South Sudan

Statehood came to South Sudan in mid-2011, accompanied by international goodwill. But the conflict which erupted in late 2013 inflamed latent political and ethnic tensions. This resulted in gross human rights violations and piled further pressure onto the fledgling justice delivery system. A peace agreement was signed in August 2015 under the auspices of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the African Union to end hostilities, and detailing the formation of a government of national unity.  Justice sector institutions, including the Judiciary, the Ministry of Justice, the Private Bar and the College of Law at the University of Juba, now have a vital role to play in restoring and strengthening the rule of law, and ensuring accountability and reconciliation.

IDLO is building the capacity of justice institutions and their staff to operate in South Sudan's new English-language, common-law legal system, as well as providing uniform, constant and standardized training to the country's legal and justice professionals.

Course: Enhancing the South Sudan Judiciary

As part of the EU-funded project entitled "Enhancing the Capacity of the Judiciary of South Sudan", the IDLO South Sudan Field Program Office is organizing and delivering an 11-week training course on Criminal Procedure, Civil Procedure, Evidence, Judicial skills and the English language for a group of 25 newly appointed members of the Judiciary of South Sudan, currently serving as judicial assist

A Common Law Curriculum in South Sudan

As a long-term partner of the College of Law at the University of Juba, IDLO helped align the teaching system with South Sudan's new legal context and regional standards. With the majority of its justice sector professionals educated in Islamic/civil law, South Sudan faces the dual task of increasing its overall population of qualified legal professionals and simultaneously retraining practicing lawyers and prosecutors.

IDLO and Judiciary of South Sudan Deliver Four-Week Training for County and High Court Judges

Juba, South Sudan - 30 January 2012 - the Judiciary of South Sudan (JoSS) and the International Development Law Organization (IDLO) launched a four-week training course on substantive law and legal English for 25 County Court and High Court Judges from South Sudan’s Greater Bahr el-Ghazal, Greater Upper Nile, and Greater Equatoria Appellate Circuits. 

South Sudan: Law in a Fragile State

Today (Friday April 19) marks a milestone in IDLO’s involvement in South Sudan, as the final sixteen-strong class graduates from one of the organization’s most transformative courses. With funding from the US State Department through its law enforcement arm (INL), the training has covered both the fundamentals of common law and what is known as ‘legal English’.

Scaling up the Justice System

IDLO is working with the Ministry of Justice to develop training methodology and curricula for both general and specialized, skills-based courses for Ministry of Justice public prosecutors, legal counsels and public and private lawyers, and members of civil society organizations. By developing legal training materials for justice professionals and working to establish a pool of qualified national trainers to engage in future legal training activities, IDLO is supporting the establishment of a Legal Training Institute.

A Brand New Judiciary for South Sudan

With a reliable justice system, the Judiciary of South Sudan plays a vital role to secure lasting peace and stability in South Sudan. To this end, IDLO is working with the Judiciary of South Sudan to enhance the capacity of judges, judicial support staff and judicial assistants in procedural, substantive legal subjects and English language skills. This capacity building serves to improve the quality and delivery of judicial services in line with the country’s laws and international standards.

Towards a Constitution for South Sudan

The National Constitutional Review Commission of South Sudan continues to consult with stakeholders and the public on the development of a Permanent Constitution for South Sudan. In the past, IDLO supported the National Constitutional Review Commission by providing technical expertise in particular aspects of the Constitution’s structure and substance. IDLO provided ongoing secretarial support to the coordination of the Commission’s activities.

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Key Initiatives

  • Although South Sudan attained independence from Sudan in 2011, the country has since witnessed violent conflict and military infighting following subsequent political crises. The fragile political situation and ongoing conflict in the country has made it difficult for ordinary citizens to seek and access justice. Almost 90% of disputes are resolved in informal justice systems, and the uneven legal training in both Sudanese Sharia law and English common law have resulted in a weak legal and judicial system that has failed to provide effective legal remedies to South Sudanese citizens.

  • As part of IDLO’s continuous commitment to accountability and results-based management, IDLO is pleased to share this Evaluation Brief (summarised evaluation report):  “Enhancing the Capacity of the Judiciary of South Sudan”. The evaluation has been conducted by independent evaluation experts, supervised by IDLO’s Evaluation Unit. This exercise utilized a theory-driven, mixed-method approach, in line with the IDLO Evaluation Guidelines and OECD DAC standards.

  • As a long-term partner of the College of Law at the University of Juba, IDLO helped align the teaching system with South Sudan's new legal context and regional standards. With the majority of its justice sector professionals educated in Islamic/civil law, South Sudan faces the dual task of increasing its overall population of qualified legal professionals and simultaneously retraining practicing lawyers and prosecutors.

  • IDLO is working with the Ministry of Justice to develop training methodology and curricula for both general and specialized, skills-based courses for Ministry of Justice public prosecutors, legal counsels and public and private lawyers, and members of civil society organizations. By developing legal training materials for justice professionals and working to establish a pool of qualified national trainers to engage in future legal training activities, IDLO is supporting the establishment of a Legal Training Institute.

  • With a reliable justice system, the Judiciary of South Sudan plays a vital role to secure lasting peace and stability in South Sudan. To this end, IDLO is working with the Judiciary of South Sudan to enhance the capacity of judges, judicial support staff and judicial assistants in procedural, substantive legal subjects and English language skills. This capacity building serves to improve the quality and delivery of judicial services in line with the country’s laws and international standards.

  • The National Constitutional Review Commission of South Sudan continues to consult with stakeholders and the public on the development of a Permanent Constitution for South Sudan. In the past, IDLO supported the National Constitutional Review Commission by providing technical expertise in particular aspects of the Constitution’s structure and substance. IDLO provided ongoing secretarial support to the coordination of the Commission’s activities.

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