Caritas Official in South Sudan Urges Youth to “be ambassadors of peace” at Grassroots

Credit: Wau Diocese

There is need for young people in South Sudan to “be ambassadors of peace” within their respective local communities, the Caritas Coordinator of the country’s Catholic Diocese of Wau has said.

Speaking at the end of a two-day workshop on Wednesday, December 7, Luka Lawrence Ndenge said youth in South Sudan can be peace envoys by spearheading dialogue and reconciliation initiatives for peaceful coexistence. 

“Be ambassadors of peaceful and good governance in communities in South Sudan,” Mr. Ndenge said.

He called upon young people in the world’s youngest nation to take ownership of peacebuilding and reconciliation initiatives at the grassroots as a way of addressing and even curbing violent conflicts. 

The official of Caritas in South Sudan emphasized the need for young people in the East-Central African nation to take up leadership roles, and when they do, to be “exemplary leaders” who identify steps to “mitigate and reverse cycles of hatred and violence in communities.”


“There are many cases of conflict within our communities; it’s your role as young people to go and bring them to an end,” he told the 50 youth who were drawn from the Parishes of Wau Diocese on the last of the two-day training that targeted Pastoral Agents in the South Sudanese Diocese.

Mr. Ndenge challenged the South Sudanese government to support youth-led peace-building initiatives, including the countering of vices such as “hate speech” and violence in local communities.

Violence, tribalism, and hatred have been issues of concern for the Local Ordinary of Wau Diocese.

On November 21, Bishop Matthew Remijio called upon young people to put an end to the tendency to prioritize ethnic identities manifested in what he termed the “virus” of tribalism and nepotism.

In his homily during the Thanksgiving Holy Mass to mark the conclusion of the 2022 Youth Conference, Bishop Remijio said ending tribalism and nepotism will make citizens value each other.

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“We need to end this virus called tribalism and nepotism to help our people, especially the youth, to be together and have equal opportunities with others,” Bishop Remijio said, and added, “Working on reducing the rate of nepotism in the country will help our people, especially the young people to get the jobs they are looking for.”

The South Sudanese member of Comboni Missionaries (MCCJ) said he found it regrettable that nepotism “remains a matter of concern” despite efforts to reduce the vice in the world’s youngest nation. 

The 50-year-old Catholic Bishop who has been at the helm of Wau Diocese since his Episcopal Ordination in January 2021 went on to say, “Nepotism becomes a big problem among our people because some people don’t consider others who are not their relatives to get jobs which make them end up unemployed.”