South Sudan: “It is Not a Government, It is a Looting Machine, It is a Den of Thieves”
May 14, 2018(Nyamilepedia) — Speaking to media, John Prendergast, an American human rights activist, former Director for African Affairs at the National Security Council, author and the founding Director of the Enough Project, blasted on South Sudan’s struggling regime of President Salva Kiir.
Prendergast strongly believes that South Sudan has no functioning government but a den of thieves running a kleptocracy and looting the resources of the country.
“It’s not a government that builds infrastructure, it’s not a government that provides security and adjudicates disputes. It’s a looting machine. It’s a kleptocracy. It’s a den of thieves.”John Prendergast said in his latest interview.
Asked by the NPR’s Lulu Garcia-Navarro to update their listeners on South Sudan’s situation right now, Prendergast had this to say:
“All the worst sort of manifestations of war are unfolding today in South Sudan – you know, recruitment of child soldiers, rape as an instrument of conflict and war, the pushing – the displacement of people – the forced displacement of people – you would call ethnic cleansing in many parts of the country – leading to the deterioration of humanitarian conditions to the point of near famine.” Said John Prendergast,
Despite the worst sort of manifestations that are unfolding in South Sudan, John Prendergast defended the American’s government position to cut off humanitarian assistance given that there is no legitimate government in the world’s youngest nation.
“Well, I think, you know, at this point, the feeling is that this is a government that’s lost all of its legitimacy. This is a government that no longer, really – it can be conceived of in conventional political terms. This is not a government that supplies services to its people.” Prendergast Continued.
The Enough Project Director calls on the American government and allies to go after South Sudan’s officials, who have looted the country and bought mansions in developed and developing countries such as Australia, Canada, USA, Kenya, Sudan and Uganda while leaving their own citizens starving as refugees in their own country.
“We need to help create a consequence. The United States has the tools, the financial tools to go after the leaders of South Sudan and freeze their assets and seize all of the kind of money that they’ve stolen, put into banks, put into real estate, beautiful houses around the world, put into shell companies. Go after that money and really create a serious financial consequence for the looting and destruction of their state.”
Prendergast testified before the U.S. House of Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations, in a hearing on “Protecting Civil Society, Faith-Based Actors, and Political Speech in Sub-Saharan Africa” last Wednesday, May 9th, 2018.
In his testimony, Prendergast urged the use of robust financial tools to address mass corruption underlying war, atrocities, and human rights abuses in Sub-Saharan Africa.
In collaboration with George Clooney, an American actor, director, producer, screenwriter, activist, businessman and philanthropist, the Enough Project Director produced a Sentry Report that detailed corruption among other ill-practices in South Sudan government last year.
The Sentry Report captured media attention and sparked investigations that has led to one corruption case pending trial in Australia. The case involves South Sudan’s former Chief of General Staff, Gen. James Hoth Mai, whose family lived on welfare for years, but suddenly afford to pay off a luxurious $1.5 million mansion in Melbourne, Australia.
Many South Sudanese officials including President Salva Kiir have bought luxurious properties outside the country and registered them under their children’s names and other relatives.
South Sudan’s conflict, which broke out in December 2013, continue to escalate despite attempts by the region and members of the international community to end it.
Latest IGAD Consultation reports show that the warring parties still have big gaps to bridge if ever they will compromise to work together to restore peace and stability in their country.
Despite tough threats of sanctions or asset freeze from the TROIKA and allies, South Sudan leaders have adamantly continued to pursue military solutions and war continue to escalate.
It leaves doubts whether the American government and allies will ever walk the talk and delivers!