By Ngor Arol Garang
June 30 , 2011 (JUBA) – The Government of South Sudan (GoSS) on issued an order explaining that the term “Excellency” should only be used for the president and head of foreign missions and embassies.
This comes following debates over the extensive use Excellency by officials in South Sudan’s civil service making it difficult to know who fits the appropriate use of the term.
Cirino Hiteng, the minister in the office for the president of GoSS said on Thursday that the government accepts and encourages the use of appropriate functional and academic titles and limits the use of “Excellency” to only the president and heads of foreign missions and embassies.
“We have sent out a circulation to all heads of departments and offices to accept and encourage the immediate use of appropriate titles. This is meant to conform to the international protocol on the use of Excellency”, explained the minister.
The statement entitled “the use of Excellency in the Republic of South Sudan” informs all government offices and the general public that from 9 July 2011, the day of South Sudan’s independence, the use of the word “Excellency” will be limited to the President.
“Only the President of the Republic of South Sudan will be addressed by this title and all other officials will be addressed by their appropriate titles. The change is meant to conform to the international protocol on the use of ’Excellency’”, reads part of the statement seen by Sudan Tribune.
“The decision made by the government to limit the use of ’Excellency’ is encouraging move indeed. The public was not comfortable with the use of Excellency in the public address”, said Deng Akuei Ajou, a senior member of the GoSS.
“I have sometimes found myself being addressed with this title though I do not feel comfortable with it, for I am just government employee appointed under a civil service category despite seniority. I found it was unacceptable. And I am glad that the government has realised the need to conform to international standards”, said Ajou.