24th July 2024
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Kiir pays tribute to martyrs, says country at peace for 6 years

Author: Chany Ninrew | Published: Tuesday, July 9, 2024

President Salva Kiir - Credit: Office of the President

President Salva Kiir paid tribute to martyrs who died fighting for South Sudan’s freedom, while stating that the country has now been at peace for six consecutive years since the signing of the 2018 peace agreement.

Kiir made the remarks on Tuesday during his state of the nation address on the occasion of the 13th anniversary of independence.

“This occasion is a great testimony to ourselves to honor our fallen heroes and heroines who paid the ultimate price for our freedom and dignity,” the president said.

“As your president, it is my humble honor to pay tribute to all the brave men and women of this great land whose martyrdom bestowed upon us the independence of our country.”

President Kiir further said he wishes to inform the South Sudanese people that the country has experienced “relative peace” for six years in a row.

South Sudanese in Juba marked yet another muted anniversary of independence for the ninth time in what the government has repeatedly blamed on financial constraints.

The country was proclaimed independent on July 9th, 2011 – becoming the world’s newest nation after decades of ferocious civil wars fought between the north and the south of Sudan.

Tens of thousands poured into the streets of Juba city and other towns on a Saturday morning of that day – while hoisting flags and chanting “freedom”.

But following two sequences of civil war fought between 2013 and 2018, many cities in the country including Juba have continued to mark the independence anniversary in silence.

“It is our collective efforts to bring about lasting peace in the country and I assure you that my government will leave no stone unturned in the quest for tangible peace and prosperity that will be enjoyed by all.”

President Kiir acknowledged that the 2018 peace accord has been through a shaky implementation, but stated that many critical outstanding provisions have been implemented.

He further said the general security situation in the country has improved a lot.

“The ambushes, skirmishes and the constant cattle raids have significantly reduced and are now contained due to the hard work of our armed forces.”

Kiir also reiterated his call on opposition groups still waging war against the transitional government and those who are not part of the Nairobi Peace Process “to come home and develop our country together” in order to give way to lasting peace.

The president made the speech as families struggle to feed themselves due to a grinding inflation that has triggered a sharp increase in commodity prices.

The Sudan war damaged facilities transporting South Sudan’s chief crude oil to the Red Sea, leaving the national currency weakened against the US dollar.

In February 2024, a major pipeline transporting 60 percent of the crude oil to Port Sudan broke down depriving Juba of its main source of revenue and leaving civil servants unpaid for months as of now.

 

 

 

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