Visiting Egyptian Foreign Minister Donates Supplies to National Dialogue
H.E Samey Shoukry, the Foreign Minister of the Arab Republic of Egypt, paid a one-day visit to South Sudan today.
Despite running on a tight schedule, the FM visited the National Dialogue premises, held a brief session with the ND leadership and donated office supplies to the Steering Committee for its operations.
Accompanied by a high-level delegation of diplomats, the Egyptian Foreign Minister met with the National Dialogue Leadership members and leaders of sub-committees of the Steering Committee.
National Dialogue Steering Committee Co-Chair Hon. Angelo Beda, Deputy Co-chair, Hon. Gabriel Yoal, Rapporteur, Hon. Bona Malwal and Deputy Rapporteur Dr. Francis Deng, among others, attended the meeting.
The Arab Republic’s top diplomat promised to extend “whatever assistance” to the National Dialogue as a sign of importance that the country attaches to the peace-making initiative. Egypt desires to see to it that the National Dialogue “ends political and military strife [in South Sudan] and achieves the best interest of all,” he said.
The FM also pledged to support the National Dialogue in many areas, including:
- Capacity building
- Sharing of experience on political transitions and reforms
- Policy formulation
- Deployment of personnel or advisors to the ND
In his speech, the Co-Chair Hon. Angelo Beda welcomed his guests to Freedom Hall and thanked Egypt for “assistance and help to the National Dialogue in particular and South Sudan in general.”
The Co-Chair briefed the incoming Foreign Minister about hurdles that the process has overcome from the start, including “skepticism from inside and the international community.” He also said that the dialogue tried to be inclusive from the beginning as leaders of the Steering Committee reached out to important stakeholders inside and outside the country’s borders.
In a brief statement at the reception of H.E Shoukry to the National Dialogue Leadership VIP Lounge, Hon. Bona lauded the two countries’ deep historical links. A former Minister of Information for Sudan, Hon. Bona cited a story of a successful Egyptian scholarship program that placed over 1500 South Sudanese high school students in Egyptian colleges and universities during his tenure as indicative of Cairo’s longstanding support and friendship to the people of the new nation.
In his final remarks at the meeting, H.E Shoukry appreciated the ties between his country and South Sudan. He tried to allay fears that Egypt interests wouldn’t trump those of South Sudan. He stressed that his country seeks a relationship of ‘mutual benefit and mutual respect and understanding’ with the new nation.
He added that Cairo’s foreign policy is predicated at “not adversely affecting regional and international cooperation or solidarity.”
Following the formal reception at the VIP Lounge, the Foreign Minister was escorted with his delegation to the hall where office supplies and donations earmarked for the National Dialogue Steering Committee were to be unveiled before the press.
Hon. Mary Bicensio Wani, the ND Focal Point for Egypt, read out the received items.
According to her, the supplies include 50 computers, 10 black and white printers, two photocopiers; 15 inks, photocopy parts, two projectors, one digital camera, two white boards and five switchers.