UoJ bestows Honorary Degree on Late PeaceMaker, Bishop Paride Taban

University of Juba on Saturday bestowed an honorary Degree on late Bishop Paride Taban in acknowledgement and appreciation of his service as a peace ambassador and his contribution to South Sudan.

This was at the 25th Convocation of the University in which 4,741 graduands were graduated at Dr. John Garang Mausoleum on Saturday, 2nd of December, 2023.

It’s the second award conferred to him just one month after his demise, after he was named the 2023 Opus Prize Laureate for his peacebuilding efforts by a United State University on November 10th.

Bishop Taban, the pioneer Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Torit and the first leader of the New Sudan Council of Churches (NSCC) died on 1 November in Nairobi following a long illness as announced by the Catholic Diocese of Torit. He was 87 years old.

He was laid to rest at St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Torit, Eastern Equatoria.

Born in 1936, Bishop Taban grew up in the midst of wars and bitter suffering in Sudan, He dedicated his life to mediating peace between different political and ethnic groups.

The late Bishop Taban was ordained priest on 24 May 1964. He served as the auxiliary bishop of Juba from 28 January 1980. At 47 years, he was appointed pioneer Bishop of Torit, South Sudan, on 2 July 1983, a position he held till 7 February, 2004.

He was also sent to Rwanda by the Pope in the aftermath of the 1994 genocide for reconciliation efforts.

Bishop received numerous awards including the Sergio Vieira de Mello Peace Prize from the UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon in 2013 for his work at the Holy Trinity Peace Village in Kuron.

He also received the Hubert Walter Award for Reconciliation and interfaith cooperation from the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby in 2017 for co-founding the ecumenical New Sudan Council of Churches.

Bishop Taban received the freedom of Worship Award on May 16th, 2018 for his extraordinary efforts toward bringing peace to war torn South Sudan.

The four freedoms award is one of the most prestigious awards recognizing the work of defending fundamental human rights. Earlier recipients include Nelson Mandela, Bishop Desmond Tutu and Angela Merkel.

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