By Gladys Fred Kole
Canadian government on Tuesday, July 4, 2023, designated a new head of mission to its embassy in the Republic of South Sudan.
In a statement, seen by this outlet, Canada’s foreign ministry said Minister, Mélanie Joly has appointed Aly-Khan Rajani as its new ambassador to South Sudan.
He is succeeding Ambassador Jenny Hill who was appointed in 2020.
In reaction to his appointment, Rajani stated that he was honored to serve in the country.
“I look forward to working together on the many common priorities of the two countries.” Rajani
His designation comes at a time South Sudan is dealing with several challenges that include, economic meltdown, influx of refugees from Sudan and election, due next year.
Rajani will be expected to provide support to South Sudan unity government on the country’s transition process.
The new Canadian top diplomat to Juba is expected to assume his role soon.
Canada supports humanitarian assistance, peace and security as well as development programme in South Sudan.
Meanwhile, Canada has in the past played a key role as contributor of international assistance to South Sudan, providing over $900 million since its independence in 2011.
Canada’s development assistance to South Sudan focuses on improving access to quality health services, with emphasis on sexual and reproductive health and rights.
Other areas of Canadian government’s focus include reducing food insecurity, access to quality education and supporting inclusive governance, especially for vulnerable populations, such as women and girls.
Canada’s humanitarian assistance helps to provide emergency food and nutrition, water and sanitation, healthcare, protection services and shelter for vulnerable conflict-affected populations.
Canada’s total international assistance, including support for peace and security, to South Sudan in 2020-21 amounted to $129.2 million.