9/30/2015 Radio Show: Dr. Barnaba Benjamin, Foreign Minister, South Sudan; Brandi Bohannon on the Values Voter Summit

International Dialogues Radio, South Sudan, Values Voter Summit

 

On Wsradio.com :http://wsradio.com/093015-2/

Segment 1

South Sudan. New Beginnings. Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin, Foreign Minister of South Sudan and International Cooperation in the Cabinet of South Sudan.

Dr. Barnaba Benjamin was appointed Foreign Minister in 2013. He holds doctoral degrees in Medicine from universities in Cairo and London and studied diplomacy and international relations at the University of South Africa. He has held various positions since 2005 and was Information Minister from 2010-2013. Dr. Benjamin is in New York as member of the South Sudan Delegation to the UN, and  speaks about the history of the “youngest country in the world, which gained independence from Sudan on July 9th, 2011” but has suffered  twenty months of a continuous civil war,  with two million displaced persons with food, water and health aid shortages -despite being a country rich in natural resources. Dr. Benjamin confirms that his country is “larger than France, rich in minerals, water and gifted with natural resources…” He speaks of the  peace agreement ( between enemy factions)  signed  on August 26, 2016, under pressure from the US, UN, African nations etc. Dr. Benjamin  points to the problems that exist in a tribal society, with 64 different ethnic groups- and the importance of diversity and inclusion..”.how a country with  18 political parties can (and must) participate in the democratic process…” It is not an impossible feat, since 98% of the 12 million population voted unanimously for “independence in 2011…” Dr. Benjamin mentions that the “present crisis” does not only  revolve around  the disagreements/fighting between the Dinka and Nuer (majority) ethnic groups (represented by President Salva Kiir  and Vice President Riek Macha, respectively); but also   exists  in ” governance,” infrastructure, education, health,…( 90% of the population lives in rural areas).  Dr. Benjamin calls for the support of the international community in these areas and not for economic sanctions… as a way of “exerting pressure…”

 

Segment 2

South Sudan. The Way Forward. Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin, Foreign Minister of South Sudan and International Cooperation in the Cabinet of South Sudan.

Dr. Barnaba Benjamin speaks of the role played by the United States “which championed independence from Sudan”…and which now, “has a  moral obligation to help builld the nation-state…” (See Articles: http://www.usnews.com/opinion/blogs/peter-roff/2015/08/14/how-obama-is-impeding-peace insouthsudanhttp://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/aug/12/john-fund-south-sudan-like-iran-gets-obama-sanctio/http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/foreign-policy/250888-obama-cant-rush-south-sudan-peace-process)

Dr. Benjamin thanks the various American administrations, both “Republican and Democrat, and human rights organizations which have worked to ensure freedom and dignity for the people of South Sudan…” Dr. Benjamin speaks of the enormous opportunities for American investment, promising a “conflict free” country and assures that his government “is working hard to implement the peace process despite not being satisfied with some of the articles in the Agreement…” Dr. Benjamin asks for “humanitarian assistance,” needed for “sustainable peace…” Dr. Benjamin notes that ” the  people (of SS) elected us leaders (transitional government until 2018)…to start from scratch, shoulder to shoulder…” He  also speaks of the many meetings in New York. held with representatives of the World Bank, IMF, European and  Middle Eastern, countries,” encouraged “to work with a young nation to achieve peace and receive aid for development…” Dr. Benjamin concludes the interview by speaking of the importance of the rule of law, “good governance,” human rights and the recent creation of a “truth and reconciliation” commission. He notes that in upholding the agreement, President Kiir, has began the “demilitarization” of the capital (Juba), withdrawing 17,000 troops. 

 

 

Segment 3

Values Voter Summit. http://www.valuesvotersummit.org/. Brandi Bohannon

Brandi Bohannon, is a southern transplant  (Alabama) to Washington, DC. She  studied international relations at American University in Washington, DC., and  has worked on Capitol Hill, for presidential campaigns and DC think tanks. Her hobbies are “nerding out and local politics.” Her life theme: “fighting for God and Country while clinging to my guns.”  Ms. Bohannon comments on the Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C. from September 24-27, 2015. Ms. Bohannon shares her impressions of the ” very conservative” conference and notes that the issues discussed were those considered “politically incorrect, ” and that the MSM refuses to even “discuss…”  “Overall, the conference was much more diverse than previous years with African Americans, Asians, Latinos, represented…” Ms. Bohannon speaks of the presidential candidates and notes their performances and reactions from the audience… For her, Dr. Ben Carson is the candidate that is not afraid to express his opinions while Donald Trump  adheres to his “rhetoric…” Ms. Bohannon also speaks of Sen. Ted Cruz, who came first on the poll and demonstrated his usual “passionate” side.  

 

Segment 4

Values Voter Summit. http://www.valuesvotersummit.org/. Brandi Bohannon

Ms. Bohannon concludes the interview by speaking of the “uncomfortable”  issues, “abortion, illegal immigration, gay marriage;” difficult and delicate topics….that must be discussed by the potential President (of All Americans)  in an open and sincere manner and show  understanding for   “everyone’s”  sensibilities…

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