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James Kon Kiir disabled Journalist working for Awerbei FM in Northern Bahr El Ghazal [Photo credit by Charles Kay]

Inside life of  a disabled journalist in South Sudan

James Kon Kiir a disabled Journalist working for Awerbei FM in Northern Bahr El Ghazal state ventured into Journalism in 2013 as trainee and volunteer.

He told The Juba Echo how he has overcome stereo types associated to people living with disabilities (PLWDs) to become one of the most respected media personalities in the State.

Kon who currently works as radio programmer and generator technician at Awerbei, said one of the litmus test he faced in his career was when he managed to interview Tong Aken Ngor, the Governor of Northern Bhar El Ghazal State.

He disclosed that Ngor got delighted after the incident was aired on radio that encouraged Kon to aim for the sky and always maintain high standards in his work.

Kon who often is seen on wheelchair bicycle moving to cover news events, said disability is not inability a “catch phrase” always used to emphasize the ability of PLWDs.

“Disability is not inability, I will do what other Journalists in the country do, and I will not feel disappointed regardless of challenges I face in media,” said Kiir.

“I have been discriminated and overlooked by officials but I insist on doing my journalistic work despite all these challenges,” he added.

Kon was among participants who attended a three-day training on peace Journalism organized by COMNETSS and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Juba last week.

“Radio is not like TV where people watch you live broadcasting, but in radio listeners will enjoy your voice regardless of who you are,” he said.

Kon said most listeners of Awerbei FM are often surprised whenever they meet him outside the news room moving with support of his wheelchair bicycle.

 He said most them are surprised to see him humble and down to earth despite the celebrity status accorded to him by people in Northern Bahr El Ghazal State.

Kon is keen to use his success to encourage other people living with disabilities to confront challenges they face in society.

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