In less than a month’s time, on 9 July 2011, South Sudan will be declaring independence from North Sudan, becoming the world’s 195th country.
Tearfund’s Sudan Country Representative Jonas Njelango reflects on the prospects for this new country.
‘We have many hopes for the new Republic of South Sudan but we must be also realistic that there are a lot of challenges. In the South, it is estimated that 90 per cent of people live below the poverty line of less than US $1 a day. Despite this we are positive about what lies ahead.
‘In Goja, for example, the community, led by the local church, has a 20-year plan to address local problems. Six years on they are ahead of their plan, having built a school, a church and most houses now have toilets. Thanks to hygiene education, people are now washing their hands, boiling water and using rubbish pits.
‘Farming cooperatives are cultivating large areas of land and many now own small businesses. Such transformation comes through a process known as ‘Umoja’, which inspires churches and communities through the use of the Bible to consider what resources they have and to work together to undertake their own development.
‘This brings hope for the future of the South and we need to pray to see more of it.’
In the lead-up to 9 July, Tearfund has created a 21-day prayer guide to help you remember the people of Sudan and South Sudan during this key transitional time.
- Please pray for the new Republic of South Sudan as it declares independence on 9 July. Pray for wisdom for its leaders in dealing with the various challenges it will face.
- Pray for the transformation taking place across the country, in places like Goja, to bring hope to the Sudanese people. Pray this will continue and be scaled up.
- With One Voice, pray that all support given to the new Republic of South Sudan after 9 July will be helpful in building up the country and in line with South Sudanese priorities and aspirations.
- Pray for good relations between the Republic of Sudan and the new Republic of South Sudan after 9 July.
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