Key findings

  • Manhiem Bol Malek was appointed Warrap’s governor in November 2022, after the previous governor, Aleu Ayieny Aleu, fell out with Akol Koor Kuc, the director general of the Internal Security Bureau of South Sudan’s National Security Service. Akol Koor controls Warrap state.
  • Manhiem’s governorship has employed the same tactics as his predecessor: he has attempted to quell dissent and intercommunal clashes using extrajudicial killings, the dilution of customary authority, and the repression of dissident populations. Like his predecessor, however, he has not been successful in preventing violence. His interventions, rather than being thought of as the work of a neutral state governor, are experienced by the communities of Warrap as partisan interference on behalf of one or another group.
  • In theory, the party of South Sudanese president Salva Kiir, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), should win Warrap state in national elections currently postulated for December 2024. Warrap, however, suffers from a surfeit of politicians—too many to be satisfied by the SPLM positions on offer. In this situation, disaffected candidates may run for opposition parties, and in a situation of minimal civic and political space this could lead to violence in Warrap.