Northern Bahr el Gazal State-
Policy statement based on targeted challenges
The people of South Sudan have been subjected to untold humiliations and suffering by various regimes that came into being in Khartoum. The people of South Sudan, in particular our brothers and sisters from Aweil have seen destruction come their way and watched their loved ones killed. Children, women/girls are abducted and taken to slavery. The weak and the old-aged are summarily executed. Goats and cattle, which are the integral part of our pride and wealth, are looted; houses and crops burnt to ashes thus depriving people with shelter and food, which are basic human needs. This kind of brutal treatment of our people gave rise to widespread displacement, which resulted to diseases, malnutrition and more deaths.
It was not until the year 2000 that the International Community became aware about the suffering of the people of South Sudan and the need to help them solve their problems. After much effort and pain, the heads of the warring factions were brought to the tables of Machakos and Naivasha - which culminated in to the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) that was signed on January 2005. As peace has been attained, we called upon those who left Aweil to return home so that we join hands and work towards the betterment of the lives of our people. Freedom of movement to Aweil is of paramount importance and the state government will guarantee it to all regardless of county, religious belief or political affiliation.
My dear fellow Statesmen,
The central point in the CPA is the right of the people of South Sudan to self-determination. This is a noble objective that shall be realized in the Referendum in which there are two choices - either to secede or remain as one country.
AweilState has remained far behind in term of development. It is indeed our duty, commitment and a burning desire to raise Aweil from the ashes of destruction to a sound and realistic economic level. This is possible through such activities as education and improving the health standard of all. Our economic potential is very promising and will be used for the benefit of both the government of South Sudan and the government of AweilState. As the economic level improves, investment will come to our State and jobs will be created. This can succeed only and only if we join hands and bring our minds together.
For the acceleration of our development, education will be given the top priority. Our schools have been destroyed by war. All the former leading schools shall be rebuilt and new ones built. We shall strive to eliminate illiteracy. Adult education shall be encouraged along with the education of our girls. Gender equality shall prevail in our State. As stated in the constitution, the use of English language shall be official and it must therefore be encourage without prejudice to local languages. This goes hand in hand with the preservation of our cultural identity. There is a profound lack of teachers at all levels of education - and this is something that State authority will give an urgent attention and consideration.
Our government of AweilState shall also address itself to the problems of health and sanitation. Each and every part of our community shall be provided with the hospitals and clinics. Nurses are to be trained and new ones employed. Doctors and other qualified personnel will be taken from the government of South Sudan and other States - if required. Lack of competent manpower in our hospitals poses a serious threat with the result that today - most of our hospitals are very short of staff.
Sanitation is another problem that has to be faced. It would be important for the health of our population that our hospitals, schools, homes and the general environment be kept clean. It will be better to prevent a looming disaster than to later face the additional problems of disease and death caused by poor sanitation. An important part of our clean environment is the provision of safe and accessible drinking water for all our population by drilling wells and boreholes all over the state, wherever they are required.
Self help projects will be initiated and encouraged especially in the field of agriculture, building community centers and schools and the formation of cooperative shops. It will be necessary for us to produce more food so as to avert hunger as well as dependency on others.
We shall endeavor and encourage our culture since we are the community with sound tradition, culture, beliefs and values. These are intrinsic societal norms that can never be separated from us. Our community institution shall always remain enforced as do our traditional marriage system. Folklore dances shall be allowed and encouraged all over the state.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Court system is to be properly established by the judicial authority. The rule of law must prevail. It is time to fix our broken judicial system. Our government will strive to do so. This time, our administration shall see to it that right people are put in the right place for the smooth running of cases.
Communication is very important. We hardly know what is happening around us in the State due to lack of transport and communication. But before we get vehicles, an efficient and paved road system must be re-established. This will be a serious priority in our State.
As security was already mentioned as one of the important element of good governance and peaceful co-existence, there shall be established law enforcement agencies for the effective security work. Police force is the arm of any government and AweilState is no exception. Our police forces shall be drawn all over the State and given a discipline and thorough training as they must uphold human rights and person liberty as stated by the constitution. It is a patriotic duty of all citizens to work hand in hand with their brothers in the police force for a safe and just State. Other paramilitary organs along with the police shall play an important role in our security work. The prison force shall be strengthened to carry out their duties in a legitimate manner. The Wildlife Unit shall also be given strong support on which to operate in order to safeguard against the destruction of our wildlife in the state. Above all, security shall be accorded to everyone regardless of race, gender, religion, ethnic, clan or county background. We will strive to have a just society operating under the rule of law – one law for all - regardless of rank, gender, belief or political party.
My country men,
NGOs and Community Based Organisations (CBOs) have been working tirelessly to help our people to reach a dignified way of living. Their role is well appreciated and we encourage more work to come from them. As we are entering the phase of rehabilitating our refugees and IDPs, NGOs and CBOs must play important role to provide food and other essential needs to the people.
finally, lack of manpower in our state is posing a major problem. We have very few government officials that will not cover the whole of the state. In this case, we will endeavor to train and recruit enough manpower to fill the nagging gap. Training is important for efficient and supportive government work. We called for punctuality and seriousness in our assignments and nobody will be allowed to fend off his today’s duty for tomorrow unless there are strong reasons to do so. Accountability and transparency should and must be observed. Our government is determined to lay down foundation for good governance in AweilState. Our community must remain united, peaceful and prosperous. Equality, freedom of press/speech, justice, respect for human rights and personal liberty as well as the rule of law shall be the guiding principles in our state. Above all lets be serious in whatever we do and live to accept corrections and constructive critiques. Let’s bring our State to its former glory and together we can do great. It is better late than never.
Governor, Northern Bahr el GazalState.