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Media fraternity elects representatives to CCM S. Sudan

From left: Samir Bol, Veronica Lucy Gordon (media representatives) here with Dr. Liza Novelo, Coordinator of CCM South Sudan at the Media Development Institute (MDI), 1st June 2018(Photo credit: Nichola Mandil).

By Nichola Dominic Mandil

Members of the media fraternity have elected two journalists to represent them at the South Sudan Country Coordinating Mechanism (CCM).

The two representatives are Ms. Veronica Lucy Gordon, the chairperson of the Association of Women’s Media in South Sudan (AMWISS) and Mr. Samir Bol, the Editor-in-Chief of The Mail Newspaper online were chosen last Friday at the Media Development Institute in Juba.

Madam Veronica will represent the media constituency at all CCM-SS meetings, which are slated for once every quarter (three months) and two extra-ordinary meetings. She will have the voting rights and takes part in decision making process related to CCM activities.

In her absence or due to any eventuality, Mr. Samir Bol, who was elected as an “alternate member” would represent the media and can vote in the absence of Veronica, but in her presence, Mr. Bol cannot vote since they will have the right to only one vote per constituency.

The South Sudan CCM is a country-level multi-stakeholder body that develops funding proposals for submission to the Global Fund for combating three diseases: HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis (TB) and Malaria (GFATM, the Global Fund).

In his briefing to the media, the Chair of CCM South Sudan, Dr. Kediende Chong, explained that CCMs provide grant oversight during implementation of activities supported by the Global Fund during any grant-negotiation and grant closure processes.

He said the Country Coordinating Mechanism of South Sudan (CCM-SS) includes representatives from the government, civil society, key affected populations and people living with the diseases, the private sector, academia, international non-governmental organisations (INGOs), and multilateral and bilateral development partners.

Following their election, the two representatives expressed gratitude to the media fraternity for trusting and commissioning them to represent the media constituency at CCM-SS.

“Your expectations are very high; we will work together and will provide feedback to you (the media fraternity). We will commit ourselves to CCM-SS and will always do our best,” Ms. Veronica stated.

Samir Bol said, “I am ready to represent the media at CCM, and I thank you for electing me.”

On his part, the Chair of CCM-South Sudan, Dr. Kediende Chong, who is from the National Ministry of Health congratulated the elected members of the media. “The media, you are the agent of growth; you have demonstrated here today in this room a democratic process,” he said.

“I believe the media will always educate us (the public) how to serve our people. As you can see in your constituency you are conscious about gender-balance, gender equality as seen during this election,” Dr. Chong added.

“The media in South Sudan is very democratic, and committed to gender equality. Even the United Nations (UN) is not gender balance like you the members of the media in South Sudan,” Dr. Chong asserted.

He expressed gratitude that Madam Veronica Lucy Gordon has returned to CCM-SS because she was one of the first media representatives to the group before its membership was frozen by Global Fund.

He said, “The CCM we have now is a renewed CCM, because the Global Fund has reinstated our membership as a member- country. We have our power back, and we want to thank Global Fund for reinstating our membership to be eligible for Global Fund funding,” Dr. Chong said.

He said after the membership of South Sudan has been reinstated, what is important is “to be consistent and maintain the quality of service we offer.”

He divulged that as a full member of Global Fund, South Sudan has access to “86 million” US dollars for the next three years. He said the fund will be used for fighting HIV/AIDS, Malaria and TB.

Representatives of the Media with Dr. Kediende Chong, CCM Chair and some of his staff, posed for a group photo after election, 1st June 2018(Photo credit: Nichola Mandil).

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