Japan hails President Kiir’s Independence Day speech
JUBA (July 13, 2012) – Japan on Friday hailed the speech South Sudanese President Salva Kiir delivered on the occasion of the first anniversary of the country’s independence, saying that it assured the Japanese government and people of Juba’s commitment to peace and development.
This came during a meeting SPLM Deputy Secretary General Cde Anne Itto held at her office with the head of the Japanese mission in South Sudan, Hideo Fukushima.
The Japanese envoy praised the President’s commitment to peace both internally and externally, especially with the Republic of Sudan, according to Cde Itto.
She said that Mr. Fukushima also expressed his country’s appreciation of President Kiir’s commitment to improving the economic wellbeing of the people by reducing the size of the government and putting more resources in quality education and vocational training, as well as in basic infrastructure.
The Deputy Secretary General briefed the Japanese envoy on the current political and economic situation in the country and on ongoing negotiations with Sudan on post-independence issues.
Cde Itto also explained actions that the government of South Sudan had decided to take to demonstrate its commitment to peace with Sudan such as proposing the resumption of trade relations with the Republic of Sudan and on protection of the rights and property of Sudanese in South Sudan.
In June, Japan donated South Sudan some US$ 52 million for infrastructure projects. These include rehabilitation of the Juba River Port and construction of a new bridge on the Nile.
The Japanese government, through the Japan International Agency, has funded a number of projects in the country over the past years, including construction and rehabilitation of roads and bridges in Juba, water supply systems as well as funding capacity-building initiatives in South Sudan.