News / Africa

Free National ID Cards for South Sudan Returnees

South Sudanese returnees wait to pick up free national ID cards at Apada camp near Aweil in Northern Bahr el Ghazal on Tuesday, March 26, 2013.
South Sudanese returnees wait to pick up free national ID cards at Apada camp near Aweil in Northern Bahr el Ghazal on Tuesday, March 26, 2013.
Hou Akot Hou
— The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has provided free national identity cards to 1,000 South Sudanese living in camps for returnees in Northern Bahr el Ghazal. 

Among them were hundreds of people living in the Apada returnee camp outside Aweil.

South Sudanese who fled during the long civil war, and have returned in their droves since the comprehensive peace agreement was signed in 2005, have been unable to find work or attend school since they came back -- because they don't have national ID cards.

A national ID, shown behind this South Sudanese passport, is required for getting a job or applying to university in South Sudan.A national ID, shown behind this South Sudanese passport, is required for getting a job or applying to university in South Sudan.
x
A national ID, shown behind this South Sudanese passport, is required for getting a job or applying to university in South Sudan.
A national ID, shown behind this South Sudanese passport, is required for getting a job or applying to university in South Sudan.
The IDs are required for most jobs, to sit exams, and to apply to university. But they usually cost 45 South Sudanese pounds, or about 11 U.S. dollars, and many South Sudanese can't afford that sort of outlay.

The gross national income in South Sudan is around three US dollars a day, but in the camps, many people have no income at all.
 
UNHCR officials started working this month with the chiefs of the returnee camps around Aweil to collect the names of the most vulnerable before handing out free IDs to them on Tuesday.

Ngong Ngong Atak, 25, was one of the lucky recipients of the coveted card.
 
“This will make it easier for us to register and sit for exams. Some of us also want to get into university and without [the IDs], we cannot. The UNHCR has been helpful to us,” he said.

Agany Macham, 37, also received an ID. He has been without a job since he returned to South Sudan in 2011 and has had a hard time feeding his family. Now that he has a national ID, he plans to look for work.
 
The UNHCR handed out 400 national identity cards at Apada camp, and plans to give out several thousand more to returnees in Warrap and Western Bahr el Ghazal states. 
 
More than 700,000 South Sudanese returned from Sudan to South Sudan before a 2010 referendum on independence for the south. 

An estimated 230,000 South Sudanese are still in Sudan and want to return to the south, which became independent in July 2011.

Returnees aren't the only ones having problems getting a national ID: last month,

You May Like

Mali's Female Basketball Players Rebound After Islamist Occupation

Islamist extremists ruled northern Mali for most of 2012, imposing strict Sharia law, and now some 18 months later, the region is slowly getting back on its feet More

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

Many Chinese-made products go unsold, for now, with numerous Vietnamese consumers still angry over recent dispute More

Koreas Mark 61st Anniversary of War Armistice

Muted observances on both sides of heavily-armed Demilitarized Zone that separates two decades-long enemies More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Students in Business for Themselvesi
X
Mike O'Sullivan
July 26, 2014 11:04 AM
They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid