Kiir back in UAE after two months

Kiir back in UAE after two months
The President Salva Kiir (second last) and First Vice President Dr Riek Machar (third last) at Juba International Airport on Monday before the former traveled to UAE. [Photo Presidential Press Unit]

President Salva Kiir yesterday travelled to Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, on what is said to be a work-related visit.

While in Abu Dhabi, President Kiir is expected to hold bilateral talks during the three-day working visit.

President Kiir was yesterday accompanied by a high-level delegation including the Presidential Advisor on National Security Affairs, Tut Gatluak Manime, the Minister of Presidential Affairs, Dr Barnaba Marial Benjamin, the Director-General of the General Intelligence Bureau, Gen. Simon Yien Makuac, and other government officials.

During the president’s departure from Juba International Airport, his Press Secretary, Ateny Wek Ateny, told the media that he is expected to hold bilateral meetings with UAE leaders.

“The president will hold bilateral meetings with the leaders of the UAE on the areas in which South Sudan and the UAE can further strengthen their relations and cooperation in the areas of mutual interest,” Ateny said.

The President was seen off by the First Vice President, Dr Riek Machar Teny, and other senior government officials.

It is exactly two months since Kiir last visited the UAE. The last time he travelled to the rich Arab nation was on February 18, 2022 to attend the Dubai Expo 2020, where he held bilateral talks with the leaders during his three-day visit to Dubai.

During the February’s visit, the Head of State was accompanied by the Presidential Advisor on Security Affairs, Tut Gatluak; Minister for Presidential Affairs Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin; Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Mayiik Ayii Deng; Minister of Finance and Planning, Agak Achuil Lual; Minister of Culture, Museums, and National Heritage, Nadia Arop Dudi Mayom; Minister of Wildlife Conservation and Tourism, Rizik Zachariah Hassan; and Director General of the General Intelligence Bureau, Simon Yien Makuac.

Upon his return, the national minister of wildlife, conservation, and tourism, Rizik Zachariah Hassan, revealed that the Royal Bureau of Investment had presented a letter of intent to enable UAE businessmen to carry out  for investment in the country.

“President of the Republic met in his office with the Minister of Wild Life, Conservation and Tourism, Hon. Rizik Zachariah Hassan briefed him on the companies from the United Arab Emirates that have shown interest in coming and investing in South Sudan in various fields following the participation of President Salva Kiir Mayardit in Dubai Expo 2020,’’ the statement from the office of the president revealed.

In October 2021, the president visited Cairo to strengthen bilateral relations with Egypt, and the Egyptian President, Abdel Fattah Al Sisi, promised his government’s support in terms of political stability, economic resurrection, and security stabilisation in South Sudan.

The two governments also deliberated on the future of the preceding peace agreements that the two countries had previously signed.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah AL Sisi said that “President Salva Kiir’s visit was a collaboration and, at the same time, presents an opportunity for the two countries to explore new areas of cooperation.” 

There was also a discussion concerning the Memorandum of Understanding signed by Sudan and South Sudan, which included the provision of arable land to Egyptian investors and the establishment of educational training centres in South Sudan.

This MoU was signed by the Egyptian Irrigation Minister, Mohammed Abdel Aati, and his South Sudanese counterpart, Manawa Peter Gatkuoth concerning mitigation of the risks of flooding in the Sudd Swamp in South Sudan.

Al-Sisi promised to transfer Egyptian technocrats to South Sudan to support agriculture and industry.