By Tereza Jeremiah Chuei
The Vice President for Gender and Youth Cluster said the resumption of Jonglei canal and dredging of Naam River is not a priority saying citizens’ attention should not be driven away from the major focus now which is the implementation of the peace agreement that’s about to elapse.
She weighed in that the resumption of the Jonglei Canal and the dredging of River Naam is not the priority at all but rather the Country should be discussing about oil Pollution that is affecting the people.
VP Nyandeng stated that people have been staying with the floods all along arguing that it’s not something new, adding “water is our friend”
Nyandeng also said the environmental, water experts should be given time to conduct the feasibility study, while the public should be enlighten and educated on the effect and the importance of dredging and the resumption of Jonglei Canal.
Speaking to reporters at Juba International Airport yesterday, Vice President Nyandeng said the leadership has to be educated and also to discuss it.
“So let’s give ourselves time, we are not in hurry, water is our friend, we need to see how we can managed the water and support our people so that they can leave with water,” said Nyandeng.
She noted that it’s the responsibility of the leadership or the government to have long vision when it comes to taking decision about the Country’s assets and how they should be used.
“You know your people can have short vision, but the leadership should have along vision to see what will benefit the people of South Sudan in the long run and what will affect them in the long run this are the things that need to be debated, what will be short team, what will be middle team and what will benefits the people in the long team,” she emphasized.
The Vice President for Gender and Youth Cluster said implementation of the Revitalized Agreement is the current priority that South Sudanese should focus on.
“The public debate is very imported its healthy if it’s allowed to take its cause, South Sudan is still in this confusion and we are implementing the Agreement we don’t want to start other things, so the issue of resumption of Jonglei Cabal is not the priority for South Sudan now, we have our priorities,” Nyandeng advised.
She added that people of Unity and Upper Nile States have been staying in water all along so the most important thing to look at the movement is addressing the oil pollution that is affecting them.
“And if we say that our people are sitting in the water, they have been sitting in water for the last two years, and they are surviving, for me what is very dangerous, like for the people in Unity State, people of Upper Nile is the issue of the oil pollution, the pollution is the real problem there, that we as the leadership should be discussing, not the issue of dredging,” she lamented.
“The issue of dredging will come after because now the government and the President has heard the voices of the people of South Sudan, that is why we put a break that is why we listen to what the people are saying,” she added.
Nyandeng stressed that they shouldn’t open other avenue or divert the attention of the people on the peace implementation.
“Now we are reaching the end of the transition, we don’t want to confused it when the end of the transition is almost going there and then we bring another issue and then divert the attention of South Sudanese, we don’t want to lost a live for such things,” she submitted.
“Let us listen to the people and give debate a chance, let us also give expert a chance so that they can educate us, so that when we as the leadership take a decision it will be an informed decision that the people of South Sudan will appreciate in the future,” she said.
Nyandeng said there are people who are depending on that Sudd wetlands, and they need to know from the experts, if the Nile is dredge, and the Canal is dung, are they still going to preserve their wetland, this is an issue that they need to know, saying they are not against the water flowing, as it has been flowing since.
“These things have to be discussed by the leadership, we also have our parliament and parliament is representing our people of South Sudan and I am not even sure of where it came from (dredging),” She exclaimed.
“That there is dredging which is going on until the machine were seen in Unity State, so this is what I have seen myself, it has never been debated, and people are saying it was debated but I don’t know and I need to be educated myself but am for the people of South Sudan,” Nyandeng stressed.
She noted that she want to give her support to those who said that the feasibility study must take place first, before any dredging activities could be Okayed.