We find ourselves ten years down this road, reflecting on those hopes and dreams – largely deferred. Bringing us to this important milestone, 2020 was especially hard. Last year brought forth historic flooding, persistent localized conflicts, and the onset of a global pandemic with devastating impact on South Sudan’s fragile economy. These challenges came on the heels of relative political stability – the formation of the Reconstituted Transitional Government of National Unity (R-TGONU) took place in February 2021 and implementation of the Revitalized Agreement on the Conflict in South Sudan (R-ARCSS), however slow, has continued.
While the country garners less global fanfare than it did a decade ago, we are at a critical juncture. As the world grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic, increasingly extreme climate change, and newer or more novel conflicts, what lies on the road ahead in South Sudan?
Over the years, we have learned how crucial it is for truth, reconciliation, and healing to take place if a country is to recover and re-emerge on the path to unity and sustainable peace. The R-TGONU has indicated its commitment to re-constituting the national Commission on Truth, Reconciliation, and Healing (CTRH). The process will start with a consultative phase in which South Sudanese, regardless of their gender, age, education as well as political, religious, and ethnic affiliation can provide their views on the formation of an institution that should be representative and can enable everyone to participate.