The official results of South Sudan’s referendum on independence were announced and accepted yesterday evening in the northern capitol, Khartoum.
South Sudan has voted for independence with a nearly unanimous 99%, and it will become the world’s newest nation on July 9, 2011.
There is great joy in Juba today at the official announcement of the results. People huddled around radios and televisions at 7pm last night to listen to the official ceremony. But even as people congratulate each other today, conversations turn to the future. For so long the focus has been January 9, and now the focus has shifted to the long future ahead, nationhood, how to address the problems of insecurity and under-development that have plagued South Sudan in the past. The people of South Sudan recognize the many challenges ahead but have great hope and great vision for what their nation will become.