JUBA/LONDON – British Minister for Africa, Andrew Stephenson announced an extra £18 million of UK aid on his first visit in his new role, which will be given to trusted partners to help vulnerable families in desperate need.
There are currently 7 million people in need of humanitarian assistance and nearly 2 million people on the brink of famine in South Sudan, where food insecurity is at its worst level in the past 8 years.
Minister Stephenson called on the Government of South Sudan and other parties involved in the conflict to stop obstructing the delivery of aid and step up efforts to help the millions of malnourished children, families and communities get access to vital supplies.
He also called on the Government to accelerate progress on the peace process, including security sector reform, establishing an open dialogue with opposition leader Riek Machar and delivering on the $100 million they pledged to help achieve peace.
Mr. Stephenson said South Sudan is a humanitarian catastrophe and vulnerable people face the daily threat of starvation.
I have seen first-hand that UK aid is saving lives and today’s step up in support will deliver urgently needed food, water and health services to hundreds of thousands of people.
We call on the Government of South Sudan to immediately lift all humanitarian access restrictions and to commit more resources to provide basic services such as health and education to give people hope for the future.
With just three months until the formation of the transitional government, time is running out. Significant effort and compromise are required to fully implement the peace agreement.
While in South Sudan, Minister Stephenson visited the World Food Programme’s warehouse in Juba to see first-hand how UK aid is helping save the lives of people who have fled conflict.
He also visited the Juba Protection of Civilian’s camp to learn about the key challenges of displacement in the country, as well as meeting with British soldiers deployed to the UN Peacekeeping mission there.