President Salva Kiir has banned singing of the national anthem in any public event in his absence.
The directive was announced by the minister of information after the weekly cabinet meeting at the weekend.
Michael Makuei says the national song is being misused, especially by government officials.
“We’ve seen that the anthem is played even when the ministers, undersecretaries, the governor or state ministers attend any function. This order should be observed because the anthem is not mean for everybody,” Makuei explained.
Addressing the media, Makuei said the instruction states that the national anthem shall be sung only in the presence of the president.
“It’s been observed that the national anthem is been played all over,” he stated.
“Everybody is playing the national anthem. For the information of everybody, the national anthem is only meant for the president, and functions attended by him.”
The National anthem is usually played or sung during national holidays, especially during the Independence Day celebrations, and is also performed during cultural and other festivals in the country.
It reflects the country’s history, struggles, and traditions of the nation and its people. And it also serves as an expression of national identity.
Makuei added that President Kiir has also directed that all commanders in their respective forces to stop quit speaking at public functions.
“They have the choice either to leave the uniform and go to the public and be a politician and be free to talk in public rallies,” Makuei said.
“Even if you are attending any function, please keep away. Don’t talk because that is not your field.”
The motive behind the ban is unclear, however, the Chief of Defense Forces recently made a statement which angered members of the public, including soldiers.
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