The National government through the Ministry of Cabinet Affairs has approved over 850 Million South Sudanese Pounds to facilitate and operate the five public universities.

Speaking to the press yesterday, the Minister of ICT & Postal Service who is also the government spokesperson, Michael Makuei Lueth said that the cabinet has approved the budget for the Ministry of Higher Education to facilitate the reopening of the five public universities and cater for the period of the Covid-19.

“The Minister of Higher Education of Science and Technology made a presentation on how best they can reopen the public universities. He presented a budget of 853,544,178 South Sudanese Pounds, a budget to facilitate the five universities and to care for the period of the Covid-19. Meaning that the students who were in the same classes will be divided to keep a social distance and enable them to operate so that we don’t lose this academic year,” Makuei said.

“This budget was approved as presented by the Minister of Higher Education and the Ministry of Finance is directed to make the payments chargeable against the Covid-19 pandemic budget. And when we talk of public universities, we are talking of the government universities and this does not mean that the private universities should not also reopen but they need to cope and implement the same plans and projects that are being planned for the public universities,” he added.

Makuei stressed that the contractors and teachers whose arrears were not yet paid will soon be looked into and should be partly paid if not at once.

“For the contractors who were not paid and the teachers whose salaries are unpaid should be partly paid so that their universities can start in a better way,” he said.

Last year, all the universities were closed down due to the coronavirus pandemic, which was first recorded in South Sudan in April, 2020.