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KUAJOK - 25 Sep 2023

UNMISS urges citizens' engagement for peaceful elections in Warrap State

As the world commemorated the International Day of Peace, also known as World Peace Day, last week, the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) Field Office in Warrap State called upon the government to quell inter-communal violence to pave the way for citizens to participate in the forthcoming December 2024 general elections.

Addressing a gathering at Kuajok Freedom Square, Anantasie Nyiregera, UNMISS Head of Field Office, emphasized the significance of this year’s theme, “Actions for Peace: Our Ambition for the #GlobalGoals,” saying it is a call to action that recognizes individual and collective responsibility to foster peace.

“Today we are celebrating the International Day of Peace and I appreciate the humanitarian organizations for delivering essential services needed by the people of Warrap. I also acknowledge the contributions of the Warrap State community towards achieving peace in some counties,” she said. “While Warrap still contends with challenges like cattle rustling, cross-border attacks, and internal violence, we must unite to forge a resilient community and eradicate violence. UNMISS is your partner for peace, and we will collaborate with the government to ensure that women are empowered in the political, social, and economic sectors.”

“We celebrate the Peace Day because we want to discuss the upcoming elections, where every citizen should have the freedom to participate and choose their leaders in the 2024 polls and this means that people will have the opportunity to decide who will lead them,” Nyiregera added.

She reassured the audience that UNMISS remains committed to safeguarding civilians and strengthening institutions in the field of the rule of law. She appealed to the Warrap state government to create political space for political parties to operate, while also urging the state government to uphold freedom of expression for civil society groups to inform the people about peace and development.

For his part, Warrap State Governor Manhiem Bol Malek thanked UNMISS for its peacekeeping efforts and praised the communities of Warrap State for maintaining stability in the counties.

“I congratulate the people of Warrap State for contributing to the stability of our counties. The peace we enjoy today is not solely the government’s achievement. It is the collective effort of all of us who have embraced the necessity of stability and safety in our state,” he said. “With the peace we have in the state, you can witness the progress of the Warrap State Legislative Assembly, the infrastructure in Kuajok town, and various development projects, including the airport. Therefore, do not allow yourselves to be led astray by individuals inciting senseless conflicts.”

“It is time to commit to building better homes and thinking about our well-being instead of fighting among ourselves,” the governor added.