The role of humanitarian organizations in nation building: A case of selected humanitarian agencies in Jubek State, South Sudan
OGUTU, WYCLIFF OMONDI
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The conflicts in South Sudan have brought more suffering and agony to the citizens than the peace they hoped for. This conflict has resulted to destruction of property, low investment in the country, unemployment and poverty. This has led to the establishment of numerous humanitarian organizations with the primary aim of nation building. This study looked at the role these humanitarian organizations play in nation building with reference to Catholic Organization for Relief and Development Aid (CORDAID), Community Empowerment for Progress Organization (CEPO) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Jubek State. The study focused on the projects used by these organizations in nation building, how humanitarian organizations provide forums for conflicting communities and the ways humanitarian organizations can explore to strengthen their roles in nation building in Jubek State. The study is underpinned on peace building theory. The study adopted exploratory research design to depict the study respondents in an accurate way. The study targeted 494 people from UNDP, CORDAID, CEPO staff and members of the community. Out of 494, 149 formed part of the study sample. The sampling method that was used for this study was purposive sampling method. The study then used questionnaires and interview guide as the data collection instruments. The study found that UNDP, CEPO and CORDAID are involved in trauma healing, training, intercommunity peace talks, funding and promotion of peace clubs and intercommunity peace talks. It was also found that they are involved in provision of basic amenities to conflict victims, empowering communities through training and support on their agricultural activities such as provision of farm equipment’s, construction of cattle deeps and animal health services. The study also found that the existence of the humanitarian organizations in Juba has brought Cohesion and integration of communities who could not see eye to eye, sharing of natural resources like water, and grazing grounds and on nation building through funding of peace programs. On the challenges that UNDP, CEPO and CORDAID are facing in nation building, it was found that insecurity in implementation areas, reduction in funding from donors, high inflation rates, political interference in the country, and poor road networks are the barriers to nation building in Juba. The study found that UNDP, CEPO and CORDAID organize sports activities such as, wrestling to bring communities together. The study concluded that humanitarian organization play a key role in nation building especially in countries recovering from war and politically weak. The study recommends that the role of humanitarian organization need to be revitalized by sensitizing both the community and the government on the role played by these organizations in poverty eradication, emergency response to disasters such as provision of basic needs to the victims of violence. Humanitarian organizations should continue with their activities such as trauma healing, training, intercommunity peace talks, funding and promotion of peace clubs and intercommunity peace talks.
Africa Nazarene University