UN and Africa: focus on South Africa, DR Congo and South Sudan

State-sponsored xenophobia “unacceptable”: South African Minister says

State-sponsored xenophobia against migrants and refugees is unacceptable and must be addressed by the international community, South Africa’s Minister in the Presidency responsible for Women has urged. Susan Shabangu made the call to Member States on the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, observed annually on 21 March. In South Africa, it’s marked as Human Rights Day in South Africa and is dedicated this year to the murdered anti-apartheid activist Steve Biko. Jocelyne Sambira has more.

“Only way out” for DR Congo is through a political solution”: UN envoy

The only way of stemming the violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is through political negotiation between government and opposition groups, the UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General said after briefing the Security Council on Tuesday. Maman Sidikou, who is also the head of the UN Mission in the country (MONUSCO), urged both parties to implement the “Accord de la Saint-Sylvestre.” The agreement, signed at the end of December last year, calls for President Joseph Kabila to stand down following elections, which are expected to be held before the end of 2017. The Congolese people want elections to be held soon, Mr Sidikou told Jerome Longue.

Former “Lost Boy” bringing water to South Sudan

Small grassroots organizations can make a “great difference” in the communities where they work, according to the founder of a not-for-profit that is providing villagers in South Sudan with access to water. Salva Dut is a senior adviser with Water for South Sudan which has drilled nearly 300 wells since 2005. The former ‘Lost Boy’ who escaped conflict as a child in the then Sudan by trekking thousands of miles to Ethiopia and later Kenya, is meeting with officials from the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in connection with World Water Day, observed on March 22nd. Mr Dut told Dianne Penn why providing water access is crucial in the world’s youngest country.

Source: United Nations Radio