Young people need jobs and development in Yambio

May 27, 2016

UNDP Country Director, Balázs Hovárth, greets ministers.

UNDP Country Director, Balázs Horváth, visited the State capital Yambio and met with the Acting State Governor, Hon. Victor Edward Kpiawandu, and his team of ministers to explore ways of collaboration and support.

“We want to help this country to move from conflict to sustainable development. We are developers but we are not magicians, we need to hear from you [local Government] what you need, what your priorities are,” affirmed UNDP Country Director, Balázs Hovárth.

“We appreciate all the efforts of UNDP all over the country, we thank you for your presence and your service here,” declared the Acting State Governor, Hon. Victor Edward Kpiawandu.

UNDP is present in Yambio through the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and Republic of South Sudan (RSS) Joint Programme, which seconding civil servants from IGAD Member States to provide training and educate local staff at organizational and institutional levels to ministries, commissions, hospitals, etc.

During the meeting every minister presented the areas in which they need extra support.

“We need to train local police forces and administrators and we need to develop infrastructures in the County so that people can rely on the local authorities,” said Minister for Local Government and Law Enforcement, Hon. Ezekiel Bugwa.

“We are looking for special training in Finance, Crime Prevention and Investigation. We want to recruit 2000 people, all young people, and we will need a coordination mechanism between all the states,” declared the Police Commissioner, Major General Monday Enoka.

Yambio is located in southwestern South Sudan, close to the International border with the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and 444 kilometres, by road, west of Juba. Although the County is in an agricultural area with a lot of potential for development, the civil war have truncated the growth prospects of the State’s inhabitants.

“We have 78 cooperatives very active in cultivation of different fruits, but the roads are very bad, the rain is heavy, in August, the river will flood and the people of this area will be cut off. It will be very difficult for them to go to the market to sell their products. There is no clean water, we have lost a lot of equipment and tools during the conflict, and we are not getting chemicals for our crops, how can we be productive under these conditions?” said the State Minister of Agriculture, Hon. Grace Datiro.

“In the past, it has always been an issue to get partners and donors in this part of the country since our resources are abundant, but we have always needed support to develop strategies for getting benefits from our resources,” affirmed Minister for Education, Gender and Social Welfare, Hon. Philip Pia Michael.

South Sudan has high levels of unemployment and underemployment, untapped economic potential and a huge demographic dividend with a high majority of the population between 18-32 years of age.

“When the peace agreement was signed, the young people and some child soldiers came back home, but here there are no jobs. How we can integrate all these non-educated young people into the society that have spent years fighting? They are coming home and if we are not able to give them something to do with their life, they will go back to fight”, added Hon. Philip Pia Michael.

“We need UNDP’s support for education, vocational training, to create infrastructures for professional training centres and high level education”, he concluded.

UNDP’s Community Security and Arms Control (CSAC) project aims to help the Government of South Sudan at all its level to build peace and security for communities and establish conditions for development in South Sudan.

“3/4 of South Sudanese are under 30, youth employment has to be a priority. If we give the young people the alternative of vocational training and employment, they are clever enough to realize that it is much better to earn their living instead of taking the risk of being shot”, declared UNDP Country Director, Balázs Hovárth.

To enhance local economic development, employability and contribute to improved livelihoods for vulnerable urban and rural communities in South Sudan, UNDP is developing a project for self-employment through alternative models of entrepreneurship and enterprise development.

“Jobs must be created, and people should be employable, they need training and capacity building. There is still a humanitarian need in the country but humanitarian agencies should buy local products produced in the most peaceful areas of the country to supply those areas that are still suffering the consequences of the conflict. This is an opportunity that can be done soon and in this way, humanitarian agencies can help the development of the country as well”, concluded UNDP Country Director, Balázs Hovárth.

State Governor, Hon. Victor Edward Kpiawandu, and his team of minister together with UNDP team

Check out our Flickr to see more pictures of UNDP visit in Yambio. 

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