My father was a Commander for the Sudanese People's Liberation Army. He ordered hundreds of children to be taken by force from their families. Parents were becoming upset and as a result, my father sent me out as an example.
Despite the peaceful independence of South Sudan in July 2011, the past year has seen tensions mount, borders close, and oil turn off. Sudan and South Sudan can now turn their attention to their economies and the needs for better governance, development and resolution of internal conflicts.
Many Sudanese people are trapped in the conflict zone, with little access to food, water, shelter, or medical care. However, the government continues to deny international humanitarian organizations full and unfettered access to affected areas.
After years of infighting among different rebel groups and civil society, often confounding outsiders who wanted to help, the various Sudanese factions have unified in their determination to overthrow the NCP.
400 medical students at The University of Juba College of Medicine in South Sudan, a country less than 50 licensed doctors, are living in tents and struggling to feed themselves, yet determined to become the country's first generation of doctors.
South Sudan is the world's newest nation, and while we celebrate the first International Women's Day in independent South Sudan, we must look at how we can address the great challenges faced by women and girls in one of the world's least developed countries.
More than 8 million people in the Republic of South Sudan will celebrate their first Independence Day on July 9. It is only a beginning of a long road for this new nation's people to live up to their potential.