February 5, 2017 (JUBA) – The Japanese government has approved the $22.4 million budget it had earmarked for South Sudan’s humanitarian and reconstruction assistance through its partnership with international organizations.
South Sudan witnessed renewed violence in July 2016 when its rival forces clashed in the capital, Juba, killing hundreds of people and displacing thousands.
The incident pegged back the country’s nation-building process, less than five years after it gained its independence from Sudan following a referendum.
The humanitarian needs in South Sudan are immense and ever accumulating.
“For our relief efforts to successfully reach those in need, we look to the South Sudanese government’s utmost effort to ensure humanitarian access and improve security situations,” the Japanese government said in a statement.
It further added, “Our assistance also goes to essential ceasefire monitors”.
The donation, according to the Japanese envoy to South Sudan, will cater for reconstruction, development and restoration of social fabric, with a view to supporting the nation’s efforts to keep the straight and narrow path to peace.
“I wholeheartedly wish that the array of our humanitarian and resilience-building assistance bears fruit and once and for all shines as a Guiding Star for those who endeavour to realize peace and reconciliation in each of their communities,” said Kiya Masahiko.
Under the 2017-2018 projects, the donation will support operations of aid agencies such as the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), U.N Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA), World Food Programme (WFP), U.N Refugee Agency (UNHCR), U.N Population Fund (UNFPA), the U.N Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and U.N Development Program (UNDP) and World Health Organisation (WHO), among others.
Japan reportedly provided $13 million assistance to South Sudanese refugees in Uganda, Ethiopia, and Kenya. Japan’s aggregate assistance to South Sudan since the December 2013 crisis reportedly reached $189million.