30th May 2024
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Businesses flourish with increasing customers along Juba-Yirol highway

Authors: Chany Ninrew | | Published: Monday, April 15, 2024

Some of the Passenger Vehicles spotted on the Juba-Yirol Road (Photo by Mandela Nelson)

Local traders and fishermen along the Juba-Bahr El Ghazal highway express astonishment at the rapidity with which they are reaping the benefits of improved road connectivity, as it catalyzes the growth of their businesses.

In December 2022, President Salva Kiir inaugurated the completed 100-kilometer section of the highway, which runs from Juba to Terekeka.

The president also inaugurated the second phase of the road from Terekeka to Yirol in Lakes State in October 2023, and the ARC Resource Corporation is currently undertaking the construction.

Along the highway from Juba to Terekeka and Yirol, businessmen have reported increasing customers and thriving markets – thanks to travellers between the states and the capital.

Trucks loaded with commodities traverse the highway to and from Yirol daily – with stops at Mingkaman and elsewhere as travellers grab some fresh fish and refreshments.

Ayuen Akol, a middle-aged restaurant owner in downtown Mingkaman, revealed that her business is improving every day as a result of a busy road, where many people are visiting the town.

Speaking in her native language, she said that she can sell over 30kgs of fresh fish daily – enabling her to support her family and improve her living standard.

“The Juba-Yirol has made Mingkaman more accessible, so many travellers always pass and stop here to eat fresh and take some refreshment,” she said.

“I want to thank the government and ARC for this great job, Mingkaman is a city now”.

Joseph Gore, who operates a Probox vehicle said he has even been driving at night without experiencing any safety issues. Mr Gore applauded the government for crucial infrastructure.

“There is no night and day on the Juba-Yirol Road because people are travelling all the time. As you can see here, several trucks heading to Yirol are resting and they will set off at night at their speed, the road is very safe and smooth.”

On his part, Manong Zackariah, the Project Coordinator of Juba-Yirol Road construction attested that the road has been safe for travelers.

“The road construction has improved security on the Juba-Yirol, as you can see at times trucks that develop mechanical problems stay on the road untouched till they are fixed.”

“You can see the fuel truck drivers sleeping under their trucks, some are even seen cooking”.

South Sudan signed a deal with a Chinese construction firm in which the country allocated 30,000 barrels of crude oil per day as payment for the significant infrastructure.

Once completed, the 392-kilometre highway was expected to connect the national capital with several states in Bahr el Ghazal, including parts of the Upper Nile region, and Abyei Administrative Area.

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