Parliamentarians in South Sudan voted Thursday to extend the mandate of President Salva Kiir’s government for an extra three years, in a move likely to deal a blow to peace efforts.
“The transitional constitution amendment bill number five for the year 2018 is hereby passed by the national legislature,” said Speaker Anthony Lino Makana after lawmakers unanimously voted to pass the bill which must now be signed into law by Kiir.
Mr Kiir joined the southern Sudan rebellion, the Anyanya battalion as a boy during the First Sudanese Civil war in the 1960’s and reached the rank of an officer by the time Sudan’s President Jaafar Numeiri made peace with the rebels in 1972 Addis Ababa agreement.
Following the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement between Juba and Khartoum, which formally ended the war in July 2005, Dr John Garang was sworn in as the vice president of Sudan.
About three months later, Dr Garang died in a helicopter crash. Mr Kiir succeed him as the First vice president of Sudan and President of Sudan.
Mr Kiir, 66, a Dinka South Sudanese politician has been President of South Sudan since its independence in 2011.