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Defending kleptocrat is like defending devils before God

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 12:34

By Zechariah Makuach Maror

On Friday 6. Dec. 2019 the Dawn newspaper published an article in it Vol.4 Issue 1111 written by a clumsy writer called Peter Wek Ayom Wek titled "response to Zechariah Makuach Maror Article published on 29 August 2019 on pachodo.org". On his vague overdue article, he was trying to defend the bloodstained governor of Gogrial state who obligated the butchering of the citizens in broad sunlight without fearing of humanity, here I don't want to question writer's unprofessional writing but the reputation of media outlet that publishes such filthy opinion, at least ethic should have been a matter in selecting publication, “anyway that is none of my business”.

Wek said the governor of Gogrial State Mr Victor Atem Atem was appointed by the President of the Republic through the recommendations of four community of Gogrial State and therefore by that virtue, he has rights and powers to arrest and kill everyone as he wishes. This short sentence caught me with a worried of how could the future of this Stone Age man holds in 21st century of democracy and rules of Law, even I can say the Stone-age Smart mind who generate opinion is far better than Mr Wek who thinks that someone recommended and appointed by the President is God of hosts and he should not be criticized for he will sent apocalypse to end the world age. Without knowing that he was appointed by the President to take care of the citizens not to use the powers for killing the youths who oppose his medieval styles of leadership.

For your information, the current governor was recommended by none other than some individuals who don't even constitute any single clan rather than your mere claim that he was proposed by four communities of Gogrial State. If you insist than portray the evidence to support your argument because the evidence of my favourite is that Apuk community have explicitly protested the appointment of your governor by publicly boycotting all associations that fall under the umbrella of Gogrial State while other communities had grudgingly swallowed their dissatisfaction as respect to president's decree. I think Atem came by chance and not through recommendations as you concocted, otherwise you are behind the news that is why you have responded my article after 129 days, wake up from your deep sleeping to cash up with a world my brother. I don't know what compelled you to backdate yourself to such extent of responding the forgotten article thought I assumed to know what influence you.

Do you know the Leadership of your political godfather has become "intoxicated" by power — engagement in the wrongful behaviour simply because he can and he could get away with it (and his cronies such as liken of you and others are willing to collude and make such exceptions "It's OK because he is the leader"). Handful human rights organizations have reported that your powerful absolute immoral governor had engaged in a sexual dalliance with intern teens girls simply "because he could." And yet you implying that it is his divine right because he's a good leader who brought consensus among the communities of Gogrial State, do you know Absolute power corrupts absolutely. The form of power Your governor had invented in Gogrial State is what I can call personalized power, and he is using it for personal gain. Importantly, a leader can use his or her power to benefit others, but can also gain personally. The obvious problem is when personalized power, dominate and the leader gains frequently at the followers' expense like you who follow blindly.

Wek has similarly situated his governor action to arbitrarily arrest and jail youths as a means of ending indiscipline, according to the theory of State and power you can't arbitrarily be arrested and kills people as a means of making them some good citizens. what you do to gain ground of support as a government is enactment of the laws that govern public affairs and then implement those laws with letter and spirit so that they effectively yield a public good and finally avail the needed services to inculcate the spirit of patriotism, loyalty, devotion, dedication and morality between the state and citizens. Wek think that state is like classroom were a teacher barely entered into class and cane indiscipline pupils/students for not honoured him/her to stand up, if that is how you view politics than you are wrong.

Your governor has always been accusing youths of indiscipline which is fundamentally fake in nature, is talking about lack of services means lack of discipline? is talking about pregnant women tortured by governor militias till she got miscarriage mean lack of respect? is talking about unlawful taxes imposed on civilians means false accusations? is talking about the civilian's cattle which illegally taken by the governor's security adviser means reclaiming conflict? Is talking about the people who are shot dead by governor order mean calls for instability? This is a few questions that the governor supported mouthpiece should retort to ascertain the public about how good is his governor.

Finally, the good reason we the civil society criticized state government is that according to "constitutional theory it is stipulated that we the people are the sovereigns, the local and state officials are only our agents. it is we who have the final word to speak softly or angrily. We can seek to challenge and annoy, as we need not stay docile and quiet.”— Justice William O. Douglas. With this quotation, your governor is Unjust, Brutal, Criminal, Corrupt, Inept, Greedy, Power-hungry, Immoral. Murderous, Evil, Dishonest, Crooked, Excessive, Deceitful, Untrustworthy, Unreliable, Tyrannical. These are all type of words that your governor has at some time or other been used to describe Atem government in Gogrial. That I may feel morally compelled to call out the government for its wrongdoing does not make me any less disciplined citizen.

If I didn't love co-existence in this State I would be easy to remain silent. However, it is because I love my country and State, because I believe fervently that if we lose freedom here, there will be no place to escape to, I will not remain silent Neither should you nor should any other man, woman or child—no matter who they are, where they come from, what they look like, or what they believe. The final solution to problems of Gogrial state is for President to remove Victor Atem Atem in the throne of Gogrial State.

The writer is a civil society activist based in Juba and he could be reached via zechariahmakuach25@gmail.com

Categories: Africa

SPLM-N al-Hilu says ready for peace negotiations

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 11:30


December 9, 2019 (JUBA) - The SPLM-North led by Abdel Aziz al-Hilu said ready to resume peace talks with the Sudanese government in Juba on Tuesday.

Unlike the Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) the group failed last November to strike a declaration of principle with the Sudanese government as the latter declined to include the right for self-determination in the peace talks.

Aljak Mahmoud, SPLM-N Hilu spokesman said in a statement extended to Sudan Tribune that their negotiating delegation headed by the Movement's Secretary General Amar Amon is ready to engage in a new round of talks on 10 December.

We have come with a sincere and strong will to engage in the second round of direct negotiations, and we hope that the other side will be armed with the same spirit and determination so that the two parties can make a real breakthrough by agreeing on a declaration of principles that constitutes a road map governing the negotiating process.

We must bear in mind the legitimate aspirations of the Sudanese people to achieve a just, comprehensive and sustainable peace that addresses the root causes of the Sudanese crisis and puts a logical end to the ongoing war in Sudan.

The SPLM-N al-Hilu asked the transitional government to declare that its adherence to a secular Sudan, but the negotiating delegation said the matter would be determined in the constitutional conference that will take place during the transitional period.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

South African crowned Miss Universe 2019

ModernGhana News - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 11:10
South African beauty queen Zozibini Tunzi was crowned the 2019 Miss Universe on Sunday night. Ms Tunzi emerged top in the contest after impressing the judges and fans through the different rounds with different outfits. Miss Puerto Rico, Madison Anderson and Miss Mexico, Sof iacute;a Arag oacute;n emerged as runner-ups. During question tim ...
Categories: Africa

Ebo Whyte and his 'God, You're Fired' play

ModernGhana News - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 11:10
My first experience with Ebo Whyte rsquo;s production was two years ago. Since then, I resolved to always be at his stage plays; a decision I have never regretted. From lsquo;Dear God Comma rsquo;, to lsquo;Women on Fire rsquo;, to lsquo;Dora, Why rsquo; to lsquo;The Woman in the Bathroom rsquo;: I have watched them all. One thing that has r ...
Categories: Africa

Arman meets al-Burhan in Khartoum as Minnawi arrives in Juba ahead of peace talks

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 11:01


December 9, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - SPLM-N Agar delegation held a meeting held in Khartoum with the head of the Sovereign Council to discuss preparation for peace negotiations, while Minawi arrived in Juba ahead of a new round of talks in Juba that will begin next Tuesday.

Yasir Arman, SPLM-N Agar deputy leader who is in Khartoum nowadays held a series of meetings with the transitional authority Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC) as the group consults on the peace process with the allied groups.

"A meeting was held with the Chairman of the Sovereignty Council, Lieutenant General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, on the preparations for the success of the Juba negotiations, the release of the remaining prisoners and holding negotiations on the basis of partnership and joint action between all components of the transitional authority," said the group spokesman.

"A meeting was also held with the head of the government negotiating delegation, Lt Gen Mohamed Hamdan Daglo Hemetti," further said the statement.

Arman and his delegation including Ismail Jalab the Movement's secretary-general discussed with Hemetti the preparations for the upcoming round of talks in Juba.

The meeting discussed "the need to reach a peace agreement that supports the issues of transition in Sudan including freedom, peace and democracy, and that peace remains a major condition for getting out of the various crises that our country suffers from".

The SPLM-N Agar is part of the Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) which includes armed groups from Darfur and other groups from eastern Sudan have delegations in Khartoum to advocate for peace and meet their supporters.

Also, the government officials said they plan to include the stakeholders from the conflict-affected regions in the process, pointing that their support for the talks is key for its success.

Minnawi in Juba

For its part, the Sudan Liberation Movement led by Minni Minnawi (SLM-MM) said its leader had arrived in Juba for the third round of peace negotiations.

"In response to the invitation made by the government of the Republic of South Sudan to resume the negotiations for peace in Sudan, the leader of the movement, Commander Minni Arko Minnawi, arrived in Juba on Sunday evening. He will hold consultation meetings before the launch of the upcoming round of talks".

"The Movement hopes that this round will be the final of a just and comprehensive peace process that addresses the root causes of the Sudanese crisis and achieves lasting stability for the sake of the rebirth and building of the country," further said the group.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

UCL: Kwadwo Asamoah To Start In Midfield Against Barcelona On Tuesday

ModernGhana News - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 10:10
Ghana international, Kwadwo Asamoah is set to be deployed in midfield by Antonio Conte against Barcelona on Tuesday in the UEFA Champions League. According to Rome based newspaper Corriere dello Sport, the former Chelsea and Juventus gaffer is forced to consider viable options in the Nerazzurri rsquo;s upcoming game against the La Liga gi ...
Categories: Africa

Valladolid Hails Mohammed Salisu For Impressive Display Against Real Sociedad

ModernGhana News - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 09:52
Real Valladolid coach, Sergio Gonz aacute;lez has heaped praises on Ghana defender, Mohammed Salisu after a stalemate against Real Sociedad over the weekend. The enterprising centre back who has been linked to Manchester United put up another solid display which caught the attention of the fans. Speaking to the press after the game, th ...
Categories: Africa

AC Milan Fan Stabbed In Fight Over Players' Shorts

ModernGhana News - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 09:25
An AC Milan supporter was stabbed outside Bologna stadium on Sunday in a fight over who had caught a players 39; shorts, according to media reports in Italy. The dispute broke out between the two visiting fans after Milan players threw shirts and shorts into the stands after the final whistle following their 3-2 away win. It continued ...
Categories: Africa

Analysis: How Anthony Joshua Masterminded His Redemption In Saudi Arabia

ModernGhana News - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 09:23
Six months ago Anthony Joshua walked out of the Madison Square Garden a defeated man. Losing wasn rsquo;t the main talking point, it was who he lost to and how he lost that had the world looking for answers. Andy Ruiz Jnr was a relatively unknown name in the boxing world despite impressing in a world title fight against Joshua rsquo;s for ...
Categories: Africa

Joshua Had 'Health Issue' Before First Fight With Ruiz

ModernGhana News - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 09:13
Unified world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua said a health issue left him tired and drained in the build-up to his June defeat by Andy Ruiz Jr. Joshua, 30, reclaimed his world titles in Saudi Arabia on Saturday, dominating the Mexican over 12 rounds. Conspiracy theories had circulated after his initial defeat, one of the bigge ...
Categories: Africa

Cardi B 'Snubs' Ghanaian Celebrities

ModernGhana News - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 08:49
American rapper, Cardi B has explained why a much-anticipated meet and greet session with some Ghana rsquo;s celebrities on Sunday did not materialise. Many celebrities thronged the Kempinski Hotel in Accra to interact with the star ndash; real name, Belcalis Marlenis Alm aacute;nzar ndash; who was billed to perform at the Livespot X Fest ...
Categories: Africa

Sudan has reduced its forces in Yemen to 5,000

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 08:11

December 8, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - Sudanese Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok announced on Sunday that Khartoum has drawn down its soldiers in Yemen from 15,000 to 5,000 soldiers.

Sudan Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok speaks during joint press conference with German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas in Khartoum on 5 Sept 2019 (Reuters Photo)

In 2015, Sudan had dispatched thousands of ground troops and several fighter jets fighting in Yemen as part of the Saudi-led coalition to fight Iran-backed Houthi rebels.

Speaking to the media after his return from Washington on Sunday, Hamdok reiterated that there is no military solution for the conflict in Yemen.

"We are keen to support our brothers and sisters in Yemen and bring them our experience in Sudan that there must be a negotiated solution," he said.

“Regarding the withdrawal of forces, the number of troops had reached 15,000 soldiers and now it has drawn down to 5000," he further disclosed.

He stressed that Sudanese officials had previously mentioned that the number of soldiers has been reduced but they didn't speak about troops withdrawal.

Last October, a member of the Sovereign Council and General Commander of the Rapid Support Forces Mohamed Hamdan Daglo (Hemetti) told a joint meeting held with the Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC) that the army had withdrawn 10,000 troops from Yemen.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

Egyptian company wins $45m solar contract in South Sudan

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 07:40

December 8, 2019 (JUBA) – An Egyptian manufacturing company has won a $45 million hybrid solar PV park contract in South Sudan.

A solar power plant

Elsewedy Electric reportedly inked the agreement with the Ministry of Energy and Dams of South Sudan in the capital, Juba last week.

The deal will see the construction of a hybrid solar photovoltaic project with a battery storage system near Nesitu, 23km from Juba.

The project will occupy some 250,000sqm, featuring a 20MW-peak solar photovoltaic park, a 35MW-hour battery storage system, and an in-house training centre to serve Jubek State and the region.

The project, officials said, will start producing energy next year.

“It is a privilege being selected by the esteemed government of the Republic of South Sudan to deliver this project, which shall be one of the largest battery storage solar photovoltaic projects in Africa,” noted Ahmed El Sewedy, President and CEO of El Sewedy Electric.

“The support of the AFREXIMBANK was significant to conclude this contract which will help South Sudan to tap its incredible renewable resource potential and deliver significant economic, social and environmental value,” he added.

According to a statement Sudan Tribune obtained, the project's estimated annual supply of 29,000,000kWh of clean energy will power more than 58,000 South Sudanese households, while avoiding more than 12,000 tons of carbon dioxide gas each year.

The project will reportedly contribute significantly to the region's electrification.

“We realised that reliable power and water supply is the key to developing economies, and we will deploy all our global resources in ensuring South Sudan and its people to unlock their full potential; same as we will do in all countries we operate in,” stressed El Sewedy.

Founded in 1938 by the El Sewedy family, the Cairo-based company manufactures and sells integrated energy products and services.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

Compensations are the only remaining issue before to remove Sudan from US terror list

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 07:27

December 8, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - Sudanese Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok said on Sunday that compensation for victims of terror attacks is the only outstanding issue in the ongoing negotiations with Washington on removing Sudan from the list of State Sponsors of Terrorism.

The port side damage to the guided missile destroyer USS Cole is pictured after a bomb attack during a refueling operation in the port of Aden in this October 12, 2000 (Reuters file photo)

Speaking at a press conference upon his return from Washington, Hamdok said that his meetings with U.S. officials, including officials of the American administration, Congress and policy-making institutions were fruitful.

He stressed that negotiations on Sudan's rescission from the SST's list discussed seven requirements, namely, humanitarian access to the civilians in the conflict areas, human rights, religious freedoms, North Korea, the launch of the peace process, cooperation on counterterrorism and compensation for victims of terror attacks.

He pointed out that the first five points were agreed, and that the matter of cooperation in combating terrorism is an ongoing matter and is being implemented. He also disclosed that they had a "very good" meeting with the director of the CIA on this respect.

"The last pending issue is the agreement on compensation and during the meetings with the various interlocutors, we mentioned that we are also victims of the former, but ultimately the issue remains a state responsibility that we must adhere to (under the international law)".

He added the negotiations focus on two issues first the amount of the compensation be reasonable for the impoverished country, the second is to protect Sudan from future lawsuits.

He said that the negotiating team has succeeded to reduce a court ruling from $11 billion to hundreds of millions and the negotiations are still continuing to achieve a final settlement.

US court issued various rulings against the Sudanese government for its support of the terrorist bombings of the naval destroyer USS Cole in October 2000 and the US embassy bombings in Nairobi, Kenya and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania in 1998.

Sudan has to pay over $300 million only for the victims of the attack on USS Cole and $2.1 billion in damages to American families of victims of the 1998 bombings.

The SST lifting is a key step for the Sudanese transitional before to draw foreign investments and engage in talks with the international financial institutions on debt relief and borrow money.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

South Sudan unveils new animal disease diagnostic lab

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 06:48

December 8, 2019 (JUBA) The government of South Sudan has officially unveiled the first animal disease central diagnostic laboratory to identify common tropical diseases affecting livestock.

A cattle keeper poses with one of his animals at the cattle camps in Terekeka on 29 September 2011 (Photo: FAO/Ogolla.E)

The Vice President, James Wani Igga said the new facility will enhance the global system of detecting and preventing diseases.

“South Sudan needs to conduct research and enhance global systems for preventing, detecting and diagnosing diseases,” he said.

Igga stressed that the new laboratory facility will also strengthen animal's health laboratory network and boost conduct of comprehensive researches with government and the private sector.

South Sudan's Livestock and Fisheries minister, James Janka Duku said the newly inaugurated laboratory was the first one in the region.

“This laboratory is classified internationally as level one equipped to diagnose common tropical animal diseases in South Sudan. The inauguration comes on time meet the current state of emergency declared by the president on the flooding in the country,” he said.

Meanwhile, Meshack Malo, the country representative for the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), said they have trained enough manpower to run the newly unveiled animal facility.

“We have 18 technicians that have been trained and will run this laboratory. We have 71 other technicians trained out of Juba to samples get to reach this place in the right forms,” said Meshack.

“We want to assure you we will work to ensure the livestock sector increases the gross domestic product of the country”, he added.

The animal laboratory was funded by the Japanese government and implemented by FAO through its trans-boundary animal project.

South Sudan reportedly ranks 7th in livestock farming in Africa and over 65 percent of its population relies on livestock for their survival.

Last year, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization embarked on its biggest ever livestock vaccination campaign in South Sudan, aimed at protecting over 9 million animals from frequent disease outbreaks.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

S. Sudan's national legislative assembly speaker resigns

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 09/12/2019 - 06:33

December 8, 2019 (JUBA) – The speaker of South Sudan's Transitional National Legislative Assembly (TNLA), Anthony Lino Makana has tendered in his resignation.

Lino Makana reacts to his nomination to be the parliament speaker at SPLM Cancus meeting in Juba on July 27, 2016 (ST Photo)

Makana tendered in his resignation during a ruling party (SPLM) caucus meeting chaired by President Salva Kiir on Sunday in the capital, Juba.

He has been under intense pressure from lawmakers, who accused him of allegedly mismanaging the national assembly, to resign.

The embattled speaker was, among other accusations, faulted for failing to present the Auditor General's reports to the assembly.

Meanwhile, President Kiir applauded Makana's move to resign instead of allowing to be impeached by the country's lawmakers.

Kiir, according to the Presidential Press Unit (PPU), urged the incoming speaker to consider retaining the two deputy speakers should they be exonerated from what led to Makana's exit.

“Otherwise, they would then be asked to also submit their resignation,” he told the SPLM caucus.

Makana, who represents Yambio County, became speaker in July 2016 replacing Mangok Rundial.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

Mahdi calls to speed up appointment of civilian governors in Sudan

Sudan Tribune - Sun, 08/12/2019 - 08:59


December 7, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - Sadiq al-Mahdi, leader of the National Umma Party (NUP) announced his support for the speedy appointment of qualified civilian governors and called on the armed movements to end the war and engage in the peace process.

Al-Mahdi made statements during a visit to Aba Island, one of the bastions of his party in the While Nile State 300km south of Khartoum.

His party announced that al-Mahdi intends to mobilize popular support for the transitional government. But observers say he wanted to inspect the party's electoral constituencies and organize the parties sections.

The White Nile military governor last November threatened to arrest protesters who call to resolve water crisis in the state, triggering calls to replace him by a civilian governor.

Speaking to the huge crowd that attended the rally, al-Mahdi said that the would-be appointed civilian governor should be qualified persons, enjoy popular support, and bear responsibility without any favouritism.

He further said that the Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC) will submit the list of its nominees for governors to Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok to pick the 18 governors.

"Our advice to him is to choose the strong and faithful (governors)," al-Mahdi said.

The NUP leader did not indicate a date for their appointment. However, last month, the FFC agreed with the government negotiating team to delay the appointment of governors until the 31 December.

The Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) says opposed to the appointment of governors before the signing of a peace agreement.

He called on the armed groups to stop the war and regain the country to negotiate just peace addressing the root causes of the conflict and give all those who took up arms their rights to decentralization, the power and wealth sharing, and the recognition of cultural diversity.

He added that all the refugees and internally displaced people are all entitled to take part in this peace project.

He added that his party has a majority in term of popular support in the conflict areas in Darfur, the Blue Nile and South Kordofan, before to add that anyone who disputes this fact we will prove it to him" alluding to the general elections that should take place within three years.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

S. Sudan proposes referendum to solve states impasse

Sudan Tribune - Sun, 08/12/2019 - 08:34

December 7, 2019 (JUBA) - South Sudan government said Friday that the number of states, which has become contentious with the opposition, should be resolved through a referendum vote.

S. Sudan cabinet affairs minister Martin Elia Lomoro (Photo KT Press)

"“The president shared his concern with the members of cabinet and all of whom spoke in favor of 32 states,” Cabinet Affairs minister, Martin Elia Lomuro told reporters in the capital, Juba.

"Only a referendum can reverse the structures currently in existence to avoid crisis and insecurity that may even jeopardize implementation of the peace agreement," he added.

The minister said the number states, boundaries and the security arrangements were key issues in discussions between the parties.

He, however, disclosed that South Sudan President Salva Kiir was opposed to the suggestion of returning the country back to the original 10 states. South Sudan currently has 32 states.

On Wednesday, parties signatory to the revitalized peace accord failed to agree on the numbers of states South Sudan should have.

Speaking to reporters after a two-day meeting of the parties in Juba, South Africa's special envoy to South Sudan, David Mabuza said the parties were now considering two options on the number of states.

“We are going to finalize the issue of the states and boundaries in the next 10 days,” he said.

The meeting of the parties was attended by Mabuza and the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) special envoy to South Sudan, Ambassador Ismail Wais.

Lam Akol, a member of South Sudan Opposition Alliance (SSOA) said they needed a win-win situation after the parties failed to reach a compromise on the number of states.

“We are likely to see between 10 and 32 states after what transpired during the meeting of the parties,” he remarked.

Early last month, President Salva Kiir and the country's opposition leader Riek Machar agreed to delay key benchmarks in the peace agreement by 100 days.

The delay in forming a national unity government on November 12 came after Machar's group raised concerns that the country's security arrangements are still incomplete.

South Sudan descended into civil war in mid-December 2013 when President Kiir accused his former deputy Machar of plotting a coup, allegations the latter denied.

In September last year, the country's rival factions signed a revitalized peace deal to end the civil war that killed tens of thousands of people and displaced millions.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

27,145 students to sit secondary school exams in S. Sudan

Sudan Tribune - Sun, 08/12/2019 - 07:58

December 7, 2019 (JUBA) – A total of 27,145 students will sit this year's South Sudanese secondary exams countrywide, an official disclosed.

A classroom session at a school in South Sudan's Northern Bahr el Ghazal state (Photo courtesy of UNICEF)

Speaking to reporters in Juba on Friday, Simon Nyok Deng, the secretary-general for the national examinations council, said 7,763 girls will sit secondary school leaving exams from December 16-24.

He said secondary school exams will be conducted in 261 centres across the country.

The official, however, downplayed fears of insecurity saying the government has secured all examination centres across the country.

“The national examinations in the Republic of South Sudan are treated as high stake examinations and therefore they are guarded by a well-disciplined team of national security and police,” he said.

The exams, Deng said, will be distributed in various parts of the country with the exception of Latjor and Maiwut States where no student registered following the closure of schools within the region.

“Latjor and Maiwut have not presented their candidates due to the closure of schools during the conflict. They are now reopening the schools and they have no candidates who are prepared for the exams,” he stressed.

South Sudan has one of the world's highest illiteracy rates due to the civil war that has killed nearly 400,000 people and displaced millions since mid-December 2013.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

Flooding causes extreme destruction in South Sudan: IOM

Sudan Tribune - Sun, 08/12/2019 - 07:10

December 7, 2019 (JUBA) – Unprecedented rains have caused flooding that has affected an estimated one million people in South Sudan, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) revealed.

A heavily flooded area in a remote part of South Sudan (Getty)

The agency, in a statement extended to Sudan Tribune, said heavy floods have displaced thousands from homes and destroyed livelihoods.

“The level of destruction caused by the floods is unfathomable. People have nowhere to sleep, children are sick, there is no food to eat,” said IOM South Sudan Chief of Mission, Jean-Philippe Chauzy.

“We have rolled up our sleeves and we will continue to do everything we can to help alleviate the misery caused by these floods,” he added.

According to the agency, in Unity region's Mankien and Bentiu towns, it provided shelter and non-food such as blankets, mosquito nets and plastic sheeting for temporary shelters to 3,000 households.

The water, sanitation and hygiene team distributed aqua tabs and filter cloths used to treat the water consumed by 3,000 households, IOM noted, adding that 6,000 households received similar relief items in Upper Nile region's Ulang and Gumruk towns.

“We cannot forget that in crises, vulnerable populations, especially women and children, are more likely to face gender-based-violence and other kinds of abuse,” stressed Chauzy.

“Protection and safeguarding are at the cornerstone of all of our activities and it is important that as we provide immediate emergency relief we also tackle protection issues,” he added.

IOM said it is, in collaboration with partners, ramping up its humanitarian response to affected communities in counties declared to be in a state of emergency.

According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA), more than 908,000 people have been affected by heavy rainfall and subsequent flooding, of whom 620,000 needed humanitarian assistance.

In October, the South Sudanese President Salva Kiir declared a state of emergency in the flood-affected areas of the country.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

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