South Sudan Works to Rebuild Higher Education

Posted by admin on March 23rd, 2011 at 09:01am

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This is the VOA Special English Education Report.

On July ninth, South Sudan becomes the world’s one hundred ninety-third nation. Almost ninety-nine percent of voters last month chose independence from the north.

South Sudan will also be one of the world’s least developed nations. This follows years of war and neglect by the Sudanese government in Khartoum.

South Sudan is about the size of France. Yet it has only fifty kilometers of good roads and almost no public electrical power or other basic systems.

Illiteracy rates are high. There are estimates that more than eighty percent of the population cannot read or write.

There are five universities. Three of them moved their operations to the north during the war. The southern government has brought most of the students back.

Officials estimate that about twenty-five thousand students have registered at the five universities. Classes were supposed to start in April. But the Ministry for Higher Education in the south has now moved the opening date to the middle of May.

The government pays for food and provides housing for students. But higher education minister Joseph Ukel says finding enough space was one reason for the delay.

Another issue is money. The government in Khartoum will pay for the schools until July. Mr. Ukel says the southern government’s proposed budget for this year does not include any money for the universities.

Then there is the problem of teachers.  Almost seventy-five percent of the lecturers are from the north. They are not likely to travel to the south to continue teaching for their schools.

Mr. Ukel says his ministry has asked southern Sudanese teachers outside the country to return.

JOSEPH UKEL: “Their problem was, what do you give us by way of carry-away salaries? That became our problem.”

William Deng heads a commission supervising the return of ninety thousand former fighters to civilian life. He says most of the soldiers who have come out of the southern army need education and training.

WILLIAM DENG: “The skill they only know is soldiering.  Now, you must train them with life skills, such as carpentry, making bricks and also small agriculture, or micro-financing.”

Only four percent of good land in South Sudan is being farmed. Millions of people need food aid to survive. The head of Juba University, Aggrey Abate, says his school can play a big part in training agricultural specialists.

AGGREY ABATE: “Agriculture is a very important area. And we, as an institution, will have the role of producing those who will come out and work in the agricultural sector, in terms of the necessary interventions that need to be made to improve our food security.”

And that’s the VOA Special English Education Report. I’m Bob Doughty.


Contributing: Scott Bobb and Matt Richmond

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Under Education report


  • 1. amazuki  |  March 23rd, 2011 at 9:46 am

    Personally, i think VOA should set up questions which is about the report for listener can answer before they read the official report. This way makes listening more effecient. In addition listener can check their listening skill.

  • 2. huong thi pham  |  March 23rd, 2011 at 3:02 pm

    South Sudan is a very poor country which spent a long time in the internal war and has just been independent from the North. Obviously, the heavy shortage of every aspect is the unavoidable thing, especially essential needs for people like food, medicine.. ..Besides, there are a lot of diffciculties for South Sudan to rebuild and develop its economy such as poor infrastructure, illiteracy, unemployment…The South Sudan government has been deeply aware of the importance of education to train students and people who will have necessary skills in producing agricultural products and handicraft.South sudan need to ask for foreign investment, combine internal and external power to rebulid its country.

  • 3. Hy  |  March 23rd, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    Sudan is an sad story of humanity.The Population is very poor, the country is least developed and people have been shortage of education. the mainly reason was internal war repeated from years to years about a half of century.I hope that with the Independence of the South Sudan newly, the situation in Sudan will be change.The Nation of Sudan North and South as well need more time and effort to rebuilt their countries.

  • 4. hieu  |  March 23rd, 2011 at 8:18 pm

    what do i have to do .my english kill is so bad.are there anyone helpe me?let show me ways to learn

  • 5. hieu  |  March 23rd, 2011 at 9:14 pm

    that’s good idea .i think so too.because maybe many people in here when they read .they can’t understand or somtimes they misunderstand.i think this way can be help more improve english reading skill for all people.

  • 6. billgateneu  |  March 23rd, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    thanks VOA for lesson.
    according it,i understand about this country.
    it has met very difficultly such as society, manpower and especailly education.
    t think whole our world must act together to help this country!
    and finally, thanks for the lesson!

  • 7. sea  |  March 23rd, 2011 at 9:55 pm

    This is a good lesson. Thanks admin very much!!!!! I knew nghetienganh .com for a short time , But now, i feel my skills are better.Thank you again!!!!! hi hi…

  • 8. huong thi pham  |  March 24th, 2011 at 8:52 am

    Rreading some war information in Libya, I feel indignant before the crime of the invasive Western countries to Libyan civilian. A wave of indignation is spreading in over the world.The internal war in Sudan lasted about half a century without having any intervention of foreign countries. Maybe Sudan has no oil mines like Libya, so no one want to inerfere in such a poor country.I hope South Sudan will soon recover and develop.

  • 9. tunglinh  |  March 24th, 2011 at 9:57 am

    i think the activities of south sudan’s gorverment is advantice, rememer in 1946 in VietNam, when the war is going, our national was just established, there were many difficult problem, but one of them is illiracy, and our uncle Ho said a stupid national is a weak natiaonal, and a program to teach people was opened. I support the effort of South Sudan, and wish they will be sucess.

  • 10. Quiteriver  |  March 24th, 2011 at 12:36 pm

    no idea about this problem.just wish people all over of the world would always be living in peace.

  • 11. Quiteriver  |  March 24th, 2011 at 6:33 pm

    Live modestly, save for environmental protection.a title tuoi tre ‘s news. what do you think about?

  • 12. le van binh  |  March 25th, 2011 at 3:57 am

    I see illiteracy of Sudan the sam Vietnam in 1945. However, Vietnam passed and rubed out it. I hope Sudan will solve this problem like Vietnam.

  • 13. datypro  |  March 25th, 2011 at 7:55 am


  • 14. sea  |  March 25th, 2011 at 9:55 am

    I think Sudan is not same VietNam

  • 15. quiteriver  |  March 25th, 2011 at 9:03 pm

    i think the same your idea

  • 16. Hong Hoa  |  March 26th, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    Accoding the report, it find that education play an important role. To make a country more amd more developing, the govement has to invest for education. for example, North Sudan pay highly attention to decrease the rate of illeture. i hope that North Sudan will successful in near future.

  • 17. Mai Thanh  |  March 27th, 2011 at 12:17 am

    Through the article, I see that South Sudan is very poor country, it is one of the least developed nations in the world. South Sudan has just been separated from the North. It is lack of everything from infrastructure to education. It has to rebuild from starting. The causes of this problem are years of war and the neglect by the Sudanese government in Khartoum. The shortage of South Sudan is that South Sudan has the same size with France but it has only 50 km of good roads and almost no electrical power for the other basic systems. Beside illiteracy rates are high, estimates more than 80% population can not read or write. It is very terrible. In addition, the other problem is that classes in five universities in South Sudan were supposed to start in April. But the Ministry for Higher Education in the south has moved the opening date to the middle of May. The causes of this delay are finding enough space, money and teachers.Finally is the land, only 4% of good land in South Sudan is being farmed, millions people need food aid to survive. The government of South Sudan is seeking every way to improve this situation like training agricultural specialists and try to meet the facilities for training and studying. Hoping that South Sudan will quickly escape from these difficulties to rise. Hope so.

  • 18. Mai Thanh  |  March 27th, 2011 at 12:29 am

    We wish no war in this world, it is forever peace and happy, and other countries need to help poor countries like South Sudan to escape from difficulties and rising.

  • 19. Water  |  March 27th, 2011 at 11:01 am

    Thanks for admin give us this news. With this lesson, I know there are one hundred ninety three countries in the world. South Sudan is very difficult with everything form work, education, infrastructure, lectures, … Remembered Vietnam in 1945 after obtaining government. The Government with one million of rag money only, and many other things the same South Sudan now but Vietnam can overcome, I think South Sudan is too. Hope that The United Nation and other countries will help South Sudan to pass these difficulty in the earliest time. Best wish for Sudanese.

  • 20. huong lan  |  March 28th, 2011 at 3:05 pm

    I think the Sudanese and their goverment have to do their best to rebuild their country. it takes them so much time, money and strength to do this. Let’s pray for them to have a better life soon.

  • 21. trang  |  March 29th, 2011 at 10:01 am

    what a pity! i don’t understand.hjhj

  • 22. Sang  |  April 7th, 2011 at 7:36 pm

    i think VOA should be have many pictures about many field such as : economics , health and so on. when i listen a lession , i like voice in VOA because it helps me improve my listening skill and my voice .

  • 23. himlan  |  May 10th, 2011 at 2:29 pm

    I don’t know much obout this country.Perhaps, this cuontry needs more help from the World

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