SOUTH SUDANESE WOMEN CONTRIBUTING TOWARDS NATION-BUILDING AND SHAPING PEACE IN SOUTH SUDAN
Dr. Priscilla Joseph Kuch, born in 1964, is a South Sudanese politician, peace activist and Associate professor of community medicine at the University of Juba’s College of Medicine.
Her contribution towards peace begun in Khartoum; Sudan, where she was a part of the team that established the South Sudan Women Movement; through a Dutch initiative aimed at involving more then southern women in peace activities. The group helped advocate and influence for peace specially the southerners where they worked with nine women groups including political parties with support from international agencies. It would later intervene in the abduction of children who were taken for slavery in South Kordofan with the assistance of UNICEF. This helped to reduce conflict in South Sudan between Masiria and Dinkas.
Following the South Sudan’s conflict that started in December 2013, Dr. Priscilla founded the South Sudan Women Network for Peace which she is also chairperson to date. The network comprises of members from the Government, Opposition and Civil society Organizations. The network’s focus is on women empowerment, dialogue, gender for peace and sustainable development and Implementation of the Peace Agreement. Her desire to see a South Sudan that is vibrant, transparent, accommodative and democratic is the source of her passion for involvement in peace efforts for more than 20 years.
Trained as a medic with a Bachelors in Medicine and Surgery as well as Masters in Community Medicine, she has served South Sudan’s post-independence government first as Minister without portfolio in the office of the president (2010-2011) and Deputy minister of Gender, Child and Social welfare (2011-2013).
Dr. Priscilla also serves as a board member and chairperson of several institutions including but not limited to South Sudan Pension Fund, UN Women Civil Society Advisory Committee, and South Sudan Peace Task- Force on Inclusive Security. She remains an active member of the ruling Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM).