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South Sudan VP calls on citizens to hold leaders accountable 

Ayaa Benjamin, the Gender Minister, Jelte Van,Netherland ambassador, Chan Reech Madut,chief Justice and Rabecca Nyandeng Vice president for gender cluster(R) 

By Simon Deng

South Sudan’s Vice President Gender and Youth Cluster has called on citizens to challenge unfair practices by powerful political elites.

Rabecca Nyandeng, said these remarks on Tuesday during her visit to the Gender Based Violence (GBV) court in Juba, the capital of South Sudan.

“We have a duty to empower our citizens by ensuring that they have access to justice, that they can challenge unfair practices and hold those in power accountable for their actions,” said Nyandeng

She bemoaned the fact that after separation of South Sudan from Sudan in 2011, citizens are still wallowing in poverty, and inequality before the justice system.

Stephen Simon, the head of the GBV Court, said it was established following to deal with the rising GBV cases across the country.

“The judiciary before establishing GBV court conducted research which revealed tremendous increase in the rate of offenses being committed in relation to minors, and also gender-based violence offenses in the last four years,” said Simon. 

He disclosed that special courts have since been set up to handle GBV cases across the country.

Jelte Van Wieren, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Netherlandsin South Sudan, said justice is important to heal the past wounds.

Adding that sexual and gender based violence are some of the human rights violations being recorded in South Sudan.

“It is sad to say that almost all South Sudanese women encounter some type of gender- based violence throughout their lives, and this includes wide range of violent acts from harassment to child marriage and rape as an act of war,” said Wieren.

He added that the Commission on Truth, Reconciliation and Healing under chapter 5 of the revitalized peace deal once established has an important role to tackle human rightsviolations.

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