Rebel breakaway group casts doubt on proposed South Sudan truth commission
The Federal Democratic Party, the political wing of the breakaway forces of South Sudanese rebel generals Peter Gadet and Gathoth Gatkuoth, has expressed concern over the impartiality of a proposed Commission for Truth, Reconciliation, and Healing.
In a position paper available for download below, the group said a hybrid court that includes transitional justice mechanisms presents an opportunity to build democratic institutions based on the rule of law, but warned that warring parties may squander this opportunity.
"Can a truth, reconciliation and healing commission (CTRH) operate in South Sudan where ceasefire is not respected by all parties othe conflict?" the group posed.
The group suggested that the transitional government cannot be trusted to properly establish and fund truth, reconciliation, and healing activities, and may appoint commissioners not committed to justice.
"Will the CTRH findings and recommendations be endorsed and implemented by the Transitional Government of National Unity (TGONU)?" the group asked. "Will the findings and recommendations of the CTRH be impartial considering the fact that membership of the CTRH comprises members who are associated with the warring parties and therefore not impartial?"
The paper recommended tribal elders and chiefs be involved at every stage of the peace implementation and CTRH activities.
The paper was signed by FDP/South Sudan Armed Forces Provisional Political Commitee members Gabriel Changson Chang, Gabriel Yok Dok, Thomson Thoan Teny, Michael Mario Dhuor, and Timothy Tot Chol.
File photo: mass grave in Bor