JUBA – At least twenty-nine (29) South Sudanese doctors have received scholarships from Ethiopia, one of the most trusted neighbors of the world’s youngest country, to further their studies in various Ethiopian universities, according to the Ethiopian ambassador to South Sudan Nebil Mehdi.
The doctors will specialize in orthopedics, obstetrics, gynecology, pediatric, urology, radiology and general surgery.
Speaking to journalists during a press conference held at the Ethiopian embassy in Juba on Thursday, Amb. Mehdi said the scholarship grant will strengthen bilateral ties between the two neighboring countries.
“Ethiopia and South Sudan have very strong ties, we need this relation and the foreign policy of Ethiopia gave priority for its neighbors,” Amb. Mehdi told reporters.
“We are ready to work with South Sudan and I assure you that this support for you will continue and it is our responsibility because the priority for any development for Ethiopia in South Sudan is focusing on human resource development,” Amb. Mehdi added.
Amb. Mehdi disclosed that Ethiopian government has so far offered 145 scholarships to South Sudanese students.
“Last year, we sent 145 South Sudanese in undergraduate programs. Ethiopia offered scholarship opportunity for more than 1000 students yearly and the number is increasing. The scholarship started in 2015 and the scholarship given to South Sudanese is very high,” he said.
Samuel Maketh, Deputy Director for Medical Training at Ministry of Health applauded government of Ethiopia for offering scholarship to South Sudanese doctors.
“We have a very good relation with Ethiopia in term of bilateral relation. Ethiopia was the first country to offer our doctors this kind of scholarship,” Maketh said.
“We are only doing 10 percent of the scholarship and Ethiopia government is taking care of tuition fees, accommodation and feeding. We are taking care of their visas, fights and their upkeeps,” Maketh explained.
“This is not the first time we are sending doctors to Ethiopia, we have graduated two batches from different universities in Ethiopia and we have more than 30 students now doing their specialization in different areas at different universities in Ethiopia. This is the fourth batch,” he added.