South Sudan

ACT Appeal: Emergency Preparedness, Response and Recovery/Reintegration in the new Republic of South Sudan (RoSS) – SDN112

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Appeal Target: US$ US$ 3,549,680

Balance Requested: US$ 3,181,414

South Sudan became the world's newest nation on the 9th of July 2011, the final step in the six-year Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), a deal which ended 2 decades of civil war in Sudan. There was jubilation, euphoric celebrations and tears of joy as the people of South Sudan from all walks of life descended in the capital Juba to witness the raising of the flag of the Republic of South Sudan with hope for a new dawn. It is the newest country in the world and the 54th state in Africa. Yet, the situation in South Sudan remains fragile and unpredictable. Insecurity is still prevalent; uncertainty in the political environment, infrastructure weak and social services almost nonexistent.

Whilst the state is established and has already received widespread recognition, the building of the new nation will require more than the optimistic words of the national anthem. Key negotiations between the North and South on citizenship, border demarcation, wealth sharing, and debt sharing remain unresolved and could plunge the two nations into yet another war. Border conflict has already forced 115,000 people to flee Abyei following the northern occupation of the contested region in May. Bombings continue in the northern oil state of South Kordofan, where those in opposition to the present Khartoum regime complain that the gubernatorial elections in the state were rigged. In both conflicts, accusations of serious crimes have been leveled against the military operations for deliberate targeting of civilians. Tensions in Blue Nile State remain high; a single incident can easily trigger large scale fighting. Sudan watchers foresee that should the violence deteriorate or persist in these flashpoint areas it is expected that a significant number of people could migrate to South Sudan given their historical connection with the SPLM/A.

Violence between SPLA and rebel factions have proliferated since the referendum with 4 armed groups currently battling the SPLA across 5 states namely Jonglei, Warrap, Unity, Upper Nile and Northern Bahr El Ghazal. The government of South Sudan blames Khartoum for supporting some of these rebellions with arms, a charge the Khartoum government denies. In addition, tribal tensions, cattle raiding and attendant revenge violence continue to cause death, especially to civilians and disruption to whole communities. According to UN-OCHA, more than 2,300 people have died in violence across the South this year alone. Farming, which is the lifeblood of families in South Sudan, has therefore been affected. This is compounded by the below normal rains that have been received so far. In total, at least 277,000 people have been displaced in South Sudan as a result of the various conflicts.

South Sudan remains one of the poorest countries on earth with some of the worst health and development indicators in the world. While it is already struggling with its existing population, more people continue to flood in. UN-OCHA reports that at least 307,000 people have returned from the North since October 2010, and up to 800,000 are also expected as the issues of citizenship of South Sudanese in the North remain unresolved and rhetoric from the northern government remains threatening. Many of the returnees have to start rebuilding their lives and rediscover their former livelihoods or find alternatives. These large scale returns exert additional pressure on the already limited resources and could potentially result in conflict between the returnees and host communities.

ACT Alliance members in South Sudan have been a source of relief to people affected by the violence and political turmoil. With this proposed appeal, ACT members will intensify their work by building upon the results of the preparedness appeal, SDN102 that was implemented from October 2010 to July 2011.