By Solomon Akot Mawien
March 21st 2019 (Nyamilepedia) – On 17th March 2019, Nyamilepedia website published an article titled “The Ongoing Corruption at the Ministry of Finance” where a certain individual accused the National Minister of Finance and Planning, Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit of corruption at the Ministry of Finance and Planning. The article was written by one Achuil A Achuildit who claimed to be a “Senior Official at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning”.
Reading through this article, one is left to wonder as to the motive of this author who is simply full of malice, vindictiveness and hate for the Honourable Minister and the wonderful work he is doing for the people of the Republic of South Sudan. It is quite sad that people like the disgruntled author of this baseless article find it appropriate to assassinate the characters of senior government officials like Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit who are working tirelessly to serve the people of South Sudan and by extension the President of the Republic, H.E. Salva Kiir Mayardit.
For a start, Hon. Salvatore Garang Mabiordit is a man with impeccable track record in the management of economy and public resources. He was longest serving first Undersecretary for Finance in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning in the whole country before he was appointed as Technical Advisor in the Ministry of Trade, Commerce, Industry and East African Affairs. In his new assignment, Hon. Salvatore Garang Mabiordit did an exemplary work by introducing much-needed reforms at the Ministry of Trade and Commerce.
As a result of his dedication, determination and hardwork, Hon. Salvatore Garang Mabiordit was appointed by the President of the Republic in March 2018 to head the Ministry of Finance and Planning. Hon. Salvatore Garang won the confidence of the President and that was the reason for his appointment as Minister of Finance and Planning.
Has Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit delivered on his mandate at the Minister of Finance and Planning? The answer is a resounding YES for the following reaons;
Stable inflation rate
Before his appointment as Minister of Finance and Planning, South Sudan was going through exponential and erratic inflation rate. Since his appointment, the inflation rate has stabilized. Long queues have become a thing of the past at petrol stations in Juba. Prices of basic commodities including foodstuff and medicines have dropped drastically allowing citizens of South Sudan to afford to put on their tables. The National Bureau of Statistics has also reported stable inflation rates for basic goods and services.
Strong South Sudanese Pounds
Since the appointment of Hon. Salvatore Garang Mabirodit as the Minister of Finance and Planning, the rate of exchange of South Sudanese Pounds against US Dollars and other currency has stabilized. The exchange rates dropped from the all-time high of 350 South Sudanese to 1 US Dollar to 260 South Sudanese to 1 US Dollar. The exchange rate as been stable since then and it is expected to drop even further with current prevailing peace and stability in the country expected to be cemented by the formation of the Revitalized Transitional Government of National Unity in May 2019.
It is worth noting that Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit was one of the people opposed to the devaluation of South Sudanese Pounds against the US Dollars. The devaluation of South Sudanese Pounds was a political tool used by the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) to sabotage the leadership of the President of the Republic, H.E. Salva Kiir Mayardit. It was a strategy designed to incite citizens against the Government of South Sudan. However, this strategy failed miserably.
During his address to the United Nations Security Council on the political, economic and security situation in South Sudan on 28th February 2019, UN Secretary General said that key macroeconomic indicators had seen some degree of stabilization. He further said, “the South Sudanese Pounds was relatively stable at 260 to the United States Dollars”.
Improved revenue collection and remittance
For the last few months, the National Revenue Authority and the Customs have reported increased revenue collection and remittance to the coffers of the government which is managed by the Ministry of Finance and Planning. It is unfortunate that certain characters such as the author of this malicious article are not aware that the National Revenue Authority falls under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Finance and Planning.
Hon. Salvatore Garang Mabiordit introduced measures that ensured that non-oil revenues are not diverted into pockets of individuals. Hon. Salvatore has ensured a good working relationship between the National Revenue Authority (NRA), Customs Department and the Bank of South Sudan. As a result of improved revenue collection, the Government of the Republic of South Sudan has been able to deliver basic services to the citizens of South Sudan.
Stopped Borrowing from the Domestic Market (Bank of South Sudan and Commercial Bank)
Since his appointment, Hon. Salvatore Garang Mabiordit has stopped domestic borrowing from the Bank of South Sudan and Commercial banks operating in South Sudan. It is not easy but Hon. Salvatore Garang Mabiordit is doing his best to ensure that the domestic borrowing doesn’t erode confidence-building measures initiated by Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit to improve economic situation in South Sudan.
Launch of the National Development Strategy for South Sudan (NDSSS)
Under the able leadership of Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit, the Government of South Sudan in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme launched the National Development Strategy for South Sudan for the period 2018 – 2021. The National Strategy provides the much needed blue print for economic recovery and development in South Sudan during the implementation of the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan (R-ARCISS) and even beyond.
With this impeccable record of success, one is left to wonder what would have provoked this unwarranted attack on the personality of Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit by this malicious author? Do his wild baseless allegations against the Minister of Finance and Planning deserved to be responded? The author is using a fictitious name and he is not a senior official at the Ministry of Finance and Planning as he claims.
It is my firm believe that the author of this baseless article is a member of cartel who have milked the Ministry of Finance and Planning dry. He is part of the group who have this false sense of entitlement that they are only ones who should be allocated resources of the country at the expense of the majority of the citizens of this country.
The moment they are told to give others to have a go at the national cake, they fight back like a scorned woman. They are not happy that Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit has closed some loopholes that individuals have been using to loot the scarce resources of the country. When they are caught and outed, they resort to dirty tricks such as assassinating characters of hard working individuals like Honourable Minister of Finance and Planning.
To set the record straight, it is important to note here that Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit doesn’t condone the so-called “the culture of bribery policy in the payment transactions”. Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit is a man of people and he doesn’t exhibit nepotism or favouritism in any form or shape. Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit is not a businessman; he is not a shareholder or director in the company mentioned in the malicious article.
The author of this article wishes to call upon all South Sudanese to refrain from the dirty politics of assassinating characters of senior government officials just for their selfish personal gain. South Sudan is country endowed with natural resources that if harnessed, will be enough for everyone. I hereby request Mr. Achuil A. Achuildit to put his skills to good use instead of wasting maligning character of respectable individual like Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit who have dedicated their lives to public service.
Finally, Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit was appointed the Minister of Finance and Planning by the President of the Republic because the President has confidence in him. Let’s stop cheap politics of character assassination, lies, hearsays and propaganda against hard working men and women who have been put in senior positions by the President of the Republic. Give Honourable Salvatore Garang Mabiordit a break and let him do his work.
Solomon Akot Mawien is an Author and Commentator on Current Social, Economic and Political issues in South Sudan. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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