March 8, 2017 JUBA) – South Sudan leaders have stopped about 900 students living in the United Nations protection of civilian camps at Jebel Kujur from doing nationwide secondary school examinations.
- Wulu County students in a classroom undertaking exams on Monday, January 7, 2013 (ST)
A number of students interviewed by Sudan Tribune, described decision from the education ministry as very unrealistic.
Dak Buoth, a South Sudanese living in the diaspora, wondered why government gives pre-conditions for students living in the camps.
He, however, admitted that students would not be safe if they took risks of going out to do their exams, citing their safety in camps.
“We are verily unhappy with the SPLM-led regime for denying over 900 secondary school candidates to sit for their annual South Sudan national examination certificates merely because they’re residing in the United Nations protections camps,” said Bouth.
However, he said the government policy was misguided and ought to be revoked since it violates the right of students to education.
“As far as we are concerned, it is not an offense for internally displaced persons to live and work on UN premises. These hard-working Students can do their exams in any serene and secure center where they initially registered. Moreover, it was not their choice to live in PoCs [Protection of Civilian Sites]. It is common knowledge that South Sudanese went to PoCs in 2013 to seek refugees after their homes were raided, destroyed by masquerading and marauding soldiers”, he further stressed.
Buoth says despite the hard conditions people face in the U.N camps, the students never give up in continuing with their studies.
He urged the U.N mission in South Sudan to pressure government into allowing internally displaced persons undertake exams in the PoCs.
“As an alternative, the UNMISS can establish ‘Education Board’ that would deliver and monitor the examination processes within their jurisdiction. This group of educations experts and tutors can as well preside over the marking and rating of candidates, and eventually issue them with special Secondary Examination Certificates,” he said.
For the last two years of the conflicts, however, the internally displaced students living in the various U.N camps across the war-torn country were allowed to sit exams from within the U.N facility.