JUBA, March 19 (Xinhua) -- Chinese oil firm China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) has expanded educational opportunities for South Sudan's children and recently handed over the renovated Paloch Primary School, which is the only learning facility in the entire oil-producing region of Upper Nile state.
Akuma Onymou, the principal of Paloch Primary School, said the learning institution which was established in 2007 had been dilapidated and in poor condition. Onymou said that with the timely support from CNPC, the school's renovation which commenced in 2022 has transformed the learning environment for about 600 teachers and pupils.
"CNPC is delivering opportunities for learning and that shows China is a friendly country," Onymou said during the handover ceremony of the renovated Paloch Primary School held Saturday, adding that the school requires 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 classrooms and offices for teachers is a demonstration of China's goodwill to the people of South Sudan. "In Melut County, as a 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 (Nile), said the oil company has always attached great importance to its social responsibility by actively devoting resources to charitable causes in South Sudan. "CNPC has not only launched cooperation with the 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, pledging to make further efforts and create a better learning environment for the children.
He added the good cooperation and friendship between CNPC and South Sudan's Ministry of Petroleum has enabled both sides to register great achievement in the petroleum upstream sector based on a win-win formula.
Chinese Ambassador to South Sudan Ma Qiang 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 established a strong footprint in the East African nation, 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 talent in the oil industry and donating textbooks to students.