September 02, 2012 (JUBA) - The South Sudan Council of Ministers on Sunday came under attack from youth leaders, who accused members of the country’s cabinet of discussing personalities, while “ignoring” the real problems of young people.
Miss World contestent, South Sudan’s Atong Demach, poses for a photo as she waits backstage prior to a rehearsal for the final ceremony at the Ordos Stadium Arena in the inner Mongolian city of Ordos on August 17, 2012. (Getty)
Addressing journalists shortly after their Friday meeting, Information minister, Benjamin Marial, said the council, during its regular sitting, mainly discussed the recent achievements by prominent South Sudanese.
Guor Marial, a South Sudanese marathon runner competed in the London 2012 Games last month. He was not able to compete in South Sudanese colours as the young nation does not yet have an Olympic Committee but his story as refugee who sought asylum in the United States and was running under the Olympic flag captured the imagination of the Games.
Guor Marial outside the Olympic Village in London the day after running in the London 2012 marathon. 13 August 2012 (Tom Law/ST)
Also in August, Atong Demach, came fourth at this year’s Miss World contest in China, picking up the award for “African Continental Queen of Beauty".
Marial said that the Council applauded the duo for having put the young nation on the world map hardly two months after it marked its first independence anniversary. Members of the cabinet, the minister added, resolved to reward Atong in recognition of her outstanding achievement.
But in an interview with Sudan Tribune on Sunday, Angelo Ding Dhel, a member of South Sudan Forum for Peace and Development (SSFPD), expressed dismay at what he said was cabinet’s diversion from the real issues affecting the young people by debating individual success.
“There are very many youth, ranging from artists, journalists, activists and people in other professions who made immense contribution to this country. Why are they not being recognized by the Council of Ministers?” Dhel asked.
According to Dhel, South Sudanese youth, who account for more than 70% of the population, currently face enormous challenges, including unemployment, illiteracy, crime, and poverty.
“We expected the cabinet to deliberate on the real problems facing today’s youth, many of whom are idle and could end up engaging in violence-related activities,” said the SSFPD Secretary for Mobilization.
Samuel Okomi, the Director of South Sudan Youth Participation Agency (SSYPA) said he was equally disappointed with the agenda that dominated Friday’s ministerial meeting in Juba, the South Sudan capital.
“I think we our ministers missed the point. What was the essence of discussing two personalities, yet there are very many youth who contributed to the struggle that brought us where we are today? Our youth expect more than this,” said Okomi.
NATIONAL YOUTH SERVICE
Last month, Cirino Hiteng, South Sudan’s youth and sports minister unveiled a plan to initiate a national youth service as a remedy to the rampant youth unemployment.
South Sudan’s Youth and Sports Minister, Cirino Hiteng (ST)
The much-hyped plan will reportedly target at least 10,000 youth drawn from all over the 10 states of South Sudan.
The national youth initiative, Hiteng emphasized, is a one-year compulsory program that will be done in partnership with the defence ministry to teach young people nation-building skills.
However, Both Dhel and Okomi, who also represent the youth on the United Nations advisory board for South Sudan, openly criticized the planned national youth service, which they said will not resolve the current problems affecting young people.
The two youth activists instead agitated for the creation of a South Sudan National Youth Federation (SSNYF), as an umbrella entity that brings together various youth from all over the country to deliberate on issues affecting them.
Comments on the Sudan Tribune website must abide by the following rules. Contravention of these rules will lead to the user losing their Sudan Tribune account with immediate effect.
- No inciting violence
- No inappropriate or offensive language
- No racism, tribalism or sectarianism
- No inappropriate or derogatory remarks
- No deviation from the topic of the article
- No advertising, spamming or links
- No incomprehensible comments
Due to the unprecedented amount of racist and offensive language on the site, Sudan Tribune tries to vet all comments on the site.
There is now also a limit of 400 words per comment. If you want to express yourself in more detail than this allows, please e-mail your comment as an article to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Sudan Tribune editorial team.
3 September 2012 06:53, by George Bol
reward can not be done to everybody so, i disagree with those youth because they did not address the youth problem rather than complaining about the reward of the two. Here are problem facing the youth in the South: Unemployment of Masters, Bachelors, Associates degree in their very country.Second, overlooking because of age-though you are 1005 sure to deliver source such as teaching in University
@ Samuel Malual, I bet you are out mind. On top of that, you are a true tribalistic man. You got it very wrong. Mr. Gour Miarial is hail from Panaruu community of Unity State and. These most humble and honoured people had never sold any quarter of their motherland. However you need to see an elderly person for clarification. Otherwise, shame on you.
George Bol.Maa ci ruay e la raan en wale!Youths are reserved for military activities and still have no voices there.We are dying with our skills and knowledges in the hands of primitive elders and fathers who refuse us,but they say u defend our land from the enemies.We do it!We need to work with you fathers so that we learn from you even!
Cont- the minister of education will says that you are too young. Something that can never be said but age discrimination.The government only open the military section as for youth job but there many things. Youth should be involve in any decision making and there opinion must be examine.Please! employed youth especially those with skills to spread developments in our country.
Hard to understand the money figures because he has calculated it in pound instead of Dollars. Doing it in dollars will help understand it clearly and better. However, the guys have done an awesome job. Thanks you so much.
all government officials were involved in looting spree...it was as if they were competing with one another as to who will get away with most of the cake! The whole thing is pathetic. Don’t understand as to how they allowed themselves to be audited in the first place when all ended with embarrassment.
What good do we expect from this incompetence government? A government fully dominated by all incompetent individuals who don’t have a clean background all together. Most of our leaders came from a remote background and they are still thinking remotely. Instead, the current leadership in Juba is a community of Mafias should not a Council of Ministers.
I think the two young people (Guor & Atong) deserve SS Cabinet’s acknowledgment and any criticism of it does only implied jealousy. We must learn to support and appreciate big or little successes as they are achieved by groups or individuals efforts. Advocating for SS Cabinet to focus on the issues affecting the Youth is a separate issue that should not be connected to Guor’s and Atong...
Cnts. should not be connected to SS Cabinet acknowledgment.
Just a separate issue; I am terribly shocked to hear that Dr Francis Mading Deng is appointed as SS representative to UN & UNSC. If it is true, then South Sudanese people might have to deal with a problem similar to that caused by Lam Akol. This man has been at UN for decades and has done little to the suffering of Marginalised Sudanes
The Cabinet should invole the problem of this Pagan AMun is holding our position while supporting the decission of SPLM-DC to create conflict in the state as the anticipation is recognising his Lam Akol by consolidate his milita in UNS. Pagan Amum, ur 100% wrong . we are waiting for if anything happen in Malakal u will be answerable.
GUT MARIAL DOES NOT QUALIFY TO BE HONOURED,IF NUMBER 47 IS GOOD TO YOU,THEN SO BE IT.IN MY COUNTRY OF BOR WE DON,T RECOQNIZE SUCH LOSING NUMBERS.ATONG IS OKAY BECAUSE BEAUTIY IS NATURAL AND TO THE EYE OF THE BEHOLDER.
My youth friends, does our leaders know what is criticism? What do we mean by opposition? Opposition shape the country and it is a group in waiting to govern. Critic- mean accountability which steer the direction of government.
Samuel Malual, how do you described yourselves if you don’t know the immediate Dinkas sub-communities and yet you are a Dinka as indicated by your second name? Anyway I feel very sympathetic about you Bro. and I can’t blame you though. I am a Dinka and do proud myself because my parents tought me more about the greater Dinka families. If you had any ill feeling Ngok then trace their whereabouts.
NATIONAL GOVERNMENT NEED TO UNDERSTAND ITS ROLE AND MANDATE,MINISTERIAL DISCUSSION JUST ABOUT THE DUO WHO ARE MAYBE STRUGGLING TO SUSTAIN THEMSELVES SHOWS HOW MUCH INCOMPETENCE THE SO-CALLED CABINET IS.MORE THAN HUNDRED GOVERNMENT TROOPS HAVE BEEN KILLED BY COLLABORATION OF MILITIA-COMMUNITY AND THE CABINET IS TALKING ABOUT USELESS THINGS.LEARN HOW SUCH THINGS ARE DONE IN OTHERS COUNTRIES.
Nothing good is discussed in South Sudan Council of Ministers apart from encouraging themselves to increase their salaries and allowances. These guys are not there to represents interest of people, they are just there for their selfish gain. Shame on them. Youth should unite and bring these group down
the problems of youth in south sudan are known to every body:poverty, unemployment and lack of services..spla members running the country are the cause of these problems ,some of them stole the money that is supposed to go to the development and poverty eradication progammes..in short,the 75 thieve are the enemies of south sudan,they should bring back the money if things are to go right
@ "Samuel Malual, I bet you are out mind. On top of that, you are a true tribalistic man. You got it very wrong. Mr. Gour Miarial is hail from Panaruu community of Unity State" Runrach, you are a blind who can’t see things beyond your own roofs. Where did ever mentioned anything related to Gour Marial? Please see Doctor as soon as you can. Idiot.
Open letter to UN secretary-general2015-09-01 09:11:28
To Secretary General Ban Ki-moon
Secretary-General of the United Nations
Dear Mr. Ban,
Tuesday, 1st September 2015
To the military parade in Beijing on September 3rd you have been invited as (...)
The perilous change in Darfur’s demography2015-08-28 08:10:36
By Eric Reeves
The debate about whether or not Darfur was the site of genocide long ago flamed out, largely because the issue became excessively politicized and the world—in general—no longer (...)