Juba: UN Assistant Secretary-General, UNDP Assistant Administrator for Crisis Response, Izumi Nakamitsu, inaugurated a forty-eight stall community market in Mingkaman, Lakes state.
The market project followed a UNDP joint assessment and consultation with the internally displaced persons (IDPs), host community and county leadership in Mingkaman, in order to support early economic recovery. The project is also aimed at community-based approaches that mitigate conflict between IDPs and the host communities. Constructed by the community with support from UNDP in partnership with Nile Hope, the market provides space for 192 trader stalls and promotes economic empowerment and early recovery in livelihoods for the community.
“UNDP promotes inclusive development through the creation of employment opportunities to restore livelihoods by building robust infrastructure at the community level. The market is a good example of what we strive to achieve based on a joint assessment of community needs,” Ms. Nakamitsu said.
Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General, Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, Mr. Toby Lanzer, who accompanied Ms. Nakamitsu, remarked: “The main idea behind this project is to support an environment for micro-enterprises to flourish, strengthening local production and exchange that can ultimately contribute to household incomes and generate self-employment”. He went on to add “the project has provided income to meet supplementary household needs and build small savings, to start micro-enterprises”.
The market construction created emergency employment for 182 residents over a period of three months, and is intended to be self-sustaining through income generated from user fees for maintenance, renovation, and future expansion. A local steering committee, with representation from the IDPs and the host community, is now in place to manage the market.
The Awerial County Commissioner, Deny Tong added, “We are very pleased to have the market constructed by UNDP in Mingkaman. Scarcity of opportunities lies at the root of many challenges facing the IDPs and host community living in Awerial County. Our economy continues to shrink and hence cannot provide all the jobs and opportunities that the IDPs need. This market will help both the people of Awerial County and IDPs to face the current economic difficulties.”
The project is funded with support from the Governments of the Netherlands, Japan, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. UNDP aims to expand and scale-up livelihoods and income generation efforts to assist IDPs and host communities to begin the process of rebuilding their lives on a sustainable basis.
Source: United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)