Ending the conflict in South Sudan: The way forward, Peter Biar Ajak, May 2017

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In April 2017, I was part of a delegation of South Sudanese experts, activists and a religious leader that travelled to Addis Ababa to meet with policymakers at the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), African Union (AU), United Nations (UN), Ethiopian government and other African and Western governmental organizations. While in Addis, the delegation delivered an urgent message: The situation in South Sudan has reached a tipping point; if the international community does not act now, South Sudan will enter an age of anarchy. To address the crisis and restore stability, the AU, IGAD and UN must work together to bring the Government of South Sudan, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-in-Opposition (SPLM-IO) and other armed opposition groups together in a political process that focuses exclusively on two priority issues: establishing security and reaching consensus on a transitional leadership, as the current government’s mandate expires in 2018 and free and fair elections are not possible in the current environment.

Peter Biar Ajak

‎PhD Candidate (Politics) at Trinity College at Cambridge University
Peter Biar Ajak is currently studying towards his PhD at the University of Cambridge.He is also the Founder and Director of the Center for Strategic Analyses and Research (C-SAR), an independent policy think-tank based in Juba, South Sudan and the CEO of South Sudan Wrestling Entertainment (SSWE). Prior to founding the C-SAR and joining the IGC, Mr. Ajak was the World Bank economist based in South Sudan. In that position, Mr Ajak advised the Government of South Sudan on areas of economic policy. He provided technical analyses in the development of South Sudan Development Plan, the South Sudan Growth Strategy, and South Sudan Vision 2040 among others. Mr Ajak has consulted with the Department for International Development (DfID), the Conflict Dynamic International (CDI), the Ministry of Finance & Economic Planning, the Ministry of Defense and Veteran Affairs, and the Office of the President of South Sudan. In the lead up to the 2011 Referendum, Mr Ajak founded South Sudan Wrestling Entertainment (SSWE), a private company that uses the South Sudanese indigenous sport of wrestling to promote peace and reconciliation among the tribes of South Sudan. He was featured on the CNN African Voices in August 2011. Mr Ajak was recently appointed a member of a committee under the Office of the President tasked with drafting of South Sudan National Security Policy and Strategy. He is one of over 4,000 Sudanese “Lost Boys” who came to the United States in 2001. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from La Salle University in Philadelphia, PA, where he was the sole recipient of the Joseph Flubacher Scholarship and the James A. Finnegan Memorial award for exemplifying the ideals of Judeo-Christian social justice. Mr Ajak was Institute for International Public Policy (IIPP) Fellow, Cohort 11. In addition, he was a Public Service Fellow at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, where he earned a Master of Public Administration in International Development (MPA/ID) degree in 2009. While at the Harvard Kennedy School, he was a Teaching Fellow for International Capital Markets and Macroeconomic Theory and Policy. He was featured in the Harvard Kennedy School Magazine in the summer of 2009

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