ZTE donates waterproof bags to schoolchildren

JUBA, 9 September 2013 (NASS) - A Chinese telecommunication company, Zhongxing Telecommunication Equipment (ZTE) has donated over one thousand waterproof bags to schoolchildren in Uror county of Jonglei state.


The donation is part of over ten thousand bags that has been pledged by Company to enable the school children protect their books during the rainy season. The donation was handed over to Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin, the minister of Foreign Affairs who also doubles as the Member of Parliament representing Uror County.


Receiving the gifts at the ceremony over the weekend, Dr. Benjamin hailed the company saying the children of Uror will forever appreciate the donation in their quest to seek knowledge and face the challenges of nation building.

 


A representative of ZTE (r) shows Dr. Benjamin the sample of the waterproof bags, Looking on (l) is Ambassador Qiang
[Photo: by Ajang Monychol]


Speaking at the same occasion, Chinese Ambassador to South Sudan, Ma Qiang said the donation is “just a small portion of my country's and the big ones are on the way coming”. He said China plans to build schools and setup a university in the country.


In another development, the Eritrean government has reaffirmed its commitment to enhance bilateral relation with South Sudan. Hon. Osman Saleh, Eritrea's Foriegn Affairs minister said good relations with South Sudan is crucial in addressing issues of regional integration.


The visiting foreign minister, said the bond between Eritrea and South Sudan is very strong and reiterated it is the wish of his government to continue such a cordial relations.  


Reported by Martin Jada, News Agency of South Sudan (NASS)


Heads of states from the Great Lakes region calls for peaceful resolution of DRC conflict

JUBA, 7 September 2013 - Five Heads of the states from the Great Lakes region yesterday concluded the 7th summit of heads of states and Government of the International Conference on the Great Lakes region in the Ugandan capital, Kampala.

 

Presidents, H.E Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit of South Sudan, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni of Uganda, Paul Kagame of Rwanda, Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania, and Joseph Kabila of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) took part in the summit besides other regional representatives. 

 

Besides addressing key challenges to stablity and development in the region, the heads of states during the one day meeting also discussed ways of peacefully resolving the conflict in the DRC between the Government and the M-23 rebels fighting in the eastern part of the country.


After the meeting, South Sudan’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin said that the meeting condemned the recent escalating security situation in the DRC’s eastern region and called for a peacefully resolution of the conflict. He said both sides have been urged to resume talks within three days and reach an agreement in 14 days.

 


H.E Gen. Kiir signing the communique at the closure of the summit
[Photo: Mabith Ring]

 

The conference was started by a ministerial meeting of both Foreign and Defense ministers in the 12 states of the Great Lakes region as well as the Chief of Staff of armies.

The Leaders and Governments at the end of the conference signed a communiqué that outlined the way forward to maintaining security and stability in the region.


President Kiir and the accompanying delegation returned on Friday (yesterday). Upon arrived he was received by his Vice President James Wani Igga and Cabinet minister Dr. Martin Elia Lomoro at Juba International airport.

 

Reported by Mabith Ring


Vocational training centers across the country to embark on long term courses

JUBA, 6 September 2013 - The Juba Multi-Service Training Centre has for the first time enrolled over 200 trainees in long term courses in various fields ranging from auto motive, electricity, carpentry, joinery and many others. The training aims at providing the youth with careful tested vocational training support skills that will guarantee employment in the labour market.


The national Undersecretary for labour madam Helen Achiro Lotara officially opened the training season yesterday for over seven hundred trainees across the national vocational training centers of Malakal, Wau and Juba.


In her opening remarks, she assures the trainees that the skills they are going to learn are more technical and importance for nation building. She said the national Ministry of Labour Public Service and Human Resource Development will work hand in hand with the private training providers to support the youths by creating job opportunities through skills transfer.

 


some of the youth who will benefit from the long terms courses
[Photo: by Justin Jaba Joseph]


Because of lack of skills to the youth, she said South Sudan today is experiencing a new trend where companies coming in are employing foreigners in carpentry, auto motive, plumbing and building. “I will tell them that no we already have centers that are training people in the same category,” Helen Achiro explained.


She asserted that it is the responsibility of the government to ensured that this companies coming to the country must avail job opportunities to our people. “If they don’t we will have to ensure that we push for it, like now we are going to have serious negotiation with the oil industry to employ graduate of vocational training centers” Madam Achiro said.


The Juba Multi-service Training Centre mission is to provide effective and efficient skills trainers, strong public private partnership providing equitable access and providing self-employment job creations which are centre for nation building, peace and reconciliation across the Country.


Director General for Vocational Training Centers Rev. John Chol Daau, express concern on the good turns up of the trainees in all the VTCs across the Nation. He asserted it was a long terms program with new curriculum that was suitable in the labour market, which he said needs a collective support from our development partners being International Labour Organization (ILO), Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and others.


Director for MTC Juba Mr. Aligo Manasseh Khamis asserted that they are concern to prepare human resource for self-reliant living through the provision of skills training that are highly employable in the contemporary labour market.


Reported by Justin Jada Joseph


Workshop on smart agriculture for increased productivity concludes in Juba

JUBA, 6 September 2013 – A two-day dialogue workshop on climate and smart agriculture for increased productivity of crops, livestock, and forestry production in South Sudan has been concluded yesterday in Juba.


The workshop organized by the research department of the national ministry of agriculture, forestry, animal resources, fishers, tourism, cooperatives and rural development in collaborating with the association for strengthening agricultural resources for Southern and Central Africa aimed at exploring avenues for sustainable and improved livelihood and income for the rural based people of South Sudan.


Edward Andrew Ashiek, Head of Agro Meteorology, South Sudan Metrological Department underscored the importance of availing "important information on climate change" to the citizens, saying it is crucial in mitigating some of the effects of climatic change.


“Installation of advanced technology to disseminate and deliver weather information and severe weather warnings via television, radio, mobiles, websites and newspapers is crucial in keeping the citizens informed thereby making them take informed decisions”, he said. He outlined full establishment of national metrological services, strengthening of the country’s data base system, establishment of upper air stations among others as measures that can help increase productivity in the country.

 

 
A map extract showing regional weather forecasts
 

 

Another presenter Wani James, a representative of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization in South Sudan said lack of technological input, quality seeds to the farmers in production areas, floods, birds such as the red-billed (quelea quelea) and pests are serious challenge to farmers in South Sudan.


Extensive poverty, skewed income distribution, deteriorated infrastructure, poor input supply chain, lack of effective and extension services among other have been outlined as constraints to increased productivity in the country.

 

Reported by Gabriel Lawrence


AU welcomes the outcome of the summit meeting between the Presidents of Sudan and South Sudan

JUBA, 5 September 2013 - The Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union (AU), Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, welcomes the outcome of the Summit meeting between Presidents Omar Hassan Al Bashir of the Republic of Sudan and H.E Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit of the Republic of South Sudan, held in Khartoum, on 3 September 2013.


“I am encouraged by the steps taken by the two Presidents to conclude the Summit with positive outcomes, particularly the decision by the Government of Sudan to indefinitely suspend the shutdown of the transportation and processing of oil from South Sudan” Dr.Nkosazana who made the remarks in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa today commended the two Presidents for the activation of the two Committees created to oversee the implementation of the 27 September 2012 Cooperation Agreements.


She further welcomed the commitment by the two Presidents to continue their engagement on all outstanding issues, particularly those relating to Abyei. The Chairperson also urged all stakeholders and the citizens of both countries to continue to support their leaders in their efforts to address the outstanding challenges.


Statement on oil sales update

JUBA, 5 September 2013 - The ministry of Petroleum, Mining and Industry (MPMI) has announced it has sold a total of 9.79 million (Nine Million, Seven Hundred and Ninety Thousand) barrels of crude oil from both the Nile and Dar Blends since the resumption of oil production in May this year, earning a gross revenue of US $969 million (nine hundred sixty nine million US Dollars).

 

Based on the sales, the Government of the Republic of Sudan will receive a total of two hundred and thirty eight million (US $238 million) in transit, transportation and processing fee amounting to US $91 million and US $147 million as per the Transitional Financial Arrangements (TFA), the ministry stated in a press statement.

 

The ministry is obligated to make the information on oil production available to the citizens of South Sudan and all stakeholders for the purposes of accountability and transparency.

 

"I take this opportunity to express my optimism that the renewed spirit of cooperation between the Republic of South Sudan and the Government of the Republic of Sudan will continue to guarantee the undisrupted flow of South Sudan crude oil to the international markets for the mutual benefit of both countries", the minister of Petroleum, Mining and Industry Hon. Stephen Dhieu Dau said.

 


Reported by Matata Safi 


Information Ministry release staff of Abyei origin as October referendum approaches

JUBA, 04 September 2013 (NASS) – All the sons and daughters of Abyei working with the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting were officially released yesterday by the minister Hon. Michael Makuei lueth in order to take part in the preparations for the upcoming referendum due to take place by October this year.


Among them serving in top positions included Director General of Information, Mustafa Biong Majak, the Director General of South Sudan Television, Arob Bagat Tinglout, the Acting Director of the News Agency of South Sudan (NASS), Mr. Phillip Dhil and some junior staffs.


The minister in a meeting with the released staffs said their salaries and the rest of their entitlements would continue as normal in accordance with what is agreed upon from the presidency. He adviced them to work hard in the mobilization process in order to attained successful results.

 


Minister Makuei in a meeting with the officials who hail from Abyei before their release
[Photo: Oliver Francis]
 


He said the government is rallying behind the people of Abyei in order to ensure good results that will bring lasting peace to its people.


In related development, Michael Makuei lueth met the head of the United Nations interim security for Abyei (UNISFA), Mr Getachew Selben. The meeting discussed the on-going arrangements and preparation for the upcoming Abyei plebiscite.

 


Hon. Makuei chating with the Getachew
[Photo: Oliver Francis]


In his words after the meeting, Getachew said the situation in Abyei is generally calm.


Reported by Oliver Francis News Agency of South Sudan NASS.


Press Release on this year's World Literacy day

JUBA, 4 September 2013 – 195 member states of UNESCO worldwide, South Sudan included, will on September 8, celebrate International Literacy Day under the “Literacies for the 21st Century”.

 

Please click here to read the joint press statement from the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MoEST), United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and Save the Children on this year's celebrations.
 


Investigation into the Un-procedural transfer of USD 7,959,400 completed

JUBA, 4 September 2013 - Please click here to read the Press Release on Completion of Investigation into the Un-procedural transfer of USD 7,959,400 to Kenya.


Parliament elects new speaker

JUBA, 3 September 2013 [Gurtong] – The South Sudan parliament yesterday unanimously appointed a new Speaker, Manas Magok Rundial, from the Greater Upper Nile region following the resignation of James Wani Igga now serving as the country’s Vice President.


Two deputy Speakers were also elected. Hon. Mark Nyipoch from Western Bahr el Ghazal and Hon. Yasmin Samuel from Eastern Equatoria states respectively were the first and second deputies ousting ex-deputies of the House Hon. Daniel Awet and Fatuma Nyawang.


Magok’s appointment came following endorsement by the members of parliament from the Greater Upper Nile region before his final nomination by the national legislature beating other supposed candidates such as the ex-minister of Justice John Luk Jok and former deputy Speaker Hon. Fatuma Nyawang.

 


Members of parliament in a previous sitting
[Photo: file]
 


Committed member of the SPLM, Magok made to the parliament since the inception of the August House after the establishment of the Southern Sudan then semi-autonomous government in 2005.


A Christian by religion, Magok’s main challenge as the Speaker will be monitoring the executive in executing an austerity budget midst hard economic challenge the fledgling nation is undergoing and addressing insecurity in the country.

 

By Wake Simon Wudu


Egypt pledges to build capacity of information staff

JUBA, 1 September 2013 (NASS) – A number of staff from the ministry of Information and Broadcasting could soon benefit from a capacity building scheme aimed at improving their skills following an announcement by the Egyptian ambassador to South Sudan.


Ambassador Ayman Elgammal made the announcement in a recent meeting with Hon. Michael Makuei, South Sudan’s minister for Information and Broadcasting. The Egyptian diplomat said the courses would be conducted in Cairo and will provide much needed skills. Many South Sudanese have already benefited from a number of Egyptian scholarships in the recent past.


The meeting also discussed areas of strengthening bilateral relationship between Juba and Cairo. In a statement to reporters, the minister commended Egypt’s contribution towards the development of the country and assured of government’s readiness to cooperate with the Egyptian government.


The Egyptian ambassador also announced the grant opening of a medical center in Jonglei’s Capital Bor constructed with funds from the Embassy. He said the health facility will open its doors to the public early this month.


In another news development, Minister Makuei met with the Special Representative of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) Helde Johnson on September 29 where they discussed a number of issues. The two among other discussed  the conflict in Jonglei as well as the process of speeding up the implementation of the media bills.


Johnson assured of the commitment of the UN to cooperate with the government to bring about peace and stability among all the citizen of south Sudan.


Reported by: Francis Oliver, News Agency of South Sudan (NASS)


EU Ambassador pledges to resolve problem delaying the government printer

JUBA, 1 September 2013 (NASS) - The European Union Ambassador to South Sudan Sven Kuhn has promised to work with the ministry of Information to stem out the bottlenecks delaying the operationalization of the Government Printing Press (GPP).


Ambassador Kuhn made the pledge in a recent meeting with the minister of Information and Broadcasting Hon. Michael Makuei. The government printer, a donation from the European Union (EU) through the Norwegian Church Aid was expected to start operations early July this year.

 


 Staff of GGP at work, technical difficulties has delayed start of publication.
[Photo: Oliver Francis)
 


However due to "technical reasons", production has been delayed. It [the printing press] was expected to aid the government print its document within the country. Most government publications are printed from the neighboring countries of Kenya, Uganda and Egypt thereby making it very expensive. The diplomat also reaffirmed EU’s commitment to back up ministry of Information effort's to improve the quality of media service in the country.

 

Reported by Francis Oliver News Agency of South Sudan (NASS)


“The problem of street children is a national problem that needs a national solution”, Gender minister

JUBA, 30 August 2013 – The growing number of street children in the country’s towns and capitals is a national problem that needs a national solution, Gender Child and Social welfare minister Hon. Awut Deng Acuil has said.


The national solution, she said is anchored on “every citizen in South Sudan having the feeling that the fatherless and mothers children roaming the country’s cold streets are the leaders of tomorrow”.


There are different reasons that explain why many children in South Sudan find themselves in the streets. Hon. Acuil said the reasons various from child to child. "There are children who have lost both parents, there are those with single parents, There are also children who have parents but the family environment cannot allow them to stay at home", She explained.

 


Ann Itto Acting Secretary General of SPLM and Hon. Acuil (c) during the meeting at the SPLM secretariat
[Photo: Matata Safi]


While in a consultative meeting with members of the ruling party, Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) on Thursday, the minister said the problem is cutting across all the ten states and affecting every family in the country.


“The worst thing is, these children sleep in the open, it rains on them, the sun beats them. They eat the food that is thrown away from restaurants and homes” the gender minister decried. While in the markets,  the children are always subjected to all forms of abuses. They are often beaten, sexual abused, she said. Most of the children she spoke to expressed willingness to live in child friendly environment if provided.

 


Hon. Acuil chats with some of the street kids in Wau
[Photo: Simon Akol]


“It is not our wish to be on the streets, we need education, we need clothing. Some of us want to join the army and become like our leader Dr. John Garang de Mabior” the minister quoted Simon Melong Akol, one of the street children as saying.


Hon. Acuil appealed to Parents, trade unionists, religious leaders, business community, traditional leaders, international partners, foreign missions, governments both national and states to regard the fight against street children as a national call that requires immediate intervention.


Though there is no established data on the number of street children in the country, the minister said it’s obvious that the numbers are high. The minister who visited Western Bahr el Ghazal and Warrap states early in week said a total of 403 street children were registered in the two states alone. Accompanied by a team from the ministry and a number of volunteers, Hon. Acuil said she in a drive to tour all the ten states in order to understand the scope of the challenge in hand.


She said her ministry has launched child mobilization intuitive (CMI) aimed at identifying the street children. She said the ministry of Gender in collaboration with the ministry of Education is working to establish and identify schools to which these children can be enrolled to acquire education.


Reported by Matata Safi & Simon Matiop Akol News Agency of South Sudan (NASS) (NASS)


Kenya pledges to deepen economic ties with South Sudan

MOMBASA, 30 August 2013 (NASS) - The President of the Republic of Kenya, Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta has pledged to deepen economic ties with South Sudan in a bid to enhance development in the two countries.


President Kenyatta said it is the mandate and commitment of his government to encourage greater collaboration with the regional partners especially South Sudan as the region edges towards a federation.


The Kenyan president made these remarks while commissioning berth number 19 at the Kenyan coastal city of Mombasa. This is one of the largest berths in the East African coastline with the capacity to handle larger ships.


According to the Kenya Revenue Authority Commissioner, Beatrice Memo, South Sudan, being a big importer in the region, will benefit a lot from this berth number 19 which will also bring down high costs and shorten time to clear goods at the port.


Based on the current developments, South Sudan has expressed interest to join Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda in the East African infrastructural project that has commenced in Kampala Uganda to address the challenges in the movement of goods and services.

 


Presidents Kenyatta, Kagame and Museveni commission the berth.
[Photo: Ajang Monychol]


The delegation from South Sudan at the event comprise of the minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr Barnaba Marial Benjamin, the minister of Petroleum Stephen Dhieu Dau, the minister of Electricity Jemma Nunu Kumba, the minister of Roads Danhier Kwong and other top government officials. They were welcomed warmly to the East African Summit to state the country’s position.


This infrastructural project is aimed at strengthening the East African infrastructural network to boost cross border as well deepening the integration of East African economies.


Dr Benjamin said the secretary general of the East African Community is expected to arrive in Juba in due course to discuss modalities of how South Sudan can join the East African trading block.


Reported by Martin Jada Gabriel, News Agency of South Sudan (NASS)


Minister pledges support for media houses

JUBA, 28 August 2013 (NASS) - The minister of Information and Broadcasting, Hon. Michael Makuei Lueth has assured the media houses that his ministry will protect them from all forms of harassment which their journalists face in their line of duty. He said journalists would no more be frightened unless on things that are not media-related.


Hon. Makuei made this pledge while brainstorming with journalists on their challenges and the way forward for effective service delivery. The minister also challenged the media houses to do more to promote the county adding that South Sudan is not known well even within Africa leave alone the rest of the continents.


“If you just move out of the Republic of South Sudan and said you are from South Sudan you will be asked where that is. That means most countries do not know about South Sudan”, he explained. Hon. Makuei further warned the media houses to work within their agreed mandates and not encroach into issues that are beyond them.


Mr. Gabriel Shadar who is one of the prominent journalists working with Miraya FM said the journalists now feel safeer if the minister is going to implement the plans discussed. He urged the ministry to expedite the rollout of the media bills to safeguard the interests of the journalists.

 


Hon Makuei welcoming the Chinese ambassador.
[Photo: Ajang Monychol]


In a related development, Hon. Makuei called on the Chinese government to speed up the funding meant for the migration of broadcasting in South Sudan from analogue to digital. The money is supposed to be channeled through Exim bank.


The minister also called on the Chinese government to use its position to resolve the ongoing oil problem with Sudan saying any shutdown by Khartoum will not be revived by South Sudan. The minister made these appeals when he met the new Chinese ambassador to South Sudan, Ma Qiang, last Friday.


Reported by Martin Jada Gabriel, News Agency of South Sudan (NASS)


South Sudan Final Environmental and Social management Framework document

 JUBA, 27 August 2013 - The World Bank (WB) and bilateral donors are supporting efforts by the Government of the Republic of South Sudan to deliver services to the population through supporting the development of the Local Government Service Delivery Project (LGSD).

 

LGSD aims at supporting improvements in local governance and deliver services to communities through strengthening of community engagement and local government capacities in planning, implementation and oversight of local development activities.

 

Please click here to read the final Environmental and Social Management Framework (ESMF) document .


James Wani Igga appointed Vice President

JUBA, 23 August 2013 – The speaker of parliament Hon. James Wani Igga has been appointed vice president of the republic of South Sudan.

 

Hon. Igga's appointment according to the republican decree issued by the President of the Republic H. E Salva Kiir Mayardit that was read on the national Television (SSTV) on Friday evening,  takes immediate effect as of the day of the announcement.

 


H.E James Wani Igga.
[Photo: File]


He replaces the former vice president Riek Machar Tenny who was removed in a major cabinet reshuffle more about a month ago. No appointment however has been so far for the position of the speaker of parliament. We will bring you the full text of the decree in due course.

 

Reported by Matata Safi
 

 


Police arrests three foreigners involved in armed robbery, calls for vigilance

JUBA, 23 August 2013 - Security operatives in Juba on Thursday night arrested three suspected armed robbers believed to be members of the notorious armed gang causing sleepless nights for most residents of Juba in recent weeks.

 

Anthony Mateso, Johnson Marunda both Ugandan nationals and Mako Richardson a Kenyan national, were paraded together with their loots at the ministry of Interior headquarters this morning. The police also recovered one AK 47 rifle, a pistol and rounds of live ammunitions from them.

 

The deputy minister of Interior Gen. Augustino Jadallah said the robbers numbering five, where moving in a Toyota Reguis motor vehicle registration number CE 397T when the police intercepted them at Suku Melisa in Munuki, a city suburb. After a serious exchange of fire, two of them, he said  managed to escape on motorbikes commonly known as Bodo boda, while the three were over powered by the police who later arrested them. 

 


Firearms recovered from the robbers
[Photo: Matata Safi]
 

 

“These criminals, collaborated with some of our nationals, they went and stole a safe from one Eritrean businessman and looted his shop” said Hon. Gen. Jadallah. “One of them [while pointing at Johnson Marunda] had the gun and started firing at our forces”, he said. Gen. Augustino said, the suspects will help police uprehend those still at large.

 

“I would like to pass this message to our brothers from the neighboring countries, if you are here for the benefit of business, you better do your business, do not come here to create insecurity. We love people, we respect people and we would want you to respect us too”, Gen. Jadallah warned. South Sudan, he said  is in a process of nation building and welcomes people to help develop it  but not to destroy.

 


The vehicle the robbers were driving
[Photo: Matata Safi]

 

 

The deputy Interior minister called on all South Sudanese to be vigilant and report any specious elements who may want to derail the peace that has been “highly paid for”. He further appealed for calm saying the police will crake down on the criminals wherever they may be hiding and we will surely bring them to Justice. He said, the three will first receive medical treatment before they are produced before courts of law to answer their charges.

 

In a related development the minister said another vehicle used by robbers who stole 90,000 South Sudanese pounds from an identified woman in St. Kizito has also been impounded and currently under police custody. He said a number of suspects have also been arrested in connecting with the murder of two brothers who were gunned down in Hai Tharawa last Sunday.

 

Reported by Matata Safi


$33 million additional CHF fund allocated for people in need

JUBA, 22 August 2013 - The South Sudan Common Humanitarian Fund (CHF) has allocated US$33 million for life-saving assistance until the end of the year to people displaced by violence, returnees, refugees and vulnerable host communities. The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has said.

 

The money, according to a UNOCHA press statement will be channeled to providing clean water and sanitation, education, livelihoods support, healthcare, household items, nutrition, mine clearance and protection.

 

“The money will help people in South Sudan who have been worst affected by violence, disease and displacement. Our goal is to make sure aid gets to those who need it most and as quickly as possible,” said Toby Lanzer, the UN’s Humanitarian Coordinator in South Sudan.

 


Toby Lanzer

 

The CHF is a tool that provides funding for the most urgent priorities for humanitarian action, and ensures that funds are available for rapid response to emergencies. The fund is managed by the Humanitarian Coordinator, with support from an advisory board of donors and UN and NGO representatives.

 

To date this year, Australia, Belgium, Denmark, Ireland, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom have all provided generously to the fund, Lanzer said. With the new allocation of $33 million, the CHF will have channeled around $90 million to NGOs and UN agencies in 2013.


Reported by Matata Safi


President Bashir invites H.E Kiir to Khartoum

ADDIS ABABA, 21 August 2013 (NASS) - The Sudanese President Omer Hassan al Bashir has reiterated his readiness to receive his southern counterpart President Salva Kiir Mayardit in Khartoum for talks aimed at resolving the remaining post independence issues as well as to strengthen bilateral relations between the two countries.

 

The Sudanese president made the announcement yesterday in a meeting with South Sudan’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin at the sidelines of Zenawi memorial at Addis Park. As per the invitation Dr. Benjamin said, the President is expected to travel to Khartoum later this month.

 

The invitation, he said is a good gesture towards creating good neighborly and sisterly relations with Sudan. The minister also said President Bashir congratulated the newly formed cabinet adding that he [President Bashir] is “looking forward for fruitful cooperation” with the new government.

 

The two heads of states are expected to further discuss avenues to resolve the remains sticky issues of border demarcations, claimed and disputed areas, the final status of the Abyei as well as security arrangement among others. Prior to the president’s visit, Dr. Benjamin is expected to travel to Khartoum to make necessary arrangements for the president's visit.

 

Reported by Martin Jada Gabriel, News Agency of South Sudan (NASS)


Health minister urges parents to immunize children

JUBA, 21 August 2013 - The national minister of health Dr. Riek Gai Kok has called on all parents and caretakers to ensure all children under the age of five are immunized against the six child killer diseases.


In a meeting with UNICEF delegation headed by its new country representative Dr. Iyorlumum J Uhaa, South Sudan’s health minister Dr. Gai underscored the importance of immunizing all children especially against the deadly polio virus. The outbreak of the disease, he said has been reported in the East African countries, which he said puts South Sudan at a higher risk of importing the disease.


Dr Gai outlined vaccinating all children under the age of five against the six killer diseases, minimizing child mortality rates, eradicating birth related deaths and effective delivery of health care services to the people of south Sudan both at the national and state levels as his eminent targets.

 


Health minister Dr. Gai 
[Photo: William Jufur]


Mean while Dr. Uhaa assured of the commitment of his agency in joining efforts with the government, particularly the health ministry in ensuring children are protected against these preventable diseases. He said there is an ongoing vaccination campaign in the country and urged all parents to have their children immunized.


Reported by William Jufur


South Sudan Joint Security Committee arrives in Khartoum

KHARTOUM 21 August 2013 (NASS) - South Sudan and Sudan Joint Security Committee (JSC) yesterday embarked on their third round meeting centered on the security matters between the two countries at the Sudanese capital Khartoum. 


The South Sudanese delegation was upon arrival at Khartoum International Airport received by the senior security officials from Khartoum government. South Sudan’s Joint Security Committee spokesperson Brig. Bior Kuer Deng said the meeting was to further deliberate on he issues agreed on their last two meetings of the joint committee. He reiterated South Sudan’s commitment to implement the agreed resolution reached between the two sides.


Meanwhile Mr. Almuez Faruq the Sudanese representative expressed the readiness of Sudan to solve the security issue in order to bring peace and stability among the people of the two countries.


Reported by: Francis Oliver, News Agency of South Sudan (NASS)


“Late Zenawi has been the voice of the voiceless in Africa”, Dr. Benjamin

ADDIS ABABA, 20 August 2013 (NASS) – The Special Envoy of the President of the Republic and South Sudan’s Foreign Affairs Minister Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin has said the late Prime Minister of Ethiopia Meles Zenawi was the voice of the voiceless in Africa.

 

Dr. Benjamin was speaking at the occasion to make the first anniversary of the late Prime minister Zenawi this morning when he made the remarks. He said the death of the late Ethiopian Prime Minister was not only a loss to the people of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, but also a great loss to the people of South Sudan.

 

“Late Zenawi was the voice of the voiceless in Africa in so many issues, he was an advocate of peace, security and economic development” Dr. Benjamin said. It’s through the efforts of late Zenawi that South Sudan today enjoys relative peace, Dr. Benjamin remarked. Moreso, he said the Lamu oil pipeline Project that is expected to provide an alternative export route for South Sudan’s crude oil to the international market is one of the many initiatives that the Zenawi can be remembered for.

 


Dr. Benjamin (r) joins regional leaders in unveiling the commemorative stone laid at the newly designated Meles Zenawi Memorial Park
[Photo: Martin Jada]

 

Regional leaders including Presidents Omar Hassan el Bashir of Sudan, Ismail Omar Guelleh of Djibouti and Hassan Sheikh Mohamud of Somalia, government representatives and foreign dignitaries gathered in the Ethiopian Capital Addis Ababa to commemorate the anniversary of the late Ethiopian Prime Minister Zenawi who passed away a year ago in the Brussels, Belgium.

 

Dr. Benjamin called upon the incumbent Prime Minister Haile Mariam Desalegn to embrace the legacy of Zenawi to work for the peace in the region and unity in the continent. “The people of the Republic of South Sudan are praying so hard to see peace in the region especially between Ethiopia and Eritrea, peace in DRC, Central African Republic, Egypt, and Sudan,” the minister told the gathering.

 


Dr. Benjamin shares a light moment with Sudanese President Bashir
[Photo: Martin Jada]

 

The heads of the states present pledged to embrace the “Zenawi legacy” to lead the region into peace and prosperity. They described the late as “a visionary and realistic leader” whose plans especially on agricultural transformation and climate change have left a remarkable impact in the region.

 

Reported by Martin Jada Gabriel News Agency of South Sudan NASS


Information minister advocates responsible journalism

JUBA, 16 August 2013 (NASS) - The minister of Information and Broadcasting Michael Makuei Lueth has warned all the private media houses operating in the country to practice responsible journalism and safeguard the country.

 


Hon Makuei and his deputy address staff of the ministry.
[Photo: Ajang Monychol]

“All the FMs that are running uncontrolled and scattered everywhere need to be looked into. Open shows and live contacts (telephone calls) should be limited to certain programs”, he advised. He said most of the programs broadcast over the private media houses especially FM radios are inappropriate and need to be addressed responsibly.


The minister made the remarks yesterday after his first general meeting with the directorates of the ministry. He also said the ministry will conduct workshops to educate the journalists on the media laws once they are signed by the President. He said that the ministry will enforce strict compliance with the laws and urged all concerned parties to respect the laws.


The minister further cautioned staff of the ministry to be diligent and stressed the issue of punctuality and observance of the working hours saying any negligence of duty will have consequences.

 


The deputy minister Rachel Nyadak Paul cuts a tape to mark her entry into the ministry.
[Photo: Ajang Monychol]


The deputy minister in the ministry Madam Rachel Nyadak Paul also expressed confidence that the ministry will not be the same any more saying she will work hand in hand with the minister to address the challenges and improve the working conditions there to boost productivity and service delivery. She urged the staff to embrace teamwork to deliver the mandate of the ministry.

 

Reported by Martin Jada Gabriel, News Agency of South Sudan (NASS)


Mining laws in the pipeline

JUBA, 16 August 2013 - The Ministry of Petroleum and Mining of the Republic of South Sudan has embarked on drawing guidelines and mechanisms on developing the mining industry in the country as an alternative source of the new nation’s economy.


On Thursday 15th August 2013 the Ministry organized a workshop on proposed mining taxation regime in which the stakeholders participated with an aim to ensure that schedules of royalties, minimum annual exploration expenditures, annual rents and fees, payable under the Mining Act 2012 are coordinated and agreed upon between the stakeholder ministries and are in line with the mining policy and international best practice.


Speaking to the press during the event the minister of Petroleum and Mining, Stephen Dhieu Dau said the workshop was intended to reach an agreement on the various fees in order to achieve a win-win situation whereby a conducive climate is created for investors to invest in the promising mining industry in South Sudan. At the same time the government wants to diversify resources by avoiding a dependence on one source which is oil.


He said the workshop, attended by national line ministries, representatives from the ten states and civil society organizations is part of final phase of the implementation of the Mining Act 2012. He said a circular on agreed schedules of royalties, and various fees and charges on mining activities will be issued and distributed to the stakeholders.


On the other hand, the Director General for the Directorate of Mining in the Ministry of Petroleum and Mining Arkangelo Okwang Oler said the workshop on the proposed taxation regime brings to an end all the processes relating to the mining regulations.


“The Mining Act 2012 that was signed into law by the President of the Republic Salva Kiir Maryardit is now going to be ready for implementation, because it is the regulations that implement the Mining Act. So, with this we are going to be left with securing a space for installing technological system and recruiting more staff to be able to start the mining sector”, Okwang said.


He cited the lack of vehicles to dispatch the staff to all parts of the country to monitor all types of illegal mining as one of the challenges the directorate faces. “Illegal mining is itself a challenge because the resource is a national one. It does not belong to individuals. We will have to deploy a huge number of our staff to ensure nobody is trafficking gold. Gold is a national resource that must benefit all of us”, Okwang said.


The Director General also warned illegal miners against the practice saying it is going to subject them to punishment according to the law of the land. He explained that the Minister of Petroleum and Mining had earlier issued a ministerial order prohibiting any illegal mining across the country. “My message to the public is that anybody who still thinks of carrying out illegal mining is a criminal and he is punishable by law”, he said.


He also explained that poor infrastructure such roads and bridges, lack of the electric power to run mining machineries are the other challenges slowing down the growth of the mining industry.


“Mining sector is very big, so we need roads and bridges to the mining areas and we need power in order to crash marbles for cement industry. Large scale mining will not take place unless we put in place the infrastructure”, he explained.


He urged the mining companies that are flocking into the country looking for investment opportunities in the mining sector to be patient until things are put in place so that issuance of mining licenses may commence.


The Republic of South Sudan contains many natural resources such as petroleum, iron ore, copper, chromium ore, zinc, and tungsten, mica, silver and gold.


Reported by Abraham Garang Ajang


Dr. Gai meets with the EU Ambassador

JUBA, 16 August 2013 - The national minister of Health Dr. Riek Gai Kok yesterday in his office held a meeting with European Union Ambassador Sven Kuhn where they extensively discussions areas of cooperation in the health sector as well as strengthening bilateral relation between the EU and South Sudan.


Dr. Gai reiterated his readiness to improve the health sector in the country. Though the challenges remain enormous, He said, the government is committed in ensuring delivery of health services to the people of South Sudan especially in rural areas.

 


Dr. Gai in a previuos photo is being received by the ministry staff after he was sworn in
[Photo: William Jufur]


Dr. Gai further told the Ambassador, addressing the challanges currently the national referral Juba teaching hospital and developing the human resource are top on his agenda for the ministry.


Meanwhile Ambassador Kuhn congratulated the minister on his new appointment and assured of the EU's continued commitment in partnering with the government in order to uplift the health sector in South Sudan.
He said, EU will continue to avail funds for its ongoing projects so as to improve the health situation at both the national and state levels.


Reported by William Jufur


New information minister pledges to improve working conditions

JUBA, 14 August 2013 (NASS) – Hon Michael Makuei Lueth, the new minister for Information and Broadcasting has pledged to work hand in hand with staff at the ministry to improve the working conditions.


He also promised to explore possibilities of better compensation for staff working under risky conditions such television and radio technicians who are exposed to electromagnetic radioactivity.


The new minister made these pledges yesterday when he visited the South Sudan Radio premises currently under construction at Bulluk and the transmission station at Gumbo.

 


Hon Makuei being received by top officers at the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.


He also promised to work on plans to increase the manpower with qualified cadre to deliver quality services across the ten states of South Sudan. He said the plan for recruitment of the new staff would be executed once the ongoing construction projects of South Sudan Radio and Television are completed.


Hon Makuei also acknowledged the good work of his predecessors including the late Dr Samson Kwaje, Gabriel Changson Chang, Paul Mayom and Dr Barnaba Marial Benjamin. He commended their efforts to develop media in South Sudan. He said he will work to ensure the establishment of a public broadcaster in the country.


Reported by Martin Jada Gabriel, News Agency of South Sudan (NASS)


“China has a strong position to influence relations with Sudan”, Chinese Special Envoy

JUBA, 14th August 2013 (NASS) – Owing to its influence on the oil industry in Sudan and South Sudan, China has a steady and strong position in repairing the relations between the two countries and facilitating progress towards lasting peace and prosperity, a Chinese diplomat has said.

 

The Chinese Special Representative for African Affairs Zhong Jianghua said his government is engaging the two governments in efforts to normalize cooperation and realize amiable neighbourly relations.

 


Dr. Benjamin chats with Mr. Jianghua
[Photo: Ajang Monychol]

 

The envoy disclosed this on Monday after a congratulatory meeting with the new minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin. 

 

He urged the government of Sudan to allow the flow of South Sudan’s oil through its oil infrastructure adding that “the two countries heavily need the oil revenues for development”.


Reported by Martin Jada Gabriel News Agency of South Sudan (NASS)


“Embrace teamwork if we are to be achievers”, Gender minister

JUBA, 14 August 2013 (NASS) - The newly appointed national minister of Gender, Child and Social Welfare Hon. Awut Deng Aciul has urged the staff of her ministry to embrace teamwork if they are to record any meaningful success.


“Teamwork is the only way we can be able to achieve what we want for this ministry and the people of South Sudan”, Hon Aciul said on Monday while being officially received at the ministry.

 

She said the work at the ministry is massive and called for committment and dedication. One of the major tasks of the ministry, she said, is tackling the problem of street children. She said her ministry will have to work with all players and the ten state’s ministries of Social Development ino rder to team up efforts to address the issue.

 


Hon. Awut Deng Acuil 
[Photo: Simon Matip Akol]

 


Like many of her fellow ministers, Hon. Aciul was received at the ministry with ululations, dancing and singing. Headed by the Undersecretary Esther Ikere Eluzai, the staff members thanked the President of the Republic of South Sudan H.E. Salva Kiir Mayardit for appointing Hon Acuil as the Gender minister.


After the meeting, Hon. Aciul visited the Physical Rehabilitation Centre (PRC), Rejaf School for the Blind and the Deaf along Nimule roads as well as the proposed ministry building along Yei road.


Reported by Simon Matiop Akol News Agency of South Sudan (NASS)


“Kiir reshuffled government on people's will”, Toposa women group

JUBA, 13 August 2013 - President Kiir received in his office today a delegation of women group from Toposa Community of Kapoeta South, Kapoeta East and Kapoeta North in Eastern Equatoria State.

 

The group, which was accompanied by the Easteren Equatoria State Governor Luis Lobong Lojore and the minister of National Security Gen. Obutu Mamur Mete congratulated H.E Kiir for reshuffling his government according to the “will of South Sudan people”.

 


President Kiir and the Toposa women group. On his right is Gen. Mamur while on the left is  
Governor Lojore
[Photo: Thomas Keneth]


In a press statement, the head of the delegation Ms. Hellen Orasio called on the people of South Sudan to be united behind the President, discard tribal difference and work for peace and development.


Reported by Thomas Kenneth


President Kiir to visit India

Juba 9 August 2013 - President of the Republic H.E Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit is set to visit India late this month on an official invitation by his Indian counterpart Pranab Mukherjee.


India’s special envoy to South Sudan Mr. P. S Raghavan met President Kiir this morning where he delivered the invitation and President Mukherjee’s message of strengthening bilateral relations between his country and the Republic of South Sudan.


South Sudan’s Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation minister Hon. Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin, said President Kiir during the meeting, discussed in a very positive manner issues of bilateral Relations, economic development and capacity building programs.

 


President Kiir shakes hands with Mr. Raghavan. Looking on is Dr. Benjamin South Sudan's Foreign Affairs minister
[Photo: Garang Thuc]


He said the president on behalf of the people and Government of South Sudan expressed the regrets to Indian Government through the special envoy, for the UNMISS Indian soldiers killed in Jonglei state by the militia groups.


Meanwhile Mr. Raghavan described the relations between India and South Sudan as “traditional and of a very long standing”. He reiterated to President Kiir India’s determination to continue and intensify cooperation with South Sudan.


Reported by Thomas Keneth


Over 60,000 return to Abyei

JUBA, 9 August 2013 - Aid agencies say some sixty thousand (60,000) returnees displaced from Abyei region by the May 2011 Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) invasion have already returned home ahead of the much anticipated referendum exercise scheduled for October this year.


An Abyei return tracking report for June and July this year showed that about 16,000 people have been verified as having returned to Abyei since June 2012. While the verification process did not capture returns in and around Agok in the south of the Abyei area, food partners monthly registration records reportedly suggest that another between 5,000 and 8,000 people have returned and settled in Agok, an areas known to many as Annet.

 

“Overall, partners estimate that up to 60,000 of the over 100,000 people displaced from Abyei in May 2011 have returned” the United Nation’s weekly bulletin reported. According to the verification report, there are around 3,500 people living in Abyei town.


Aid organizations are said to be responding to the needs of those who have returned to their homes, including by providing communities with seeds, tools and non-food items to "strengthen their resilience".


Although a number of schools in Abyei town have been rehabilitated, school enrollment, education partners say is much lower than anticipated.


Reported by Matata Safi


US $5million earmarked for fighting TB and child mortality rate

JUBA, 6 August 2013 - The Korean Foundation for International Health Care (KFIHC) has earmarked five million (USD$5million), United States Dollars an equivalent of SSP20,000,000 for the fight against Tuberculosis (TB) and infant mortality rate in South Sudan.


The Undersecretary in the ministry of Health Dr. Makor Koryom, revealed this yesterday while signing a memorandum of understanding with the South Korean organization. Dr. Koryom said the three-year project aims at reducing “the already high infant mortality rates” as well as curbing the spread of Tuberculosis in the country.


The funding project, he said will help government to improve the health sector, while on the order hand he said it will open a door of cooperation between the government of the people of South Korea and the Republic of South Sudan.

 


Dr. Makor and Mr. Sire exchange copies of the signed MOU
[Photo: William Jufur]
 


Mean while Mr. David Sire, the Secretary General of KFIHC lauded the government, particularly the national ministry of health for its readiness to partner with his organization in improving the health sector in South Sudan.


He assured of his country’s commitment in working with the government of South Sudan to bring what he described as “positive changes” in the health care system in the young country.
Furthermore, he promised his organization’s commitment to continue funding more projects in the coming years.


Reported by William Jufur