SOUTH SUDAN / EZO RETURNEES

12-Nov-2019 00:03:58
A steady stream of returnees has been making their way home to South Sudan following the signing of the Revitalized Peace Agreement in September 2018 which has resulted to calm in the country. UNMISS
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STORY: SOUTH SUDAN / EZO RETURNEES
TRT: 03:58
SOURCE: UNMISS
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGES: ENGLISH / ARABIC / NATS

DATELINE: 12 NOVEMBER 2019, EZO, SOUTH SUDAN
SHOTLIST
1. Various shots, South Sudan and Congo border crossing and Ebola screening
2. SOUNDBITE(English) Nabure Rose, Returnee Nominator:
“Sometimes in a day we get three people returning from Congo, after two or three days more two people, so just like that, sometimes one, in week sometimes we get like seven or five people returning from Congo.”
3. Various shots, Returnee Victoria sitting with her family
4. SOUNDBITE(Arabic) Victoria Emilio, Returnee in Ezo:
“We came back because we were hearing that peace process was going on well. And we were hearing over radio also that those who took refuge to other countries should came back. When we heard that we felt happy because home is home, that’s why we decided to come back.”
5. Wide shot, Ezo town
6. SOUNDBITE(English) Siani Martin, Coordinator of Relief and Rehabilitation Commission Ezo:
“They have not yet gone to their own various places as they still stay here with their people around. And they still face problem of food shelter and other things that can sustain human being.”
7. Various shots, school under tree and children learning
8. SOUNDBITE(English) Justin, Returnee in Ezo South Sudan:
“My name is Justin, I am in class four, I want to be a doctor.”
9. Med shot, pupil attending lesson
10. Tilt down, pupil writing
11. Wide shot, pupil attending lesson
12. SOUNDBITE(English) Inyasio Akile Togo, Returnee in Ezo South Sudan:
“This is our kids to leave them like this idle for money is not good. That is why we continue teaching them.”
13. Various shots, UN Mission delegation having chat with the pupils
14. SOUNDBITE(English) Inyasio Akile Togo, Returnee in Ezo South Sudan:
“We think that it is our country, but to go and remain there in Congo is difficult for us. Because the situation there in Congo, is a bit tough, that is why we came back to open school and teach our children.”
15. Various shots, pupils singing
16. SOUNDBITE (English) Christopher Muchiri Murenga, Head of Field Office Yambio:
“The school should also be upholding, it already has 68 students but the total count I think should go above that. And this will be a very important thing to do because education is one of the key drivers for development, it’s also a key driver for peace, the more knowledge people have the more they are likely to engage in peaceful and constructive activities. So, this is one of the things that we are looking at.”
17. Wide shot, pupils posing for photo
STORYLINE
A steady stream of returnees has been making their way home to South Sudan following the signing of the Revitalized Peace Agreement in September 2018 which has resulted to calm in the country.

Across the border point of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and South Sudan lies, Ezo town.

At least seven returnees cross into South Sudan weekly from the DRC into Ezo.

As they cross, they are screened by health inspectors for Ebola. So far 1,251 households of returning refugees have been recorded and registered in Ezo Town.

SOUNDBITE(English) Nabure Rose, Returnee Nominator:
“Sometimes in a day we get three people returning from Congo, after two or three days more two people sometimes one, in week sometimes we get like seven or five people returning from Congo”

Victoria Emilia, a South Sudanese mother of seven, has since March, returned home to Ezo because she heard that peace had returned. A lack of schools prompted her to return with only some of her children.

SOUNDBITE(Arabic) Victoria Emilio, Returnee in Ezo:
“We came back because we were [heard] that the peace process was going on well. And we were hearing over radio also that those who took refuge in other countries should came back. When we heard that, we felt happy because home is home, that’s why we decided to come back.”

Officials registering the spontaneous return of refugees in the area, said that the returnees are expected to face challenges due to lack of basic services.

SOUNDBITE(English) Siani Martin, Coordinator of Relief and Rehabilitation commission Ezo:
“They have not yet gone to their own various places as they still stay here with their people around. And they still face problem of food, shelter and other things that can sustain human beings.”

For the resilient returnees, there is already a lack of schools in the area, but close to 70 school-going children who have returned from DRC have begun learning under trees.

Nine -year-old Justin is among the students, and he is optimistic about his future.

SOUNDBITE(English) Justin, Returnee in Ezo South Sudan:
“My name is Justin, I am in class four, I want to be a doctor.”

To get to them, their teacher has to cycle three hours to ensure the lessons go on. He does this with no pay.

SOUNDBITE(English) Inyasio Akile Togo, Returnee in Ezo South Sudan:
“This are our kids to leave them idle for money is not good. That is why we continue teaching them”

Despite all the challenges, these returnees say home is where they want to be because of the prevailing peace.

SOUNDBITE(English) Inyasio Akile Togo, Returnee in Ezo South Sudan:
“We think that it is our country, but to go and remain there in Congo is difficult for us. Because the situation there in Congo, is a bit tough, that is why we came back to open school and teach our children.”

An assessment Mission from the United Nations Mission in South Sudan visiting Ezo witnessed the challenges returning communities are face with.

SOUNDBITE (English) Christopher Muchiri Murenga, Head of Field Office Yambio
“The school should also be upholding, it already has 68 students but the total count I think should go above that. And this will be a very important thing to do because education is one of the key drivers for development, it’s also a key driver for peace, the more knowledge people have the more they are likely to engage in peaceful and constructive activities. So, this is one of the things that we are looking at.”

It is hoped that South Sudan’s prevailing peace will hold and that various organizations will chip in to ensure basis needs are met by these returning communities.
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