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S. Sudan Bishop wins Roosevelt freedom award for peace


February 7, 2018 (Middelburg) – A South Sudanese Bishop has won an award in recognition for the peace village he founded as the visible embodiment of his peacemaking efforts in the young nation.

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Bishop Emeritus Paride Taban (worldcath2013)

Emeritus Bishop Paride Taban will, in May, receive the Freedom of Worship Award, one of the Four Freedoms Awards presented annually by the Roosevelt Foundation in Middelburg, Netherlands.

The Netherlands-based peace building entity, Pax, in a 6 February statement, described Taban, a retired Bishop of Torit, as "a rare figure in a fractured country, someone who has excellent contact with leaders on all sides and is not afraid to call them to account,"

In 2005, the 82-year-old bishop set up the Kuron peace village in Eastern Equatoria state as an avenue to unite people for peace.

The Roosevelt Foundation, in a 6 February statement, said Taban has, since the 1960s, “worked as a peacemaker, drawing on seemingly bottomless reserves of patience, optimism and strategic insight”.

The award, it said, recognizes Taban "for his lifelong and selfless dedication to the cause of bringing freedom and peace to the people of South Sudan."

The retired Bishop’s "great wisdom and deep respect for different religions and cultures has enabled him to forge emotional bonds between otherwise battling groups," it stressed.

The retired Bishop, according to the foundation, continues to call for an end to the human suffering and for a peaceful solution of the conflict in South Sudan in local, national and international forums,".

"Through his life’s work he is keeping the flame of hope for peace alive, not only by preaching the word of God but by living it,” it added.

The conflict in South Sudan has killed tens of thousands and displaced over 2 million into neighbouring countries since it broke out in December 2013. Also, about 2 million are internally displaced.

"Much of the population has fled due to the fighting, agricultural land remains fallow, hunger and lawlessness prevail and scarce resources are manipulated," the PAX statement further noted.

Kuron peace village was founded to unite the population in the area and set an example of peaceful cohabitation in South Sudan. Situated in Eastern Equatoria state, on the southeast border of South Sudan, the facility brings together different ethnic groups who live and work together.

In 2013, Taban won the prestigious 2013 Sergio Vieira de Mello Prize in recognition for his efforts in promoting peace in communities within the war-torn East African country.


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  • 8 February 14:50, by frank

    congratulations abona you really deserve the award ur a mentor for millions of people in the country including me. i wish the fruits of your hard fought peace comes true this time around

    repondre message

  • 8 February 17:21, by Angelo Achuil

    "Blessed are the peacemakers, fill they will be called Children of God" (Mt 5:9) whom he will come and claim sooner or latter. May God bless him and reveal himself more to him so that through him many may bring glory to his name.

    repondre message

  • 8 February 20:01, by Fair Man

    He diverted all donations meant for the Diocese of Torit. Why the Diocese of Torit remains one of the poorest dioceses in the Country? Does Kuron Peace Village a personal property and attribute to Bishop Paride Taban or an attribute to the Catholic Diocese of Torit, through he must get clearance to get funding. Torit has no Bishop so that Paride’s work goes unnoticed!!

    repondre message

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