The Call for Merger of the National Dialogue and HLRF Processes

The search for a comprehensive peace in South Sudan is an urgent demand of all the people, most of whom are distraught and made anxious by the war-induced stresses. To support the pursuit of a comprehensive peace in the country, this Dialogue Brief makes a case for the merger of the National Dialogue process and the on-going Highlevel Revitalization Forum (HLRF). The argument is simple—that neither the National Dialogue nor the HLRF has all the ingredients to resolve the conflict comprehensively single handedly. Merging the two processes creates strong synergies that could produce a lasting solution. This proposition is informed by the fact that the National Dialogue process cannot achieve a comprehensive peace alone because it does not tackle two critical issues: ceasefire and power sharing, which are critical in achieving a political agreement. The HLRF process, on the other hand, is inadequate in the sense that it is an elite process, mainly concerned with a political compromise at the top while failing to consider grassroots grievances. It simply does not sufficiently include the voices of ordinary citizens. A combination of the two processes potentially addresses these deficiencies for a possible comprehensive peace settlement.