National, News

Norway calls for reforms ahead of elections

By No. 1 Citizen Daily Newspaper


Norwegian Ambassador to South Sudan, Linken Nymann Berryman, has issued a strong call for the Transitional Government of South Sudan to take immediate steps to prepare for free and fair elections.

In remarks delivered at a ceremony celebrating Norway’s National Constitution Day, Ambassador Berryman emphasized the urgency of opening political and civic space, unification of security forces, and ensuring that the election institutions are independent.

“We therefore continue to call on the Transitional Government of South Sudan to act with urgency, and in a consultative and inclusive manner, to take the steps necessary to hold peaceful and genuine elections. There is real urgency of opening political and civic space, unification of security forces and ensuring that the election related institutions are independent and up and running,” she said.

Norway has been a longstanding partner of South Sudan, supporting the country’s struggle for freedom and sovereignty.

Ambassador Berryman further noted that Norway believes “transparency and accountability in public financial management is a cornerstone for a nation’s economic development and a trusted government.”

She urged the Transitional Government to demonstrate real political will and commitment to implementing necessary public financial management reforms.

“This creates a solid platform for lasting peace and opportunities for all citizens to prosper. We, therefore, support the work for Public Financial Management Reform in South Sudan and keep calling on the Transitional government for real political will and commitment to implement necessary PFM reforms,” Linken stated.

The ambassador also in her remarks expressed Norway’s deep concern over the humanitarian crisis affecting millions in South Sudan, calling on the government to remove bureaucratic barriers hampering the work of aid organizations.

“The newly introduced fees of various kinds have posed real and serious obstacles. These obstacles need to be cleared once and for all.”

Speaking during the event, Dr. Jacob Maiju Korok, the Deputy Minister of Information, affirmed the strong bilateral relations between Norway and South Sudan, dating back to the Sudanese Civil War and the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in 2005.

He expressed gratitude for Norway’s political, financial, and humanitarian support, and called for continued assistance, particularly in supporting refugees along the borders.

“We urge the government of Norway to continue assisting the people of South Sudan, we impartially request your full support on refugees along the borders between our two sisterly countries fleeing the conflict in Sudan,” he said.

He expressed hope for strengthening political, economic, and socio-cultural ties between the two countries in the days ahead.

The Deputy Minister expressed that for lasting peace to be realized, it is important all the holdout groups to join the Nairobi Peace Talks to ensure that everyone is represented when the country holds elections.

“The people of South Sudan have suffered enough and it is about time to silence the guns and embark on agriculture and development projects.”

On Friday Norway the National Constitution Day-the day when the Norwegian Constitution was signed in 1814.

The signing of her Constitution represented a turning point in the country’s journey to self-governance and becoming a sovereign nation. After several more decades of struggle, Norway became independent in 1905. This was after almost 90 years in union with Sweden, preceded by 400 years under Danish rule.


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