A Historic Day’s End
After an immense day of voting in Juba, filled with people celebrating, the polling stations came to close. It was scheduled for 5pm, but with rules stipulating that all those in the queue should have the opportunity to cast their ballot, many centres were still inking voters’ fingers much later.
Many believed that vast numbers of people did not realise that they could vote throughout the entire week — the 9th of January had become so symbolic in the talk of freedom. Or perhaps people’s enthusiasm meant that the citizens of southern Sudan were so keen to participate on this first day that they would patiently pass their day queuing under the unforgiving Sudanese sun.
In any case, when the ballot boxes were closed with their numbered seals, the translucent plastic urns were full of folded slips bearing the stamp of the Southern Sudan Referendum Commission.
For us, it means a long night of editing & filing images, rehydrating & somehow digesting what we have witnessed this nation undertake today. This is history.