Profile: Peter Malual and John Ayiik|

February 16, 2011





Peter and John are both working as pharmacy technicians at the University Medical Center in Jackson.  They each had returned to Sudan in 2009 and 2010, and were eager to discuss what going back was like for them.  Both Peter and John expressed great confidence in the CPA (the Comprehensive Peace Agreement) and its efficacy in bringing a “new freedom” and education to those living in Southern Sudan.  They are optimistic about the South’s ability to move forward based upon their commonalities with one another, perceiving this as the South’s greatest strength.  The majority of the South is Christian, while the North is predominantly Muslim.  Peter and John did express concern over the oil that literally divides the country in half, arguing that the band of oil is “unbreakable” and that “it will connect people again,” even after July, when independence is finalized.  They argue that the South has no choice but to share oil with the North due to its lack of infrastructure.  Peter and John explained that despite tribal clashes, the different tribes are able to peacefully work out differences in land disputes; however, the politicians do not want them to because “they have different interests” in mind. 

Living in America has been a challenge for Peter and John, juggling both work and school.  “All we do is school and work; we don’t even have any other fun.”  One organization the refugees have sought as a respite from the burden and monotony of life is the Episcopal Church.  Most Southern Sudanese who are Christian are Episcopalian or Roman Catholic, which plays a vital role in assisting the refugees while in America, both spiritually and physically.