Home | News    Saturday 24 October 2009

South Africa to technically support South Sudan towards elections and referendum

By James Gatdet Dak

October 23, 2009 (JUBA) — The Republic of South Africa has pledged to carry out trainings in multiple institutions and technically support Southern Sudan in preparation for the upcoming elections and referendum.

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It also pledged to play the role of ambassador by encouraging domestic and international investors to invest in the semi-autonomous region.

This was discussed in the bilateral talks held in Juba on Friday between the delegation of the Republic of South Africa headed by the Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe and Southern Sudan’s team headed by the Vice President, Dr. Riek Machar.

South Africa expressed willingness to lead the way in the investment by exploring the possibility of establishing joint ventures with the indigenous investors in Southern Sudan.

It will also train the police and other law enforcement agencies on how to keep law and order during the elections and referendum.

The country has been supporting capacity building programs by taking and training Southern Sudanese officials for all these years since 2005 during which more than 3,000 civil servants had completed their training.

In the Friday’s meeting, however, it was agreed that South African trainers will instead be relocated to Southern Sudan and conduct the training in the country.

The delegation also expressed willingness to technically assist Southern Sudan in the civil aviation through its national airline.

Several presentations highlighting different investment opportunities in the region were made by a number of ministers comprising governance and economic sectors.

Among the other issues discussed included the need to support financial institutions, oil, agriculture and livestock sectors as well as to empower women.

The visiting South African Vice - President, Kgalema Motlanthent, discussed in Khartoum with the Sudanese President Omer Al-Bashir means to develop bilateral ties. He met also with Vice - President, Ali Osman Mohamed Taha, and Chairman of the General Elections Commission, Abel Alier.