Ex-South Sudan petroleum minister “not allowed” to leave the country

South Sudan’s Petroleum Minister Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth speaking during the launching of the resumption of oil production at Unity oilfields in Rubkona county, Unity state (File/Supplied/Nyamilepedia)

June 26th 2019 (Nyamilepedia) – South Sudan’s former petroleum minister, Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth, is not allowed to leave the country until an investigation directed by president Salva Kiir into oil sales is completed, a source at the oil ministry said on Wednesday.

In a Presidential Order issued on Tuesday night, President Salva Kiir decided to set up a committee to investigate how pre-sales of the crude oil was carried out. The committee is mandated to “ascertain the number of pre-sale agreements and companies allocated crude oil on the basis of pre-sale.”

Speaking to the Nyamilepedia on Wednesday afternoon, a petroleum ministry source said minister Gatkuoth has been banned from leaving the country until the committee submit its finding to the office of the president.

“[Ezekiel Lol] Gatkuoth is not allowed to leave this country by the president now. From now, he will remain in the country until the investigation is completed and submitted by those tasked to do it to the office of His Excellency the president,” the source said.

Asked whether the minister has been deprived of his passport, the source said: “I am not sure but that must be the case because when you are not allowed to leave a place or a country, you must not be allowed to carry you passport because you are not going anywhere so why would you need a passport.”

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