Yambio — As southern Sudan awaits the final results from the recently-concluded referendum on independence, women's institutions in Western Equatoria State headed by the advisor on gender and HIV/AIDS affairs Madam Mary Biba visited the state governor to congratulate him on the success of the conduct of the referendum in the state.
At a briefing to the governor, Mary Biba said, they have come as women of the state "to appreciate the governor for his tireless efforts to attain the success of the referendum in Western Equatoria State."
During the referendum voting day, women in Western Equatoria formed large queues to cast their votes and exit polls showed huge number of them showed support for the secession of Sudan's southern region.
Biba disclosed that "as women form the majority in the community, they will stand firm with the current elected government for the development of the state."
"We have women in the ministries as ministers, advisors, directors, and deputy directors, so I think some of the women are trying also to do same work men are doing, and we hope with this success you will not forget us" Biba told the state governor.
However, she said their problem as women is always lack of education, "we hope that there will be special consideration for girls' education, those who will replace these women, we are not going to stay there for long, we are going out we need people to replace us special girls' education."
According to state referendum high committee 110,060 of the 218,635 registered the voters in the state were women, constituting 50.6%.
In response the governor appreciated their coming calling it "as success for every woman in Western Equatoria state since they are the majority."
Bakosoro said, as the governor of the state, he would battle the insecurity caused by the presence of Ugandan rebel movement the Lord's Resistance Army.
He also said that "poverty [is] the biggest challenge and fight for the unity of the people of Western Equatoria state."
Despite defeating a female governor in last year's election, Bakosoro continue favorable rate among women in the state.
"In this new era of South Sudan, women as the unifying factor of the community must open their eyes to be firm to work in collaboration with men" Bakosoro said.
The governor urged the women to organize themselves and find prominent leaders ready for the reorganization of the government after the announcement of referendum results.
He stressed that "Western Equatoria state will never be the same again," citing that he will "change the mind of every citizen of the state to be focused and free and just society."
The governor noted that the first Southern Sudanese separatist movement - Anyanya I - started in Nzara Western Equatoria, as well as Torit. In the second Sudanese civil war, he told the meeting that after the SPLA - who now form the army of South Sudan - Western Equatoria state and was never recaptured by northern forces.
The referendum was agreed in a 2005 peace deal, which also gave the south large amounts of autonomy from the north including its own army and regional government.
The governor encouraged the women to take care of their children and send them to School.
With preliminary results showing that the an overwhelming majority of southern Sudanese have voted to secede from the country's Arab dominated north, officials are preparing for the birth of a new nation. But lots issues are still to be agreed before the south becomes Africa's 55th nation including: oil, water, borders, citizenship, and national debt.
Referendum results are due to announced on February 7, 2011.