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Project Case Study

Security and defence transformation in South Sudan

Strengthening civilian oversight and internal accountability of the security sector at national and sub-national levels in South Sudan

After decades of war and the first challenging years of independence, South Sudan is continuing to develop the nascent structures and processes of a new state. Although the country is potentially wealthy, the majority of its citizens are poor, with limited or no access to basic services, including security. However, the security sector accounts for the greatest part of the national budget, pointing to a need to reallocate financing to health and education without undermining the political stability that integration of other armed groups into the military has provided since the peace agreement in 2005.

Project info

Security and defence transformation in South Sudan


  • 2013 - 2016


Working with

  • Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA)

Since 2009, we have worked alongside the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA), supporting its transformation into an accountable, affordable, appropriate and adequate force, operating under effective civil control and within a clear legal and policy framework. These activities have helped our South Sudanese partners develop a five-year Transformation Strategy, defining future size, structure and strategic capabilities of their force with a delivery Transformation Programme. We have also helped to develop role descriptions for the Chief of General Staff, his deputies and more than 800 senior officers, and to support preparation of an SPLA Training Strategy, including training over 250 senior officers.

The programme has also built capacity in manpower planning and administration, including design and establishment of the SPLA’s first personnel database and Administration Training Centre. We also supported the Ministry of Defence in exercising effective oversight of the SPLA by working collaboratively to put in place developing organisational structures, implement management systems, build capacity in policy formulation, enhance human resource management and improve accountability of financial management.

In 2013 the UK Government awarded us the next three year phase of the programme. This second phase will continue the previous phase’s activities as well as establishing sector commands, driving transformation down to divisions, and improving relations with communities.

“The project is delivering against its goal, purpose and outputs in a complex and highly politically sensitive context.”
2010 Independent Annual Project Review

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