Activist condemns violation of children’s right to education

By Okan Thomas Onyango

A civil Society activist in Bor, Jonglei state has condemned what he termed as violation of children’s right to education.

This was after the Minister of General Education and Instruction suspended seven counties from sitting for final primary eight examinations due to insecurity in some counties of Upper Nile and Jonglei state.

Speaking to Juba Monitor Newspaper, the Executive Director for INTREPID South Sudan, Bol Deng Bol said that the government should not tamper with the future of the children but allow them to do the same examinations. Prior to the onset of the Primary Examinations in the Country, five hundred and thirty-four primary school candidates missed out in Jonglei state.

“Honestly, why would both the National and State Governments collude in messing up the academic plans of these innocent Children who don’t know any conflicts between SPLM-IG or SPLM-IO? The minister surprisingly, terminated 11 examination centres in Jonglei State. These centres are; 5 in Fangak, 4 in Nyirol, 1 in Ayod and 1 in Akobo. As a result, a total of 534 primary school Candidates in the state missed out the examination, simply because the Government couldn’t supposedly guarantee security in the four (4) Counties above,” Bol said.

According to the executive director, South Sudan’s transitional Constitution as amended 2011, portrays Children with equal rights and forbids such discrimination [under article 17 (1) (e)] while article 29 stimulates their rights to education.

This circumvention of the Children’s Rights to education can never be justified whatsoever. The parties to R-ARCSS should address their political differences politically and spare these children irrespective of where they come from, for they are South Sudanese and deserve equal treatment countrywide.

This week, the Office of the First Vice President, Dr. Riek Machar refuted the reports of meeting their leader with the Minister of General Education and Instructions, Awut Deng Acuil over the suspension of the primary eight examinations in the Opposition controlled areas.

Over eight hundred primary eight pupils missed sitting for primary eight examinations in a number of selected counties in Upper Nile and Jonglei state or areas under the control of Opposition due to insecurity in those areas.

The decision drew rough reactions from the SPLM/A-IO leadership, education sector donor community, activists and the general public among others.

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