South Sudan president inaugurates Chinese-built modern road
JUBA, Dec. 12 (Xinhua) -- South Sudan President Salva Kiir on Monday commissioned the newly completed 63 kilometers Juba-Terekeka section, which is part of the 392 kilometers Juba-Rumbek highway under construction by China's Shandong Hi-Speed Co. Ltd (SDHS).
The road is designed to link Central Equatoria State which hosts Juba, the capital of South Sudan, with six other states across the vast east African country.
"Fellow citizens of Terekeka, the road we are commissioning today belongs to you, with the completion of this phase one you will be able to move and deliver your goods to and from Juba," Kiir said.
He added that the modern road will benefit farmers and traders through the seamless movement of agricultural commodities and manufactured goods to markets.
Kiir thanked the Chinese government for the cooperation that paved way for the construction of the road.
The SDHS started work on this major highway in November 2019 and currently, the company is working on the 216 kilometers Awerial-Rumbek section.
Ma Qiang, Chinese Ambassador to South Sudan, said the road is a landmark project for Juba's policy of giving priority to developing infrastructure, and also a new symbol of the profound friendship between China and South Sudan. "Since the official commencement of the project in November 2019, Shandong Hi-Speed has overcome many challenges to complete the first section to Terekeka," Ma said.
James Modi, a 45-year-old councilor of Terekeka County, said it used to take motorists nearly five hours to reach the fishing town of Terekeka, adding that it now takes 40 minutes to drive from Juba to Terekeka.
"I think this is the first time for the people of Terekeka to enjoy such a good road like this one. Before, it was very difficult for pregnant women from Terekeka to travel to Juba for delivery and also for the traders who wanted to take fresh fish to Juba," Modi said.