One of the most popular novels about the 'Lost Boys' of South Sudan is written by Dave Eggers. 'What Is the What' is the autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng, a story based on his real life experience as a South Sudanese 'Lost Boy' and refugee.
Now, according to Talk of Juba 'Former Lost Boy, author and founder of The Valentino Achak Deng Foundation, Valentino Achak Deng, has been appointed the new Minister of Education in his home state of Northern Bahr el Ghazal as caretaker governor Kuel Aguer reshuffles his cabinet.'
I am in no position to guess what lies behind this announcement, but it is a fact that Valentino Achak Deng has worked hard to promote education for children in South Sudan, and in particularly in his home town Marial Bai via the Valentino Achack Deng Foundation.
I guess this announcement hence also represents something new - as Deng has a different background compared many of his new cabinet colleagues?! For one, he is not a traditional South Sudanese politician. Something, in my opinion, South Sudan needs more than ever.
I do hope he will get space and time as a minister to keep up the good work.
Read the comments on Talk of Juba here.
Francine Prose reviews 'What is the What' for New York Times here, an excellent introduction to the book and its circumstances.
'What is the What' - The Autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng: A Novel by Dave Eggers - buy it on Amazon here.