The Governor of Yei River State has expressed readiness to hold an open dialogue with members of the main armed opposition group, the Sudan people’s liberation Army (SPLA) operating in the various bushes of Yei River State in an effort to restore total peace and stability in the region.
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Yei River peace accord still holding, serving as model for famine-plagued country.
Dallas, TX, Sept. 21, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- S. Sudan Vice President Taban Deng Gai meets today with Bishop Elias Taban, leader of Yei’s Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC) and recipient of the 2013 Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Citizen Award, and Steve Roese, co-founder of Texas-based Water is Basic and SouthSudanNow.com, to implement the NGO’s grassroots peace model throughout South Sudan. The meeting, taking place on the International Day of Peace, follows a successful peace accord Taban brokered for Yei River State, with support from U.S.-based His Voice Global.
On June 4, 2017, a signed peace accord officially ended the armed conflict in Yei River State between warring factions – the South Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) and the SPLA - In Opposition (SPLA-IO) Yei River State. The accord calls for a permanent ceasefire; an assembly area for armed rebels and their security; a planned national dialogue and the securing and opening of all roads to and out of Yei Town.
“Together, we demonstrated our collaborative, grassroots peace approach is successful,” says Roese. “For over a decade, we have served South Sudan in bringing clean drinking water to more than 1.5 million Sudanese, which has brought a glimmer of peace. Now, our efforts can serve as a catalyst for peace across its entire nation.”
President Salva Kiir, who is scheduled to meet with Taban and Roese tomorrow, has requested the grassroots peace model be taken to all 32 states in South Sudan, beginning in Torit and Boma.
Taban has gained significant influence with all parties involved and is generally accepted as a neutral party. He shares the first priority is the successful staging and reintegration of former opposition (SPLA-IO) forces into the local community and SPLA government forces. EPC and its partners are responsible for overall monitoring of the implementation of the Yei River peace agreement and the successful implementation and management of Pre-Assembly Areas and the Morobo Assembly points in Yei River State. This includes registration and screening; supply provisioning and inspection; vocational screening; training and logistical support.
“Survival trumps war,” adds Roese. He says the most urgent needs are supporting the Kendila Assembly points with basic provisions including household, food and medical supplies; preparing for opposition reintegration efforts and provisioning for future Assembly points in Torit and Boma; and funding for peace talks in the other states.
SouthSudanNow is a coalition of His Voice Global, B.A.S.I.C. Ministries, Water is Basic and Impact | AO Foundation, whose supporters are dedicated to grassroots peace initiatives in South Sudan. SouthSudanNow.com
About Water is Basic:
Water is Basic aims to put clean, safe water within reasonable access for every person in South Sudan. Co-founded in 2006, and led by Bishop Elias Taban and Steve Roese, in response to the country’s water crises, Water is Basic has been there from the beginning. Birthed at the grassroots level, the organization is guided by local experience and implemented by men and women who get what it means to go thirsty.
About Impact | AO Foundation:
An impact investment and innovation group collaborating with philanthropists and local impact organizations to create bold change for vital lives, communities and planet. Impact AO first partnered with EPC two years ago.
July Food Deliveries in Yei River State of South Sudan
Current Food Program:
The food program evolves with time as the lowest price purchase strategies are sought out. Also, the actual food distribution changes with time depending on the local circumstances. For July, Bishop contracted all food purchases through Indian traders in Juba. The food is brought from Uganda through Juba and to Yei. The food is trucked to Yei by the traders(not Bishop) and taken to a distribution warehouse in Yei. The convoy from Juba receives a light military escort. Bishop picks up the food from the Yei distribution warehouse. Tax payments and customs inspections are done at the Yei warehouse. The food is picked up by Bishop’s trucks and taken to the CWEP warehouse (on the EPC compound). From the CWEP warehouse, it is taken slowly out to the people of Yei. Our goal is to give 10 kg of food to each person or give 50 kg to each family per month. However, in practice people known well to EPC receive 10 kg per person, but others not known to EPC may get a smaller ration.
Other NGO Food Deliveries:
Caritas completed their second delivery of the year. The total number of trucks from Caritas from both deliveries was six or maybe 700 bags of food delivered to Yei in 2017. The UN completed a larger delivery on July 19. This was the first UN World Food Program distribution in Yei this year. They distributed 8 kg of sorghum per person to an unknown number of people. When the UN trucks arrived, there was a surge of people and two people were trampled to death. Our food is delivered in small quantities and military Chaplain Major Machar and some soldiers are present for many of the deliveries to control the crowds.
Corn Flour Delivered to Yei on July 18
-Wire Date: July 13
-Beginning Date of Food Deliveries to People: July 18
-Amount of Wire: $40,000
-Price: $30 per 50kg bag
-Number of 50 kg bags: 1,330
Corn Flour Delivered to Yei on July 26
-Bibles Distributed: 100 with 64 in Bari and 26 in Arabic
-Wire Date: July 21
-Food Deliveries to People: July 26-August 8
-Amount of Wire: $31,500
-Price: $30 per 50kg bag(some bags were $25 kg at $15 per bag)
-Number of 50kg bags: 1,050 (two 25 kg bags are counted as one 50 kg bag)
Almost 100% of the food purchased in July went to the Yei civil population.
Total Amount Wired: $71,500
Total Bags of Corn Delivered: 2,380 50 kg bags
At 8 kg per person per month, we fed 14,875 people per day for 1 month.
Yei River Governor has said the peace deal his government recently signed with armed groups in the state is still holding despite the renewed fighting.