Home | News    Wednesday 19 January 2011

Western Equatoria state governor encourages youth to take sports seriously


January 17, 2011 (YAMBIO) - The governor of Western Equatoria state Bangasi Joseph Bakosoro has encouraged the youth in the southern state to take sports into account as the south approaches its likely independence from the north.

W. Equatoria Governor Bangasi Joseph Bakosoro addressing players in the states referendum up. Jan 16, 2011 (ST)

Counting is underway for the south’s self determination vote, which was agreed as part of a 2005 north-south peace deal.

Addressing the players of Yambio County on Sunday 16th Jan 2011, evening at Yambio Freedom Square during the final of the referendum tournament Bakosoro urged the youth “to love sports as part of their lives.”

He called upon the idle young people “to join their colleagues in the field of sports.”

The governor urged love and harmony amongst citizens of the state more especially “after the independence of the south.”

He stressed that a new state South Sudan should be a unified republic for every Southerner “to exercise his/her rights towards the development of Africa’s newest nation.”

The governor cautioned the youth not to mix sports with tribalism which he said will not exist in his government.

“We are one people with one tribe which is Western Equatoria state in spite of our origins, whoever is [in] the state belongs to Western Equatoria” said Bakosoro.

He assured the youth that he will stand with them and by them at any cost citing that they “are the power of the state.”

The referendum tournament was organized by Western Equatoria Football Association to sensitize the youth about the referendum and to encourage them to vote for separation.

W. Equatoria Governor Bangasi Joseph Bakosoro hands the referendum cup to Villa United football club. Jan 16, 2011. (ST)

The tournament kicked off on November 15 2010, during the voter registration exercise, with 14 teams. Gbudue and Villa United qualified for the final, which took place January 16.

Villa United were crowned champions, after crushing Gbudue by three goals to one.

The governor commended the roles played by churches in the state during the referendum for self determination.

Addressing the congregation at St. Mary Catholic Church in Yambio on Sunday 16, Bakosoro said “the churches have strongly contributed for the success of the referendum in the state.”

He stressed that “the referendum is the life of every southern Sudanese who suffered for the past 56 years from the oppression of the Khartoum regime.”

The governor said that south Sudan already felt that it was independent, with people just waiting to celebrate the results.

“Our separation from the North is politically, but economically and socially we still remain Sudanese, we shall continue to trade with the North and build a strong relationship with Khartoum”, said the governor.

In addition, the deputy governor of western Equatoria who is the also chairperson of the state referendum task force, Sapana A. Abuyi appreciated the efforts and strategy that was laid by the governor towards security during the polls.

Abuyi said, “the referendum has been peacefully conducted without any case of violence, security threat in the state.”

The Bishop of the Catholic Dioceses of Tambura Yambio, Edwardo Hiboro Kusala said, “the referendum is a call of God to people of south Sudan to be free after many years of sufferings.”

Hiboro argued that south Sudan has been praying over many years for the attainment of peace and stability in the region, saying that “the Lord has answered the prayers.”

Meanwhile the Bishop of ECS Diocese of All Saints Cathedral Yambio, Peter Munde Yacub, called upon the people of Southern Sudan, “to unite and develop the newly born nation.”

Speaking to the congregation at All Saints Cathedral on Sunday, Munde said “time has come for work for the people of southern Sudan after 21 years of struggle.”

“With this golden chance we have achieved, let’s be as one people of Southern Sudan to face the challenges ahead of us, which is the recognition of human dignity in this new beloved Country” added Bishop Munde.

The referendum process in Western Equatoria State has been conducted fairly and freely despite insecurity concerns.

As counting continues for the results of the referendum, it is estimated that there was a turnout of over 98% in the state. An overwhelming vote for separation is expected from the initial results that have been released.


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  • 19 January 2011 07:17, by Lorolokin

    Hi Bakosoro,

    You are so a great governor with a great thoughts I thinks you are the leader where by Western Equatorian were been longing for. As such we need to come together as southern sudanese,we need to erase all those barriers of tribalism, ie calling people by their tribes is not acceptable if we really wanted the newest state in Africe to be a reality.
    Lets take Rwanda as an example you can’t call some one like Hutu or Tutsi otherwise you are jailed and fined simulteniously.
    My message to Salva Kiir the president of the Southern Sudan is that you need to put strong warning against any one categorizing people by tribes to punishable for up to 4 months in prison and 250 sudanese pounds fine.


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