A specially designed Exhibition of documents from the South Sudan National Archives was launched on Thursday 9th of November at the premises of the Transitional National Legislative Assembly (TNLA) of the Republic of South Sudan. The Exhibition is part of the outreach programme developed to connect the people of South Sudan with the historic archival collection under the framework of the UNESCO project "South Sudan National Archives".
The event was launched by Honorable Rebecca Joshua, Minister of Roads and Bridges who substituted Honorable Nadia Arop Dudi, Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports. The Minister commented that the Archives are an important source of learning for everyone and a significant foundation for South Sudanese national identity. In his speech Rt. Hon. Timoth T. Chol, 1st Deputy Speaker of the Transitional National Legislative Assembly drew from his personal interactions with the archival collection, and the hard work that had been invested in order to gather and preserve the current collection of historic documents.
The launch was attended by Ministers, Parliamentarians, Ambassadors and representatives of delegations and UN agencies, in addition to representatives of civil society organizations and media houses. The UNESCO head of office and representative to South Sudan, Mr. Sardar Umar Alam highlighted his appreciation to Norway for their continuous support to this project of national significance and noted the important role archives can play in peace building and reconciliation. The Head of Cooperation from the Norwegian Embassy started by remarking that “It has once been said that a nation without a history is a nation without a future” and later referred to the struggle of creating a future, which is carried out without arms, but with knowledge, wisdom and respect for history.
The visitors had the opportunity to see twenty-one documents presented with explanatory captions as well as the timeline of the efforts invested in the preservation of the documents, from the 1970s to today. The Archives staff acted as the Exhibition’s guides for the occasion, sharing their deep knowledge of the collection and answering questions from the visitors.
The Exhibition is part of the “South Sudan National Archives Project” which is implemented by UNESCO in close partnership with the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, and with the support of Norway. Since the launch of the project in 2012, UNESCO has continuously worked with the Rift Valley Institute with the aim to preserve the collection for future generations of South Sudanese.
For more information, please contact:
Ellen Lekka, Culture Programme Specialist at UNESCO: +211928061247/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Becu Thomas, Culture Programme Officer at UNESCO: +211923571445/ email@example.com