SOUTH SUDAN / MEDIA WORKSHOP

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14-May-2021 00:03:43
A two-day workshop on the role of media in the permanent constitution-making process organized by several UN agencies has encouraged South Sudanese journalists to continue in its vital role in reporting, educating and disseminating information for civic engagement and public participation. UNMISS

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STORY: SOUTH SUDAN / MEDIA WORKSHOP
TRT: 3:43
SOURCE: UNMISS
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 11 MAY 2021, JUBA, SOUTH SUDAN

SHOTLIST:

1.Various shots, participants at workshop
2. SOUNDBITE (English) Guy Bennett, Chief, Political Affairs, United Nations Mission in South Sudan:
“This process, this constitution-making process will lay the foundation for the electoral system and pave the way for elections. Article 6.13 of the peace agreement states that the process of constitution-making shall be led and owned by the people of South Sudan. It highlights the participatory and inclusive process between citizens and political leaders in South Sudan. Popular participation and constitution making is premised on the idea that democratic constitutions should be created and adopted through dialogue, and not just dominated by elites. This form of constitution-making is promoted by the UN and many other international organizations, especially in support of peacebuilding efforts.”
3. Various shots, journalists listening
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Samuel Doe, Country Representative, United Nations Development Programme:
“This is a history-making exercise. The extent to which it’s is done is it is inclusive, you achieve a society that is more cohesive, while the social contract is evident. If it is divisive and exclusive, you achieve a society that builds a foundation of polarization and hostility for the future. This country has come a long way. This is your opportunity to cement peace and achieve the prosperity that, I believe, is the destiny of South Sudan.”
5. Various shots, more journalists
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Peter Magoola, Country Representative, UN Women:
“We need to be the watchdog as the media. You are the watchdog, to make us stakeholders accountable on all these aspects we are promoting – the rights of women, the human rights aspects, issues of natural resource management, the issues of education, health—which are going to be encompassed within this constitution. It is [up to] you to make the government and stakeholders accountable on these commitments which will come out of this constitution.”
7. Various shots, journalists
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Yath Awan Yath, Under-Secretary, Ministry of Information, Communications Technology and Postal Matters:
“If we have a constitutional process going on, the making of the constitution as well as all the other processes that are taking place as part of the agreement that we made among ourselves, then your role is very important because we want an outcome that is balanced, which is inclusive, which has not left anybody behind.”
9. Various shots, journalists

STORYLINE:

A two-day workshop on the role of media in the permanent constitution-making process organized by several UN agencies has encouraged South Sudanese journalists to continue in its vital role in reporting, educating and disseminating information for civic engagement and public participation.

Highlighting that South Sudan was approaching its tenth anniversary after gaining independence from its northern neighbour, Sudan, Guy Bennett, Head, Political Affairs, UNMISS, at a joint workshop organized by the peacekeeping mission and UN Agencies, Funds and Programmes on the role played by national media partners in promoting civic engagement by all citizens, said that the world’s youngest nation was at a critical point with regard to implementing the provisions of the peace agreement, and that a permanent constitution-making process was fundamental for South Sudan to become a durable democracy.

SOUNDBITE (English) Guy Bennett, Head, Political Affairs, United Nations Mission in South Sudan:
“This process, this constitution-making process will lay the foundation for the electoral system and pave the way for elections. Article 6.13 of the peace agreement states that the process of constitution-making shall be led and owned by the people of South Sudan. It highlights the participatory and inclusive process between citizens and political leaders in South Sudan. Popular participation and constitution making is premised on the idea that democratic constitutions should be created and adopted through dialogue, and not just dominated by elites. This form of constitution-making is promoted by the UN and many other international organizations, especially in support of peacebuilding efforts.”

Mr. Bennett, who was speaking a couple days after South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir dissolved parliament, a move that paved the way for its reconstitution in line with the Revitalized Peace Agreement signed in 2018, said momentum on the implementation of the peace agreement is important.

The workshop was supported by UNMISS, UN Women, UNESCO and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and included participation from the Reconstituted Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission.
Speaking to attending journalists, Samuel Doe from UNDP highlighted the criticality of the constitution making process and the importance of giving every citizen a voice.

SOUNDBITE (English) Samuel Doe, Country Representative, United Nations Development Programme:
“This is a history-making exercise. The extent to which it’s is done is it is inclusive, you achieve a society that is more cohesive, while the social contract is evident. If it is divisive and exclusive, you achieve a society that builds a foundation of polarization and hostility for the future. This country has come a long way. This is your opportunity to cement peace and achieve the prosperity that, I believe, is the destiny of South Sudan.”

Speaking at the forum, Country Representative of UN Women, Peterson Magoola said South Sudanese media partners need to play an impartial role which will hold all accountable.

SOUNDBITE (English) Peter Magoola, Country Representative, UN Women:
“We need to be the watchdog as the media. You are the watchdog, to make us stakeholders accountable on all these aspects we are promoting – the rights of women, the human rights aspects, issues of natural resource management, the issues of education, health—which are going to be encompassed within this constitution. It is [up to] you to make the government and stakeholders accountable on these commitments which will come out of this constitution.”

SOUNDBITE (English) Yath Awan Yath, Under-Secretary, Ministry of Information, Communications Technology and Postal Matters:
“If we have a constitutional process going on, the making of the constitution as well as all the other processes that are taking place as part of the agreement that we made among ourselves, then your role is very important because we want an outcome that is balanced, which is inclusive, which has not left anybody behind.”

At the workshop, participating journalists were sensitized on various areas of the country’s permanent constitution-making process, while deliberating on their own role as well as gender considerations. Another important theme addressed was how media partners can engage in peacebuilding.
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