Indian engineers have launched a major infrastructure project in South Sudan that would improve connectivity between two major cities of the country and facilitate UN humanitarian operations in the area, the United Nations has said. The project to repair and rehabilitate the Malakal-Melut road would improve accessibility and would be a relief for all road users, including local motorists and traders, as well as humanitarian agencies trying to access vulnerable people, the local Governor, James Tor Munybuny, said yesterday at an event marking the commencement of the work.
Praising Indian engineers, who have been serving with the United Nations Mission (UNMISS) in conflict-affected South Sudan, Munybuny said the project is a sign of the strong relationship between UNMISS and local authorities and demonstrated their joint commitment to building durable peace in the country. India is the second largest contributor of peacekeepers to UNMISS with nearly 2,400 personnel currently deployed.
In a media release, the Head of UNMISS’ Upper Nile Field Office, Hazel Dewet, said the Malakal-Melut road was critical to the UN Mission’s operations in the area and would improve trade and business between these two important towns. “This is not just an important activity that we are undertaking to ensure that we are able to provide the necessary logistical support to far-flung areas where UNMISS is based, be it Melut, or Renk or Bunj, but it is also the beginning of providing some important repair work on a road that brings together families and communities,” she said.