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South Sudan seeks financial assistance to increase food production

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By Ngor Arol Garang

July 14, 2011 (JUBA)- The government of new Republic of South Sudan on Thursday called on development partners to provide considerable financial assistance in order for the new state to increase food production.

Anne Itto from south Sudan’s ruling SPLM addresses a news conference in Juba (www.allvoices.com)

Farmers have been called upon to scale up food production to offset the looming threats of hunger and to focus on using sustainable food production to also benefit from local markets.

Anne Itto the caretaker minister of agriculture and forestry told the press on Thursday that ways must be found to increase yields with a combination of knowledge, technology and investment.

"We have whatever it takes to scale up production and that should be our aim because drought is a reality for us and even a number of countries across the region,’’ she said.

The drought which has hit several countries in East Africa, including Somalia is said to be the worst in 60 years.

Itto hopes that increased investment will improve food security by eliminating the current shortages that have engulfed the new country.

In her address, the Minister mentioned that South Sudan has unreliable rainfall, which hampers agricultural planning.

“Some parts of our country are experiencing unreliable rains. Some places like Northern Bahr el Ghazal state have gone for more than three weeks without rain”.

“This has significant effect on crops which have already been planted,” said Ito claiming that Burundi, Somalia, Kenya, Uganda, Congo DRC, Madagascar and Mozambique are all facing the possibility of famine. She said prices for basic goods have gone up because most of the areas depend on imported food.

“We are experiencing [an] upsurge in food prices. I am told maize price in Nairobi has gone up from 215 USD per ton (323/- per kilo) in January to 465 USD per ton (744/-per kilo) in June 2011, reflecting price increase of 130 per cent. These prices are quadrupled in South Sudan because of transport cost”, she said.

The senior member of the South Sudan’s ruling party, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) explained that the policy of her ministry encourages participatory approach of all groups and associations of farmers, livestock keepers, suppliers, processors, transporters, researchers, in order to push for improved economical and organisational environment for the sector.

She believes that a dialogue between stakeholders and a strengthening of agricultural associations can assist the sector in becoming commercialised and highly productive, leading to poverty reduction and an improved standard of living for the agricultural community, which make up the majority in South Sudan.

(ST)

Anne Ito, caretaker minister of agriculture and forestry, 14 July 2011 (ST) (mp3)
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  • 15 July 2011 08:01, by LongTweng

    Dr. Anne Itto, you are beautiful patriotic hard working mother of South Sudan.
    With you in this position, South Sudan is in a good starts. May God bless you in your work and the land so that there will be plenty to feed the rest of our neighbours and the world

    repondre message

    • 15 July 2011 10:40, by Naked Dinka

      For how long are we going to depend on international community to feed us? Where are billions of oil money? You the politicians to look into your own bank accounts and feed them, it’s there money, and they need it now.

      repondre message

      • 15 July 2011 10:56, by koriom

        Dear Naked Dinka,
        If you are a real Dinka by Birth then change that name.
        it is an abusing word and everybody in South Sudan is
        suppose to respect Dinka

        repondre message

    • 16 July 2011 05:40, by SSLA supporter

      No, No!! please don’t give them money as they are corrupts!!!!!

      No!! the international community shouldn’t be deceived by that corrupt regime of the SPLA/M, if those SPLM thieves really want money in order to buy food, well let the money not directly paid into their bank accounts or even in the Bank of South Sudan which is controlled by the regime, let the money be given to UN to buy food and then distributes it to our hungry population otherwise, SPLM criminal network will never buy food with such a money they are begging in the name of southern Sudanese, if those crimimals are honest then where the 20 billions of dollars they received as 50% of oil revenue!!!! don’t give them money in our names as they will just embezzle it and later on we will have had time to repaying the debt!! SPLM idiots that is why they separated the county to do as they want with total impunity!! over our dead bodies!!!

      repondre message

  • 15 July 2011 13:28, by Dau Mawut

    The Government of the Republic of South Sudan must use the requested money according to their request.

    Otherwise things will .....................!!

    repondre message

  • 15 July 2011 14:43, by Naked Dinka

    Dear Koriom,
    why do I need to change the name? the name "naked dinka" tells it all.

    repondre message

    • 15 July 2011 15:08, by Mading Makuac

      Naked Dinka,
      you might be wrong if it is the way you think.
      Please don’t abuse Dinka ,let your mum and dad
      teach you the goodness of Dinka

      repondre message

  • 15 July 2011 15:05, by Nhomlawda

    Ito

    GOSS needs to invest first in agriculture before asking others to support.Show us what ministry of agriculture had produced over the years of GOSS existence.
    Stop that useless language of expecting others to work for us.
    We have enough oil money that can be invested in agriculture. We need to do something first before we begin asking international community.

    repondre message

  • 16 July 2011 20:13, by marie

    Ann Itto,
    It is obvious that for the last past six years, you people have been developing agricultural policies, but now it is time to put all these plans into action. You cannot expect our peasants to produce food for us since most of them have just come back from refuge camps. It is the role of the government to embark on large scale agricultural schemes since they have the potential and the money. We want to see the government do something instead of making all these useless statements.

    repondre message

  • 17 July 2011 08:58, by Adam

    Dear Southerners,

    I will say there will be no viable RoSS without peace with all, including the GoS. Yes, we have to propagate peace among ourselves, but that needs a lot of courage and self denial.

    We have a very hard and painful path to go. But it is very important to:

    1. Be realistic and have good relations with the GoS. We can do that by stopping putting our nose in their business (Darfur rebel’s support) and close all pending files as soon as possible. The most important files are SPLM/A in the North (Nuba & Ingasana), Abyei, demarcation of border, oil share, citizenship, dept and assets (including the properties of northern traders), currency, education issues (universities etc).

    2. Boost economic ties with the GoS. Make movement of citizens, cattle and trade easy. The 4 freedoms should be approved by both governments. A trade Treaty should be worked out very urgently. Trade with East Africa is not logical or economically feasible.

    3. Remove from office all officials who are known to be tribalists, trouble-makers or corrupted like Amoum, Alore, Atem Garang, Luka Beong and their likes.

    4. Appoint a balanced and wide-spectrum government which includes all southerners based on competence and experiences. New faces are needed for this crucial historical moment.

    5. Write a permanent constitution as soon as possible. The current one is mere dictatorship and one-party state.

    6. Minimize the dependence on foreign aid or borrowing. This is so dangerous to our freedom and ownership of our resources.

    7. Stop selling our land to international companies. The land belongs to the people.

    8. Start building infrastructure and encourage agriculture. Joint agricultural projects with the GoS on the border line should be encouraged.

    In fact, we have very difficult road to go. However, we are free and independent, but we need to be careful and thoughtful. Time for emotions and bad feeling should be over. Emotions leads to nothing but more suffering and backwardness.

    The people of Sudan are destined to live together. Anyone who is suggesting or working contrary to that is just trying to destroying the hopes of the people – and that will never succeed.

    Adam Milawaki, Kuajock

    repondre message

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