JUBA, JANUARY 17TH 2023 (Thejubamirror ) – South Sudan’s civil society activist Edmund Yakani has appealed to the donor community to support media houses, saying inadequate funding is to blame for low citizens’ participation in the ongoing discussion on the country’s transition to democracy and peace.
Yakani who is the Executive Director of Community Empowerment for Progress Organization (CEPO) made the remarks in a statement he extended to Thejubamirror news Desk. this morning and said the role of media to educate citizens is currently limited and cannot produce results due to lack of support.
“CEPO is urging donors to support media engagement on the political transitional events in South Sudan namely constitutional making process and conduct of elections. The media role in increasing civic education among the citizens is critical and essential that it should not undermine or underrated by the donor community in South Sudan,” Yakani said.
“Inadequate support for media in the past has directly contributed in low citizens engagement on holding their political leaders accountable on the genuine implementation of the political transitional tasks as enshrined in the R-ARCSS provisions,” he added.
The prominent activist further said that “media play a key role in south Sudanese society” and pointed out that “adequate funding to media for striking civic education among the population for effective engagement in the political transitional process is important in South Sudan.”
“Year 2023 is year that requires effective and proactive media role in the political transitional process in South Sudan since national elections is expected to take place in December 2024,” the prominent activist further stressed.
South Sudan media is currently under funded and censorship from government security agencies has made it difficult for media houses to operate in the world’s youngest country despite the signing of the revitalized peace agreement which provides for a free space for media and journalists to their work.
The international community including South Sudan’s closest powerful friends, United States, United Kingdom, Norway as well as the EU, have on several occasions called on the government security agencies to protect the right to information for citizens.