National, News

Uphold citizen’s dreams, US tells leaders

By Charles K Mark


The United States of America has urged South Sudan  leaders to uphold the dreams and aspirations of the people that led to the 2011 independence.

Despite the challenges faced by the Country, the US envoy to South Sudan Ambassador Michael J. Adler said they remain hopeful that the leaders can still work for the country.

“I know that after more than twelve years of transition, following independence and the painful years of civil war, the people of this country still have the dream, the dream that they had when they voted for independence in 2011,” he recalled.

Speaking at the late Dr. Martin Luther King Day, (civil rights activist), Mr. Adler emphasized the importance of inclusive governance, human rights, and economic development.

He said that the dreams of the South Sudanese who fought tirelessly for independence should not be abandoned.

The ambassador encourages South Sudanese to reflect on 2024 as a year of rapid and peaceful progress towards achieving their dream.

“Our shared dream for this country, for it is more than a dream. It is what the South Sudanese people deserve, as do all people around the world,” he said.

He attributed the country’s efforts to achieving its dream to Dr. Martin Luther King’s short life, in which he powerfully affirmed a commitment to peace, justice, and to building a better future for all.

“Dr. King’s universal vision transcended creed, religion, nationality, race, gender and ethnicity. Indeed, it transcended any of the things wrongly dividing us or that cynical people manipulate sometimes to divide us to serve their selfish interests,” Adler said.

The American head of mission stated that South Sudan should learn from Martin Luther’s belief that civilization and violence are antithetical concepts.

He urged that there is no better path to sustainable peace and well-being for South Sudan than through free, fair, and peaceful elections in December of this year.

“Now is the time for them (leaders) to act with urgency, to take the steps necessary to create an environment conducive to peaceful elections. These include politically neutral security forces,” the envoy stressed.

Adler challenged the leaders to start using public revenue for the provision of public needs

“Pay public sector salaries on time, including those for security forces, health workers, and teachers to fund and operationalize electoral institutions,” He added.

For his part, Joseph Oliver Wani, an alumni of the Mandela Washington Fellowship said there’s a lot the country can learn from Luther King to change South Sudan.

“We can copy something and develop it in our way, the way we want to make it. And I believe by maybe 2060, we’ll have a different South Sudan, with a different perspective,” he said.

Wani is optimistic that positive and social change begins with changing perceptions of the citizenry itself.

“It begins with the citizens. Do they want the same or do they want something different? If we start by having someone who has a dream, and then we’ll have that change coming!” He pondered.

The speakers made their address during the Martin Luther King Day marked in Juba on Friday.

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