Durable peace and unity in diversity key takeaways from joyful UNMISS concert in Maridi
WESTERN EQUATORIA – Last weekend, the sound of music travelled far and wide in Maridi, Western Equatoria, thanks to a peace concert by the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS).
The UN Peacekeeping mission’s in-house band—the Flamingoes—fired up an energetic crowd, asking them to ponder on the musical event’s theme – ‘Peace Begins With Me.’
Organized in partnership with the state Ministry of Peace Building, it was a special event filled with positive messages on unity in diversity, forgiveness, and reconciliation to make durable peace a reality for South Sudanese.
Local artists and traditional dancers enthralled concert goers with colorful performances.
Hundreds of people from villages of Maridi county and government officials swayed to catchy tunes.
For 20-year-old Afia Jenet, it was a memorable performance.
“I am very happy to see everybody dancing freely and enjoying the moment. As I’m joining in the revelry, it truly feels that peace has arrived among us,” she stated.
Similar expressions of joy came from Sarah Barnet Gugu, a women’s representative in Maridi, who encouraged women and girls to become peacebuilders.
“We have our own network as women where we discuss the specific role women peacebuilders play in ensuring amity at the grassroots. This forum unites us and is important for social cohesion. People of Maridi have suffered enough from being divided. It is time we come together for a more prosperous future,” she averred.
For his part, Robert Roba, a Political Affairs Officer with UNMISS, appreciated Maridi communities for their warmth and encouraged them to continue existing harmoniously.
“UNMISS will continue supporting the people of Maridi and, in turn, we request you to let peace begin in your hearts,” he urged.
The heartwarming event also included quizzes with prizes for winners.