It is time to prioritise sustainable development

The first national economic conference that concluded in Juba last Saturday came up with several good resolutions that aimed to revive the economy of the country.

The resolutions were grouped into three government clusters, among them governance, service and economic clusters.

However, the conference failed to emphasise the need for Non-Governmental Organizations to change their approach from humanitarian assistance to development activities.

It is clear that it is the primary responsibility of the government to provide for the needs of its citizens and the NGOs can only supplement the effort of the government.

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Unfortunately, there are hundreds of national and international NGOs that are doing similar activities. Some have started operating in the country since the establishment of the government in 2005 but little has been realised.

The government will be aiming to transform the economy of the country through recommendations of the economic conference.

It is important for the development partners to join the government in this journey for economic revival.

They can support the local communities through agribusiness by transforming the local farmers from subsistence to commercialized farming. It is only through commercialised agriculture that we can transform the economy of this country.

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There is a need to stop the syndrome of depending on food relief because this is proven not reliable. It instead makes the citizens poorer and food insecure.

So, it is important for the government to set its agenda for the development partners on what it expects to be done to the citizens to make them more resilient.

Development partners such as the African Development Bank can support local farmers through other avenues such as the cooperative movement. It is time to shift from prioritising humanitarian aid to sustainable growth that can benefit the next generation.

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