to be bound by and answerable to the legal system in the same way as private enterprises and individuals. The specific area of action could be the development of predictable legal frameworks for private-sector development;

4-    Transparency: Information should be made available to the general public and there should be clarity as to rules and regulations. Access to timely information on the economy can be vital to economic decision-making by the private sector and can also serve to inhibit corruption.

All these elements are interlinked, and mutually supportive and reinforcing. Accountability is often related to participation and is also the ultimate safeguard of predictability. Transparency and predictability in the functioning of a legal framework would serve to ensure the accountability of public institutions.

Furthermore, the African Development Bank (AfDB) in its process of preparing an institutional policy on goodgovernance, defined governance as a process referring to theway in which power is exercised in the management affairs of a nation. Inits opinion, governance is central to creating and sustaining an enabling environment . The AfDB’s development policy on good governance is in line with itsvision for sustained African development into the 21st century and in its support of good governance, it focused on the following elements, which will be translated into specific activities.

1-    Accountability: Elected individuals and organizations charged with a public mandate should be held accountable for specific actions to the public from which they derive their authority. In a narrow sense, accountability focuses on the ability to account for the allocation, use and control of public assets in accordance with legally accepted standards;

2-    Transparency: The policies of the government should be publicly available and confidence developed in its intentions;

3-    Combating corruption: Assistance should be provided to fight the abuse of public office for private gain;

4-    Participation: Stakeholders should exercise influence over public policy decisions and share control of resources and institutions that affect their lives, thereby providing a check on the power of government. This process occurs at various levels: at the grass roots, local government and regional and national levels through flexible and decentralized forms of government;

5-    Legal and judicial reforms: A pro-governance and pro-development legal and judicial system should be created in which the laws are clear and are uniformly applied through an objective and independent judiciary.

The United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) definition of good governance is set out in a 1997 UNDP policy document entitled “Governance for Sustainable Human Development”. It is explained that governance has three dimensions: economic, political and administrative. Economic governance includes the decision-making processes that affect a country’s economic activities and its relationships with other economies. Political governance is the process of decision making to formulate policy. Administrative governance is the system of policy implementation.

Encompassing all three, good governance defines the processes and structures that guide political and socio-economic relationships. It means that good governance comprises the existence of effective mechanisms, processes and institutions through which citizens and groups articulate their interests, exercise their legal rights, meet their obligations and mediate their differences. Its essential characteristics are:

1-    Participation: All men and women should have a voice in decision-making, either directly or through legitimate intermediate institutions that represent their interests. Such broad participation is built on freedom of association and speech, as well as on the capacity to participate constructively;

2-    Rule of law: Legal frameworks should be fair and enforced impartially, particularly the laws on human rights;

3-    Transparency: This concept is built on the free flow of information. Processes, institutions and information should be directly accessible to those concerned, and enough information should be provided to render them understandable and monitorable;

4-    Responsiveness: Institutions and processes should serve all stakeholders;

5-    Consensus orientation: Good governance should mediate differing interests in order to reach broad consensus on the best interests of the group and, where possible, on policies and procedures;

6-    Equity: All men and women should have equal opportunity to maintain or improve their well-being;

7-    Effectiveness and efficiency: Processes and institutions should produce results that meet needs while making the best use of resources;

8-    Accountability: Decision-makers in government, the private sector and civil-society organizations should be accountable to the public as well as to institutional stakeholders;

9-    Strategic vision: Leaders and the public should have a broad and long-term perspective on good governance and human development, together with a sense of what is needed for such development. There should also be an understanding of the historical, cultural and social complexities in which that perspective is grounded.

Given the above-mentioned definition, the dimension of good governance can be pictured as follow:

Good Governance

Good governance has also eight major characteristics. It is participatory, consensus oriented, accountable, transparent, responsive, effective and efficient, equitable and inclusive and follows the rule of law. It assures that corruption is minimized, the views of minorities are taken into account and that the voices of the most vulnerable in society are heard in decision-making. It is also responsive to the present and future needs of society.

Good Governance 1

Source :UNESCAP, What is Good Governance?, UNESCAP:

1-    Participation: Participation by both men and women is a key cornerstone of good governance. Participation could be either direct or through legitimate intermediate institutions or representatives. It is important to point out that representative democracy does not necessarily mean that the concerns of the most vulnerable in society would be taken into consideration in decision making. Participation needs to be informed and organized. This means freedom of association and expression on the one hand and an organized civil society on the other hand;

2-    Rule of law: Good governance requires fair legal frameworks that are enforced impartially. It also requires full protection of human rights, particularly those of minorities. Impartial enforcement of laws requires an independent judiciary and an impartial and incorruptible police force;

3-    Transparency: Transparency means that decisions taken and their enforcement are done in a manner that follows rules and regulations. It also means that information is freely available and directly accessible to those who will be affected by such decisions and their enforcement. It also means that enough information is provided and that it is provided in easily understandable forms and media;

4-    Responsiveness: Good governance requires that institutions and processes try to serve all stakeholders within a reasonable timeframe;

5-    Consensus oriented: There are several actors and as many view points in a given society. Good governance requires mediation of the different interests in society to reach a broad consensus in society on what is in the best interest of the whole community and how this can be achieved. It also requires a broad and long-term perspective on what is needed for sustainable human development and how to achieve the goals of such development. This can only result from an understanding of the historical, cultural and social contexts of a given society or community;

6-    Equity and inclusiveness: A society’s well being depends on ensuring that all its members feel that they have a stake in it and do not feel excluded from the mainstream of society. This requires all groups, but particularly the most vulnerable, have opportunities to improve or maintain their well being;

7-    Effectiveness and efficiency: Good governance means that processes and institutions produce results that meet the needs of society while making the best use of resources at their disposal. The concept of efficiency in the context of good governance also covers the sustainable use of natural resources and the protection of the environment;

8-    Accountability: Accountability is a key requirement of good governance. Not only governmental institutions but also the private sector and civil society organizations must be accountable to the public and to their institutional stakeholders. Who is accountable to whom varies depending on whether decisions or actions taken are internal or external to an organization or institution. In general an organization or an institution is accountable to those who will be affected by its decisions or actions. Accountability cannot be enforced without transparency and the rule of law.

Good Governance and Economic Development

Good governance is a precondition for economic development. The quality of governance plays a vital role in the economic development of countries. The need for good governance is widely recognised in today’s discourses on development. The exhortation for good governance to achieve economic development is widespread. We quoted President Obama who said that what Africa required was not strong men but strong institutions and good governance. President Obama who underscored the importance of good governance to achieve economic development in African countries would no doubt prescribe the same for other countries as well.

Earlier studies including Owens (1987)[4] and Sen (1990) have also argued for the need for economic and political freedom as necessary conditions for the economic growth and development of nations. Nevertheless, most of the previous studies only considered certain dimensions of governance, which are theoretical in nature. Empirical studies that have been undertaken since 1990’s primarily dealt with the effects of poor governance (as proxied by political and export instabilities and corruption) on the sources of growth rather than its direct impact on growth.

Keefer et al. (1997) find that institutions such as property rights and contract enforcement positively influence economic growth. Campos and Nugent (1999) also find that the institutions of governance improve the development performance. Kaufmann, et al. (1999a and 1999b) identify the problems associated with the aggregation of good governance measures, but conclude that good governance matters for development.

In a cross-sectional analysis of all developing countries, Chauvet and Collier (2004) found that those countries suffering from poor governance, on average, experience 2.3 percentage points less GDP growth per year relative to other developing countries. Most recent findings suggested that a strong causal effect running from better governance to better development outcomes. Other economist argued that good governance promotes growth and that growth further improves governance.

However, Mauro notes “a consensus which seems to have emerged that corruption and other aspects of poor governance and weak institutions have substantial, adverse effects on economic growth”[5]. Furthermore, there are extensive econometric studies that show strong correlation between long-term economic performance and good governance. In other words, the quality of governance fundamentally determines long-run developmental outcomes[6].Kaufmann and Kraay draw on a large World Bank data set designed to measure the link between governance and development, and to monitor the performance of countries. They track the quality of governance from 1996 to 2011 in some two hundred countries.The quality of governance is divided into six categories aimed at capturing how governments are selected, monitored, and replaced; a government’s capacity to formulate and implement sound policies; and the respect of citizens and the state for the institutions that govern them. The six measured indicators so called WGI[7] on six broad dimensions of governance are[8]:

1-    Voice and Accountability: the extent to which a country’s citizens are able to participate in selecting their government, as well as freedom of expression, freedom of association, and a free media;

2-     Political Stability and Absence of Violence/Terrorism: the likelihood that the government will be destabilized by unconstitutional or violent means, including terrorism;

3-    Government Effectiveness: the quality of public services, the capacity of the civil service and its independence from political pressures; and the quality of policy formulation;

4-    Regulatory Quality: the ability of the government to provide sound policies and regulations that enable and promote private sector development;

5-    Rule of Law: in and abide by the rules of society, including the quality of contract enforcement and property rights, the police, and the courts, as well as the likelihood of crime and violence;

6-    Control of Corruption: the extent to which public power is exercised for private gain, including both petty and grand forms of corruption, as well as “capture” of the state by elites and private interests.

These 6 dimensions can be illustrated as follow:

Components of Good Governance

1.     Selection, accountability and replacement of authorities

2.     Voice and accountability.

3.     Stability and lack of violence.

4.     Efficiency of institutions, regulations, resource management.

5.     Regulatory framework.

6.     Government effectiveness.

7.     Respect for institutions, laws and interactions among players in civil society, business, and politics.

8.     Control of corruption.

9.     Rule of law


The study concluded that good governance is not only critical to development but also that it is the most important factor in determining whether a country has the capacity to use resources effectively to promote economic growth and reduce poverty.Similarly, Roll and Talbott estimate that governmental institutions and policies explain most of the variation across nations in terms of economic development with secure property rights, business transparency, political rights, civil liberties, and stable rule of law as significant factors accounting for developmental success( Richard Roll and John R. Talbott 2003)[9].

Governance Indicators in South Sudan

No doubt, that the governance can be seen as the exercise of economic, political and administrative authority to manage a country’s affairs at all levels. It comprises the mechanisms, processes and institutions through which citizens and groups articulate their interests, exercise their legal rights, meet their obligations and mediate their differences. It ensures that political, social and economic priorities are based on broad consensus in society and that the voices of the poorest and the most vulnerable are heard in decision- making over the allocation of development resources. Although WG indicators are not absolute measures of good governance, but are measures of a country’s relative rank with respect to political and economic stability. The global coverage of the indicators and the claim that they are the most precise measure of governance make the indicators attractive to researchers and policymakers alike. In “Governance Matters,” Kaufmann et al. use the indicators to find “a strong positive causal relationship from improved governance to better development outcomes.” A number of other studies have also used the indicators as explanatory variables. (See, e.g., Andres, 2006; Apodaca, 2004; Clarke et al., 2006; Das et al., 2006; Hart et al., 2005; Jung, 2006; Liu et al., 2006; Llamazares, 2005; Neumayer, 2002).

If we apply six dimensions of WGI for South Sudan as it is stated in the table, 5.1 below, it shows clearly an estimate of weak governance (ranges from approximately -2.5 to less than 1 weak governance performance). It reflects also the reality of Sudan as the one of the longest running conflicts in Africa.

Table 5.1. WGI for Sudan and South Sudan.


Sources Year Percentile Rank
Governance Score
(-2.5 to +2.5)
Standard Error
Voice and
13  2011 4.2 -1.71 0.13
13  2010 4.3 -1.72 0.13
13  2009 4.7 -1.66 0.13
13  2008 6.3 -1.62 0.13
13  2007 6.7 -1.62 0.13
11  2006 5.8 -1.72 0.13
10  2005 4.3 -1.74 0.16
Stability/Absence of Violence
6   2011 0.9 -2.61 0.25
6   2010 0.9 -2.69 0.24
6   2009 1.4 -2.68 0.24
5   2008 1.9 -2.47 0.27
5   2007 2.4 -2.34 0.27
5   2006 1.9 -2.11 0.28
5   2005 3.4 -1.98 0.29
9   2011 7.1 -1.39 0.19
9   2010 6.7 -1.37 0.19
9   2009 7.2 -1.28 0.19
8   2008 8.3 -1.28 0.20
8   2007 13.6 -1.09 0.21
7   2006 10.7 -1.14 0.20
7   2005 4.9 -1.40 0.19
Regulatory Quality 8   2011 8.1 -1.30 0.17
8   2010 7.2 -1.33 0.17
8   2009 7.7 -1.25 0.17
7   2008 4.9 -1.47 0.18
7   2007 8.3 -1.29 0.19
7   2006 10.8 -1.20 0.19
7   2005 8.3 -1.36 0.17
Rule of Law 11 2011 8.5 -1.26 0.15
11 2010 6.2 -1.32 0.15
11 2009 7.1 -1.26 0.16
11 2008 6.3 -1.41 0.17
11 2007 6.7 -1.38 0.18
10 2006 7.2 -1.31 0.18
9   2005 2.9 -1.60 0.18
Control of Corruption 9   2011 5.7 -1.30 0.18
9   2010 3.8 -1.33 0.18
9   2009 7.2 -1.21 0.19
9   2008 2.9 -1.48 0.19
9   2007 3.9 -1.34 0.19
8   2006 9.8 -1.17 0.19
7   2005 2.4 -1.45 0.19
       90th-100th Percentile          50th-75th Percentile            10th-25th Percentile       75th-90th Percentile            25th-50th Percentile            0th-10th Percentile

Source: Kaufmann D., A. Kraay, and M. Mastruzzi (2010), The Worldwide Governance Indicators: Methodology and Analytical Issues


South Sudan

Governance Indicator Sources Year Percentile Rank
Governance Score
(-2.5 to +2.5)
Standard Error
Voice and
2011 16.9 -1.07 0.24
N/A 2010 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2009 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2008 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2007 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2006 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2005 N/A N/A N/A
Political Stability/Absence of Violence 2011 14.2 -1.13 0.51
N/A 2010 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2009 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2008 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2007 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2006 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2005 N/A N/A N/A
Government Effectiveness 2011 0.9 -1.87 0.35
N/A 2010 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2009 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2008 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2007 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2006 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2005 N/A N/A N/A
Regulatory Quality 2011 3.3 -1.67 0.28
N/A 2010 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2009 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2008 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2007 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2006 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2005 N/A N/A N/A
Rule of Law 2011 2.8 -1.48 0.27
N/A 2010 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2009 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2008 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2007 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2006 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2005 N/A N/A N/A
Control of Corruption 2011 0.9 -1.65 0.43
N/A 2010 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2009 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2008 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2007 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2006 N/A N/A N/A
N/A 2005 N/A N/A N/A
       90th-100th Percentile          50th-75th Percentile            10th-25th Percentile       75th-90th Percentile            25th-50th Percentile            0th-10th Percentile


Source: Kaufmann D., A. Kraay, and M. Mastruzzi (2010), The Worldwide Governance Indicators: Methodology and Analytical Issues

Note: The Worldwide Governance Indicators (WGI) are a research dataset summarizing the views on the quality of governance provided by a large number of enterprise, citizen and expert survey respondents in industrial and developing countries. These data are gathered from a number of survey institutes, think tanks, non-governmental organizations, international organizations, and private sector firms. The WGI do not reflect the official views of the World Bank, its Executive Directors, or the countries they represent. The WGI are not used by the World Bank Group to allocate resources


Table 5.2. Election Results.

11-15 April 2010 Presidential Election [Results by State]

Registered Voters 4,800,000 (approx.)
Total Votes (Voter Turnout) Not Available (N/A)
Invalid/Blank Votes Not Available
Total Valid Votes 2,813,830


Candidate (Party) Number of Votes % of Votes
Salva Kiir (SPLM) 2,616,613 92.99%
Lam Akol (SPLM-DC) 197,217 7.01%


11-15 April 2010 Legislative Assembly Election

Registered Voters 4,800,000 (approx.)
Total Votes (Voter Turnout) Not Available (N/A)


Party Number of Seats (170)
Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) 160
Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-Democratic Change (SPLM-DC) 2
National Congress Party (NCP) 1
Independents 7


9-5 January 2011 Independence Referendum*

Main Points: Unity with or Separation from the Republic of Sudan.

Registered Voters 3,947,646
Total Votes (Voter Turnout) 3,851,994 (97.6%)
Invalid/Blank Votes 14,588
Total Valid Votes 3,837,406
Results Number of Votes % of Votes
Separation 3,792,518 98.83%
Unity 44,888 1.17%


*For the referendum to be considered valid, a minimum voter turnout of 60% was required. This requirement was met, thus validating the outcome

In the Machakos Peace Protocol, signed in July 2002, the government of Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement had agreed to establish a democratic system of governance taking into account of the cultural, ethnic, racial, religious and linguistic diversity and gender equality of the people of the Sudan and to find a comprehensive solution that addresses the economic and social deterioration of the Sudan and replaces war not just with peace, but also with social, political and economic justice which respects the fundamental human and political rights of all the Sudanese people.

Many experts welcomed that commitment to a comprehensive solution, placing good governance at the heart of the peace process. However, considering it is precisely Sudan’s long history of bad governance that lies at the root of this conflict, this emphasis in the Machakos process is also a warning. The realities based on the tables.5 show that South Sudan clearly faces serious political, economic, and security challenges. These challenges can be summarized as follows:

1-    Voice, accountability and freedom of expression: The General elections which were held in South Sudan between 11 and 15 April 2010 as part of the Sudanese general elections, brought a lot of mess. The result was a victory for Salva Kiir of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement, who received almost 93% of the vote. However, intimidation, “forced” voting and rigging are the primary complaints of those who said the 2010 elections were not conducted fairly. Their concern was not on the vote itself, but on the SPLM nomination process, which they feel was not in the interest of the community and where unpopular leaders were forced upon them. The evidence upon which some participants base their conclusion that the elections were unfair is not from personal observations but rather on complaints of defeated candidates, rebellions over election losses and the simple fact that so many SPLM candidates won. Complaints about the unfairness elections were concentrated in several states, namely Central Equatoria, Western Equatoria and Northern Bahr el Ghazal, Unity and Jonglei State.

2-    Further, there is a lack of accountability for serious crimes is a longstanding problem in South Sudan, a country with limited law enforcement capacity and a vast territory. It became an even more pressing concern in the wake of mass inter-communal violence in Jonglei state in December 2011 and January 2012, which killed more than 800 people, destroyed hundreds of homes, and displaced thousands, according to a June United Nations report documenting the killings and devastation. Even, many people were required to clamp down on speech critical of the government, in violation of their right to freedom of expression which is guaranteed in South Sudan’s constitution and international law. In a number of cases Human Rights Watch has documented since South Sudan’s independence, security forces arrested, harassed, detained or even killed journalists because of what they wrote or said.


3-    Political Stability and Absence of Violence/Terrorism: South Sudan has also failed to effectively address issues which undermine political stability in country such as conflicts of ethnic, rebellions, social conflicts and public security. For example, the cyclical inter-communal violence and heavy fighting in Jonglei state in December 2011 between some ethnic groups namely the Luo-Neur and Murle, have a history of rivalry over access to water and grazing land. Both groups have easy access to arms, and youth from both communities have perpetrated retributive justice for past grievances. South Sudan’s army and police were unable to provide adequate security to prevent this violence, which displaced an estimated 140,000 people in Jonglei state from late 2011 through February 2012. This inter-communal violence in Jonglei state has underscored, among other things, the weaknesses in South Sudan’s security and policing sectors. It has also brought to the fore underlying issues of a lack of accountability and political inclusion, as well as the breakdown of traditional authority structures, which collectively threaten to erode the fragile social and political stability of the country.


4-    Government Effectiveness: In line with Article 138 of the Interim Constitution of South Sudan, which lays out the values by which the Public Service shall be governed, the Ministry of Labour and Public Service in its vision is pointed out to create a Public Service that is able to provide impartial, quality and timely service to the Government and citizens of South Sudan. The ministry’s mission is to establish and implement an effective legislative and policy framework to create and manage a responsive and inclusive Public Service and a private sector labour market able to respond to the needs of a modern economy.


The ministry was able to formulate and publish the following policy documents:

a.     Public Service Mirror – July 2011

b.     Public Service Reform Implementation Framework Manual

c.      Guidelines for Public Sector Reform Management Structures

d.     Public Service Policy Framework

e.      Strategic Plan (2008 – 2010)

f.       Public Service Guidelines and Regulations

g.     Public Service Manual

h.     Public Service Code of Conduct for Public Service of Southern Sudan

i.       Public Service Bill (2009)

However, South Sudan requires capacity building and support to develop institutions, structures and processes to enable the equitable and effective delivery of a quality of public and civil services and policy formulation and implementation that will indicate the credibility of the government’s commitment to such policies.

4.      Regulatory Quality: South Sudan has established within the Ministry of Commerce, Industry & Investment what is called the Private Sector Development Project (PSDP) which its objectives is to improve access to finance for private sector development and increase employment opportunities in South Sudan. The PSDP, which will be processed under the World Bank’s, is formulated in the context of South Sudan’s overall strategy for private sector development as outlined in its three-year South Sudan Development Plan (SSDP). The strategy emphasizes the development and regulation of the economy of South Sudan in order to achieve prosperity and facilitation of the private sector. The program will focus on implementing three of its components, which will include investment climate reform project of which attracting new investments shall be one part. Also developing small and medium size enterprise project, primarily through training and capacity building; and access to finance project that explores new financial instruments such as leasing and mobile banking are among the various components to be covered by the program. This program shows the ability of the government to provide sound policies and regulations that enable and promote private sector development in the country.

5.      Rule of Law: There are many serious gaps and weaknesses in the nation’s justice system. In January 2011, UNMIS presented a review of the justice sector in South Sudan which noted the following issues in the effective functioning of the judiciary[10]: Shortage of qualified staff;

a.     High incidence of corruption;

b.     Lack of security for justice personnel;

c.      Nepotism;

d.     Ineffective accountability and oversight mechanisms;

e.      No access to libraries, legal texts and precedents;

f.       Limited capacity to record decisions;

g.     Inefficient court management systems’

h.     Poor infrastructure, transportation and communication facilities.

Furthermore, the unemployment is significantly high, tribal and ethnic divides persist, and disputes over cattle, water, and grazing and fishing rights often erupt into violence. Even, Human Rights Watch report published in June 2012 under title “ Prison is not for me” and based on visits to 12 of the country’s 79 prisons, stated that many inmates are detained following flawed arrests and prosecutions, or without any solid legal justification, and that children are still tried and detained with adults while dozens of people with mental disabilities languish in prison across the country without proper treatment. It has to be noted that the Government faces considerable challenges in ruling through law, primarily as vast tracts of land are cut off from authorities during the rainy season. This, in addition to difficulties in controlling the proliferation of small arms, contributes to communities taking security and justice into their own hands.

Control of Corruption is necessary. Although the country’s transitional constitution provides criminal penalties for acts of corruption, but the Government was frequently accused of allegedly failing to effectively implement the law, and officials continued to “engage in corrupt practices with impunity.” The top senior officials believe that the corruption culture in South Sudan is mainly attributed to poor management skills and lack of operational procedures and guidelines for civil servants in managing public resources and offices. It seems that this predicament has the effect of informing the government’s continued efforts to combat corruption. For the moment, the South Sudan Anticorruption Commission (SSACC) has developed an Anti Corruption Strategy 2010-2014 and a Five Year-Work Plan, which contains a series of preventive and responsive measures to be undertaken at all three levels of government in South Sudan and among non-state actors. Further, it has recently taken a number of specific measures to tackle official corruption and institute mechanism to help prevent corruption and strengthen transparency and accountability. Some of these measures are the following:

1.     A letter signed by the President of RSS was sent out to over seventy five former and current government officials in an effort to cover stolen funds;

2.     Several presidential degrees were issued to strengthen transparency and tackle corruption;

3.     The government of RSS has opened a bank account in Kenya so that the stolen funds can be returned to that account;

4.     SSACC has recovered an estimated US 60 million from various sources from fraudulent transactions and misappropriation of funds by government institutions;

5.     In January, the President Kiir sent eight letters to heads of states in Africa , Middle East, United States and Europe seeking their assistance to recover the stolen funds;

6.     Multiple investigations have been underway since January in an effort to recover stolen funds.

It is important to underline, however, regardless of the weaknesses of the various governance measures mentioned above, that South Sudan two year old has booked a huge progress. It has established functioning national and states institutions, a national parliament and ten state legislatures were established. More than two million people returned to South Sudan, the number of students attending primary and high school tripled, roads were constructed and opened to connect major cities and towns.

[1]Martin Albrow, “Society as Social Diversity: The Challenge for Governance in the Global Age”, Governance in the 21st Century, (OECD, Paris, 2001).

[2]H. Schneider, “Participatory Governance: The Missing Link for Poverty Reduction”, Policy Brief No. 17, OECD Development Centre, Paris (1999), p. 7.

[3] UNESCAP/ United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific ,What is Good Governance?, UNESCAP:

[4]Owens, E., 1987, The Future of Freedom in the Developing World, Pergamon Press.

[5]Paolo Mauro, “The Persistence of Corruption and Slow Economic Growth,” IMF Staff Papers 51, No. 1 (2004).

[6] See, Daron Acemoglu, Simon Johnson, and James Robinson, “Reversal of Fortune: Geography and Institutions in the Making of the Modern World,” Quarterly Journal of Economics 17, no. 4 (2002): 1231-1294; David Dollar and Aart Kraay, “Institutions, Trade and Growth,” Journal of Monetary Economics 50 (January 2003): 133-162; Daniel Kaufmann and Aart Kraay, “Governance Redux: The Empirical Challenge,” Global Competitiveness Report (Geneva: World Economic Forum, 2003); David Landes, The Wealth and Poverty of Nations: Why Some are So Rich and Some So Poor (New York: W.W. Norton, 1998); and Dani Rodrik, Arvind Subramanian, and Francesco Trebbi, “Institutions Rule: The Primary of Institutions over Geography and Integration in Economic Development,” Journal of Economic Growth 9 (2004): 131-165.

[7]The Worldwide Governance Indicators (WGI) are a research dataset summarizing the views on the quality of governance provided by a large number of enterprise, citizen and expert survey respondents in industrial and developing countries. These data are gathered from a number of survey institutes, think tanks, non-governmental organizations, international organizations, and private sector firms. The WGI do not reflect the official views of the Brookings Institution, the World Bank, its Executive Directors, or the countries they represent.

[8] Kaufmann, Daniel, Aart Kraay, and Pablo Zoido-Lobatón. 1999. “Aggregating Governance Indicators.” World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 2195. Washington, DC.

[9] Richard Roll and John R. Talbott, “Political Freedom, Economic Liberty and Prosperity,” Journal of Democracy 14, no. 3 (July 2003): 75-89.

[10]United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMIS), Southern Sudan Justice Sector Interim Review (UNMIS, 2011), p 12.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s