Towards self-determination and self-reliance

The historic elections are now over. Important as they were, we must now shift focus and gear to what lies ahead. This is not to devalue the recent elections. Indeed, many Southern Sudanese voted for the first time in their lives in the elections. However, it was just a step towards the ultimate dream of every Southerner embodied in self-determination.


With a new mandate, H.E. Salva Kiir Mayardit, the President of the Government of Southern Sudan has unveiled his vision and vowed to remain true to the ideals that inspired the liberation struggle over two decades ago. Though many of the liberation veterans have fallen, those who remain, like in a relay race, must finish the race and bequeath a free country to the future generations.


The President has promised to unite the country; to nurture sustainable peace; to assure freedom so that every citizen may walk tall in his/her country; and to deliver an environment conducive for all the citizens to live dignified lives both now and in the future. “A government that is not capable of ensuring those basic needs to its people brings disrepute to itself and shall be a disgrace to the country and people. That I shall not allow to happen under my watch”, the President has vowed.

 


President Kiir during the recent cabinet swearing in ceremony [Photo: John Agou Wuoi]


To deliver these dividends of peace and many more, the President has unveiled a multi-pronged strategy that will encompass rural transformation; better education; vibrant health systems; extensive physical infrastructure; robust public service; sustainable peace, security and the rule of law; affirmative action for the marginalized citizens such as youth and women; true reconciliation; befitting appreciation for the martyrs, war veterans, heroes, heroines and their families; integrity in the management of public assets; and protection of the flora and fauna.


But, even as the Government of Southern Sudan prioritizes the strategy above, the self-determination referendum will also remain one of its key commitments. Undoubtedly, 2011 is a momentous year in the history of Southern Sudan. It is the year that will mark an ultimate milestone in the liberation journey as the Southern Sudanese exercise their right to self-determination. The government will work to ensure that the referendum is held in good time as provided for by the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA).


These are the goals that Government of Southern Sudan commits itself to deliver to the electorate. They are achievable goals, but only when those who are charged with responsibility in government do their honest part. The President promises that he will ensure that his cabinet, advisors and the independent institutions will show nothing less than full commitment to ensure full delivery of the pledges in the coming five years and beyond.


In the endeavour to deliver these fruits of peace to the people, the President has cautioned all leaders to serve with humility. “None of us should assume primacy, even symbolically, over his brothers and sisters or over our people. If there is at all any entity in Southern Sudan which must have primacy, it is The People”, he has emphasized.


With God’s help, we shall succeed!! 


Out-of-Country Registration and Voting web site


For more information on eligibility, locations, enquiries, registration guides, frequently asked questions, and much more please visit http://www.southernsudanocv.org/


Message from the late hero Dr. John Garang de Mabior


Dr. Garang shakes hands with the ill-fated helicopter crew just before he departed on his last trip

 

"I and those who joined me in the bush and fought for more than twenty years, have brought to you CPA in a golden plate. Our mission is accomplished. It is now your turn, especially those who did not have a chance to experience bush life. When time comes to vote at referendum, it is your golden choice to determine your fate. Would you like to vote to be second class citizens in your own country? It is absolutely your choice".

 

Dr. John Garang de Mabior
Rumbek, Southern Sudan.
May 15,2005