“Unbearable” was how Bishop Arkanjelo Wani described the situation in south sudan and neighbouring Uganda after recent visits to Bidi Bidi and Lamor refugee settlement camps. Bishop Arkanjelo’s sentiments were warranted following horrific stories of families opting to make the journey back to South Sudan, with all apparent dangers, than lose their dignity as they starve inside the camps. Uganda has been a host country for refugees from South Sudan for decades. The current hostilities in South Sudan Equatorial and Barel Ghazal regions has resulted in another wave of refugees currently settling in the refugee camps of West Nile region and Western Uganda (specifically in Arua, Moyo and Adjumani Districts).
The Refugee crisis in Uganda is reported to be the World’s fastest growing refugee crisis. Uganda hosts an estimated 898,000 refugees from South Sudan, with an average daily inflow of 3000 refugees (UNHCR, 2017). Reports of food rations being halved and a seemingly evitable healthcare collapse looming with 1 health center serving close to 11,000 people.
Regional church leaders continue to urge South Sudan key antagonists to come back to their senses to prevent further deaths.
The Evangelical Alliance of South Sudan (EASS) leadership have been crisscrossing the region in a joint initiative (Church leaders Mediation Initiative) with other church traditions aimed at showing solidarity with the affected. These visits provide an opportunity for pastors to provide messages of hope, be actively involved in building schools and most importantly carry out discipleship programs. Their plea to the evangelical community in Africa is to both pray that the conflict will come to an end and also mobilize financial or emergency food support for the Alliance.