Tributes honour Powell’s role in South Sudan freedom
South Sudanese have been paying tributes to Colin Powell, the former US secretary of state who died on Monday at the age of 84.
President Salva Kiir sent a condolence message to US President Joe Biden, Powell’s family and the American people on behalf of the unity government and the people.
He said Powell’s efforts and determination led to the signing to the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, CPA on 9 January 2005, which ended the 21-year civil war in the country.
The agreement between rival Sudan People’s Liberation Movement, SPLM, led by then rebel leader John Garang, and the ruling National Congress Party, NCP, former President Omar al-Bashir paved way for South Sudan’s independence from Sudan.
“I pray that God will give his family, the American people and all those affected by his death the comfort they need, at this time to endure the loss of this national icon.” President Kiir said in a statement read on the national broadcaster on Monday night.
South Sudanese on social media have also been paying tribute to Powell, praising him for the role he played during the negotiations between SPLM and NCP in Kenya.
Apart from witnessing the signing of the agreement in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, Powell also witnessed the declaration of independence of South Sudan in the capital, Juba, on 9 July 2011.
On the same day, Powell also participated in the laying of the foundation stone as they inaugurated the first US embassy in the new country.