The Government of South Sudan on Wednesday signed the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF) to move the country from humanitarian to development assistance.
The UNSDCF is a framework comprehensively detailing the UN Country Teams’ collective effort to contribute to national development priorities in South Sudan for the period 2023-2025. It was developed through a detailed consultation process that included the government line ministries, private sector, civil society, academia, research institutions, women, and youth, among others.
Speaking during the signing ceremony in Juba, Nicolas Haysom, the head of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) said the sustainable cooperation framework details the commitment of UN agencies in terms of programs across peace, humanitarian, and development dimensions.
“It is in line with the national development strategy and the revitalized peace agreement and comes at a time when there is a new momentum following the adoption of the roadmap and the focus on our efforts to help build durable peace at local and national levels,” Haysom said.
The UNMISS chief urged the government to invest in peace for development as the country has vast natural resources.
“South Sudan has huge development and economic potential in agriculture, livestock, renewable energy, tourism, wildlife, trade, mining, water, culture,” he said. “It is essential that the government which has now defined a dual pathway to peace and prosperity firstly, through the roadmap and secondly, the development strategy concentrate efforts towards sustainable peace and development.”
Cabinet Affairs Minister Dr. Martin Elia Lomuro and Finance Minister Dier Tong Ngor signed the framework on behalf of the government while Sarah Beysolow Nyanti, The UN Resident Coordinator signed on behalf of the UN.
The signing was witnessed by President Salva Kiir Mayardit who said the framework would relieve him from being blamed for being unaccountable.
“All of you will be my witnesses should there be any shortfall about what we agree on and this relieves me from all the accusations because the NGO community pushes everything to the government and say that billions of dollars have been paid to South Sudan but they are not seen,” President Kiir said. “Now there will be accountability and none of us will jump out of it. If you get one dollar you will account for it, if you get 10 dollars you will account. We as a government will account for whatever will be given to us but not what has been given to some individuals.”
Meanwhile, the UN’s Sarah Beysolow Nyanti said the government and the UN should work collaboratively.
“We need to work together to pursue development in the youngest republic on the continent,” she said. “This is the vision of today, the spirit with which we came and I am very grateful to the government for its commitment.”