South Sudan

New camp leaders elected at UN protection site at Malakal

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JANET ADONGO

A new team of community leaders has been elected to the Peace and Security Council (PSC) at the Protection of Civilians site next to the United Nations base in Malakal, in the Upper Nile region of South Sudan.

The team is responsible for representing the nearly 25,000 internally displaced people who’ve sought sanctuary at the site and ensuring they live peacefully with each other. Of the 41 elected officials, 12 are women, including a new female Treasurer.

“I must caution you to remain apolitical and to act as binders among communities and work for all regardless of ethnic backgrounds or any other factors,” said acting Head of Field Office Anthony Agyenta in his opening remarks at an induction training session for the PSC. He urged the leaders to reach beyond the POC to explore opportunities for the displaced people to return to their homes and appealed to them to work in the best interest of the community.

The Civil Affairs Department in Malakal, Relief, Reintegration and Protection as well as camp managers from the Danish Refugee Council, conducted the one-day induction training to brief the new leaders on their expected roles and responsibilities.The Civil Affairs team made presentations on the terms of reference document, which was collaboratively developed with sections and humanitarian partners to guide the operations of the PSC.

Anthony Agyenta said the seamless election of a new PSC was a positive development and testimony to the improvement of intercommunal relationships and social cohesion. The team is expected to officially assume office on 1 January and they will play a lead role in assisting UNMISS and humanitarian partners to better coordinate activities at the POC site.