County Headquarters handed over to the Eastern Equatoria Government
Juba: The South Sudan Recovery Fund (SSRF) handed over the newly constructed County Headquarters to the Government of Eastern Equatoria on Tuesday 30 October in Kapoeta South, Eastern Equatoria State. The Governments of the Netherlands, Norway and United Kingdom are the three donors to the SSRF. This project, under a UN Joint Programme called the Eastern Equatoria Stabilization Programme funded by the SSRF, was implemented by the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) with overall oversight, monitoring and coordination led by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
SSRF is a UN Multi-Partner Trust Fund, chaired by the national Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning and co-chaired by the UN Resident Coordinator. The Fund supports state governments to increase their responsiveness to community needs and priority development projects. The projects specifically focus on the extension of state government authority through improved presence and rule of law to conflict prone areas. The Honourable Mary Jervase Yak, Deputy Minister of Finance and Economic Planning explained in a written statement the role projects like this play in development “Extending the authority of the state is critical for peace and development, especially here in South Sudan, where many people in far remote areas are unable to access their government officials and other basic services.”
The County Headquarters are some of the largest, integrated local governance structures that have been built in response to the priorities expressed by the communities in Eastern Equatoria, and are intended to serve as a meeting point to facilitate dialogue between all levels of government and the community; and to encourage participatory policy-making. Mr. Toby Lanzer, the Deputy Special Representative of the UN Secretary General, UN Resident Coordinator and SSRF Co-Chair, stated “This County Headquarters is more than simply a building. It is about you, the girls, boys, women and men; the people of this county. This represents your collective voice. It is a place where the chiefs and Government officials can come together, meet and decide to develop their community”. The Paramount Chief for Kapoeta South explained “This is not the end but the beginning of development for our counties”.
In Eastern Equatoria SSRF has also supported the construction of three other County Headquarters, 140km of road between Budi and Ikotos counties, six boreholes, four water haffirs, one prison complex and one model market. The Honourable Louis Lobong Lojore, Governor of Eastern Equatoria highlighted the importance of these projects for the people of Eastern Equatoria “The vision and policy of our Government is to take services to the grassroots and we want Government to be present at all levels, the boma, payam, county and state.”
UNDP has embedded 14 experienced specialists in various ministries in Eastern Equatoria to mentor South Sudanese Civil Servants and support the Government in financial management, statistics, economic planning, organizational development, engineering and the delivery of medical services. In total, UNDP has supported the construction of 140km of road, 19 boreholes, 19 police posts, four water haffirs, four county headquarters, two food security projects, two maternity wards, two prison complexes, one special protection unit, one community resource centre, one model market and one police headquarters.
For further information, please contact: Marguerite Nowak, Team Leader Communications, United Nations Development Programme, South Sudan firstname.lastname@example.org Cell: 095 619 1254