The Prime Minister, Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda has saluted church leaders from South Sudan for championing issues related to enhancing peace in South Sudan. He said the Church is the voice of the people and the population has confidence in it.
He called upon the church leaders to continue playing their leadership role in the community and also praying for peace and stability to be restored in South Sudan.
The Premier made the remarks while meeting with a delegation of religious leaders from South Sudan at the office of the Prime Minister in Kampala on Wednesday.
The aim of the meeting was to discuss issues pertaining to South Sudan peace processes and the South Sudanese Refugees in Uganda.
The Prime Minister said restoration of peace in South Sudan is not only beneficial to South Sudan but also to Uganda and other neighbors, adding that peace will promote development of the region.
He noted that the Government of Uganda is optimistic about South Sudan’s ability to restore peace and stability in the country and thus called for consolidated efforts in the process.
“Uganda is very optimistic about the future of South Sudan because it is very common for any young nation to experience and have conflicts. However, peace cannot be meaningfully sustained unless it is supported. Therefore, Uganda emphasizes inclusiveness in creating peace, and as a result it is working with both opposition and government leaders of South Sudan to enhance peace,” the Prime Minister said.
Rugunda also saluted the delegation for visiting the refugee camps, and said that Uganda will continue to pursue its open door refugee policy, since no one chooses the status of a refugee.
“As Uganda, we have an obligation to support each other whenever issues arise and this is our policy. We therefore treat the people of South Sudan as our own brothers and sisters. This is because no one chooses to be a refugee. In Uganda, we are obliged to enable and assist the refugees to acquire skills which will enable them to be productive when they go back to their countries,” the Premier said.
He also noted that Uganda enjoys good relations with South Sudan and all its leaders, and promised to convey the delegation’s message to President Museveni.
Rugunda pledged Uganda’s continued support in the peace process of South Sudan.
The Chairperson of South Sudan Council of Churches, and also the leader of the delegation team, Reverend Peter Gai, thanked the Government of Uganda for accommodating refugees from South Sudan, and requested that Uganda continues to support the country in ensuring that peace is restored.
He also thanked the Prime Minister, Dr. Rugunda for giving them a message of hope as regard to restoring peace in South Sudan.
The General overseer of the Pentecostal Church in South Sudan, Reverend Isaiah Dau, requested that His Excellency, President Museveni mobilizes the East Africa Community member states to draw a clear road map to end conflict in South Sudan.
The delegation also visited the refugee camps in West Nile and thanked host communities for taking care of the refugees.
BY DOREEN NASASIRA
Wednesday, December 20, 2017