On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, we extend our best wishes to the people of the Republic of South Sudan on the second anniversary of your independence.
I will never forget the moment I shared with the people of South Sudan as the world witnessed the birth of a new nation. I saw long lines of people waiting for hours, reveling in the privilege of voting for their freedom. When I mentioned to some voters the need to be patient and remain in line despite the delays, they said we have waited 55 years, we can wait a few more hours.
Today, their wait is over and South Sudan is an independent nation. But we all know that much work remains to be done. Elections alone don’t create working democracies or provide the guarantees of good governance that free people rightfully demand. We have an obligation to do more to make sure that we’ve helped free people give birth to a lasting and successful nation.
The vision that South Sudan laid out for itself two years ago requires a sustained commitment to democracy and good governance, justice and accountability, and respect for the rule of law and the human rights of all of South Sudan’s people. We support South Sudan’s efforts to institute governmental reform at all levels, resolve outstanding conflicts, promote economic growth, and ensure peace and stability.
The United States remains committed to helping South Sudan build a more prosperous, inclusive, and democratic society – one that is at peace internally and with its neighbors. On the second anniversary of your nation’s independence, the journey continues and we stand ready to help support economic prosperity, democratic governance, and respect for human rights in South Sudan for years to come.