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Chinese Ambassador Ma Qiang (Center) together with CNPC officials attend the handover of the renovated Paloch primary school in Melut County

Chinese oil firm transforms education fortunes of communities in Upper Nile State

Chinese oil firm China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) has transformed education fortunes of school going children by handing over the fully renovated Paloch primary school, which is the only school in the entire oil -producing region of Upper Nile state in South Sudan.

Akuma Onymou, head master of Paloch primary school said the school established in 2007 had been dilapidated and in poor condition for learning.

Adding that with the timely support from CNPC, the school renovation which commenced in 2022 has transformed learning conditions for about 600 teachers and learners.

“CNPC is delivering services and that shows China is a friendly country,” Onymou said during the handover ceremony held on Saturday in Paloch.

Onymou also said that the school needs more teachers and a road to facilitate movement of learners during the rainy season.

Deng Jok Angok, the commissioner of Melut County said the renovation of the eight class rooms and offices for teachers is demonstration of China’s goodwill to the people of South Sudan.

“In Melut County, as government we are responsible for delivering services to our people, but China is also contributing much, the services the community has gotten shows China is delivering,” Angok said.

 Lu Jiangbo, President of CNPC speaks during the handover ceremony of Paloch primary school.

Lu Jiangbo, President of CNPC said the oil company has always attached great importance to its social responsibility by actively devoting to charitable activities in South Sudan.

“CNPC has not only launched cooperation with South Sudan government in terms of crude oil exploration and development by investing in Dar Petroleum Operating Company (DPOC) and Greater Pioneer Operating Company (GPOC) with other foreign partners, but always attached great importance to its social responsibility,” Lu said.

“I would like to announce today, that we will continue to make further efforts to improve the condition of students’ classroom and teacher’s office, so as to create better learning environment for the children here,” he added.

Lu said the good cooperation and friendship between CNPC and South Sudan’s ministry of petroleum has enabled the two sides to register great achievement in the petroleum upstream sector based on win-win situation.

In 2015, CNPC donated 15,000 textbooks for seven local primary schools in Melut County, including Paloch primary school.

Ma Qiang, Chinese Ambassador to South Sudan said that over the past 12 years of the diplomatic relationship between China and South Sudan, CNPC in close collaboration with the South Sudanese government, has rooted in South Sudan, and shared weal and woe with its people.

“Faced with major challenges such as armed conflicts, oil price fluctuations, the COVID-19 pandemic, and floods, CNPC has always insisted on oilfield production, invested huge sums of money to restore production facilities, and made important contributions to the recovery and development of the oil industry of South Sudan,” Ma said.

He said CNPC has also actively fulfilled its corporate social responsibility, through endeavors including building the Friendship Hospital in Paloch Oilfield, the Juba No.3 Protection of Civilians (POC) site, and the University of Juba E-classroom, and funding for the training of professional talents in the oil industry and donating textbooks to students.

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