Reforms in South Sudan’s ministry of foreign affairs

Opinion,

By James Gatdet Dak

Minister of Foreign Affairs and International cooperation Awut Deng Acuil

February 9, 2020 (Thessherald)— I hope South Sudan’s “iron lady”, the current minister of foreign affairs, Awut Deng Acuil, has begun to voluntarily introduce and vigorously and fairly implement reforms in her institution, by also weeding out unqualified employees in all the embassies and diplomatic missions of the Republic of South Sudan, across the globe.

I am saying this because when minister Awut was the minister of labour and public service before the war broke out in 2013—and while I was a member of the Secretariat sitting in the cabinet meetings— I watched her one day lamenting as she was presenting to the cabinet (chaired by President Kiir), a bunch of applicants’ papers seeking employment in senior civil service positions in various institutions of government.

Minister Awut told the cabinet that she was shocked by the fact that many of those who claimed to be holding Bachelors, Masters, and even PhDs certificates, could not write or speak English well; and could not therefore express themselves well, or could not explain to committees at the ministry their field of study or relevance to employment in a particular area. She said this happened although majority of the applicants indicated they went to school in English-speaking countries abroad.

To her, she was concerned that most of the certificates were either fake, or were not thoroughly studied or obtained by those who held them.

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