30 April 2018 | An Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) worker was killed on Tuesday, April 24, in Tali County, South Sudan. Agoyo Robert was working for ADRA South Sudan’s Health Pooled Fund (HPF) project although he was off-duty when his vehicle was attacked by gunmen.

According to an ADRA press release, the aid worker was traveling back from the country’s capital, Juba, after visiting his wife who was in hospital due to labor complications. Others in Agoyo’s vehicle were also injured.

“Our ADRA family around the world is deeply saddened by the senseless killing of our colleague. During this terrible tragedy, we lift in prayer his family, in particular his wife, and express our heartfelt condolences,” said Jonathan Duffy, president of ADRA International. “Each day, our colleague worked tirelessly in humble service to make life better for so many others. We will never forget his commitment and service to the people of South Sudan.”

Duffy added that, “This tragedy underscores the tremendous courage and commitment of our staff who face constant challenges in some of the toughest places in the world as they selflessly work to give hope and better opportunities to so many families.”

A statement from ADRA says that the organization, “condemns this attack in the strongest possible terms. Everyone at ADRA is shocked and appalled at the violence of this attack toward its staff and those who were injured. ADRA is taking every precaution possible to ensure that staff on the ground remain safe.”

Relief workers in South Sudan face very dangerous conditions. ADRA has been forced to withhold service to the area in which the Health Pooled Project is being implemented.

At least 98 aid workers – the majority South Sudanese – have been killed in South Sudan since 2013. In an unrelated incident, ten relief workers traveling in South Sudan were abducted by an armed group on April 26.

According to ADRA, the Health Pooled Fund project, funded by ADRA-UK, serves 209,902 community members in the Terekeka county. The project strengthens the capacity of 40 health centers in South Sudan, providing better access to health services, especially for women, children and the vulnerable.

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