BY DAYO ADESULU
The African Energy Chamber has provided financial and material support to the government of South Sudan to support its efforts to respond to the global Covid-19 pandemic. The number of reported cases in South Sudan is currently nearing 1,000, with 10 deaths already confirmed.
The donation comprises a cash grant and sanitizing products, and represents the long-standing commitment of the Chamber towards the prosperity of South Sudan. It was received in Juba by H.E. Daniel Awow Chuang, Undersecretary at the Ministry of Petroleum, who will, in turn, coordinate the relief activities with the Ministry of Health.
“It is our wish at the Chamber that our contribution will support the laudable ongoing efforts of the government of South Sudan to respond to the pandemic,” stated NJ Ayuk, Executive Chairman at the African Energy Chamber.
“This ongoing pandemic goes beyond the oil sector only and we are calling for much broader support for South Sudan, its workers and its refugees. Short-term relief is critical to the country, especially when it comes to alleviating the economic pain caused by the pandemic and felt throughout the country,” concluded Ayuk
Unfortunately, the ongoing pandemic and the crash in oil prices have slowed the good progress that was made by the peace agreement signed by H.E. President Salva Kiir and Riek Machar. Economic stability and development remain critical to ensuring a successful and long-lasting peace, and the ongoing crisis gives an opportunity to address the fundamental vulnerabilities of the country’s economy. Politicians, energy stakeholders, and the international investment community must come together to think about adopting the right approach to ensure a sustainable recovery post-COVID-19.
In light of the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic across African oil markets, the Chamber has multiplied initiatives and efforts to bring relief and guidance to the industry. Since the start of the pandemic, the Chamber has notably published a Common-sense Energy Agenda of top key policy measures to support the industry, and a set of Guidelines for the Movement and Safety of Oil Workers amidst sustained travel restrictions.