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STUDENTS-Gov’t secures 105 certificates from Zimbabwe

By James Atem Kuir

The government has finally secured the release of 105 academic certificates for South Sudanese students who studied in Zimbabwe.

The government of Zimbabwe has been withholding academic certificates for more than 100 South Sudanese students who studied and graduated thereon government scholarship over unpaid arrears amounting to more than 1.6 million US dollars.

Speaking upon return from Zimbabwe at Juba International Airport yesterday, the Director-general for Administration and Finance in the Ministry of Higher Education, Science and Technology, Kezekia Deng Awuolsaid the Zimbabwean government finally released the academic transcripts afterofficials from the two countries worked out the payment ofthe outstanding dues.

“It was a little bit terrible, the minster of higher education on Zimbabwe side accepted it but said a committee has to be formed to work payment of other arrears. So, a committee was formed, on the Zimbabwean side, it was led by legal advisor and I led on the South Sudanese side. It was a terrible debate but we managed to reach an agreement on payment plan… the balance to be paid in four installment starting in December 2021 and complete the payment in 2023,” DG Awuol said.

KpariMarchelline Peter Kassino, a former student who studied Chemical Technology in Zimbabwe but could notreceive her transcript upon graduation in 2019, said her plans were disrupted by the delayed payment of arrears by the government.

She said she is now glad tofinally have hercertificate after three years.

“Today I’m so excited that I can’t express. It was so stressing to apply and be asked to prove what you studied but how do you prove it without a document? It was really hard,” she said.

Abraham AtemAtemKur, another student who graduatedin Zimbabwe in 2020 said he had initially planned to pursue graduate studies immediately but could not do so due to absence of his certificate.

“I am very excited to be told that my certificate is here.I am feeling positive about myself today, I feel now not only for job but I also can make it to further my studies anywhere in the world,” Mr. Kur said.

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