“Cutting the head is not the cure to a headache”, Pibor youths counselled as humanitarian workers departed.
Over 70 humanitarian workers were evacuated from Pibor due to a threat made by the area’s youths over job concerns. Four UN humanitarian helicopters flew 78 aid workers, including three foreigners, to Juba yesterday.
The Greater Pibor Administrative Area youth issued a warning to non-governmental organizations on Saturday, giving them 72 hours to respond to demands for 80 per cent employment in local and international organizations.
As rightly pointed out, such a high intolerance and division, job segregation (Xenophobia) sown in the country by today’s regime shouldn’t only be viewed as an issue of the few who have expressed their concern and dissatisfaction but should be taken as a National concern.
Following this critically, Renk’s youth at first, seconded by Torit, Rumbek and now Pibor. Rather than fighting the NGOs, the situation requires a policy framework.
It is the government’s failure that has created the vacuum. Youths must direct their concerns at the government so that measures that benefit South Sudanese citizens may be implemented.
For example, according to a Miraya Radio report, 75 of those evacuated are South Sudanese (since only three international staff). If the 75 are foreigners and not South Sudanese, as some youths say, how do they get passports? Is it not through South Sudanese systems? The youths must first deal with the system and ensure that it is functioning correctly, after which everything else will fall into place.
It is also essential to highlight that the notion that NGOs should be the ones offering profitable employment for the youth while simultaneously providing necessary amenities such as medical, education, and food is a “misunderstanding” as well as a “misconception.” A responsible government should be accountable for creating employment for its people and providing or enabling essential services.
It seems that the Pibor youths, while fighting for their rights, are shooting themselves in the foot due to the humanitarian workers’ departure from Pibor. According to UNOCHA, the most recent event in Pibor affected response activities for over 100,000 of the most vulnerable individuals in the Greater Pibor Administrative Area.
The government intends to meet with the youth tomorrow, according to Jay Adigora Alual, Minister of Information in Greater Pibor when the Chief Administrator returns from a crucial trip in Juba.