Home | News    Friday 2 September 2011

South Sudan swears in new cabinet members as old currency ceases circulation


By Ngor Arol Garang

September 1, 2011 (JUBA) - The government of South Sudan on Thursday
swore in members of the country’s first cabinet since separation from North Sudan, on the day that South Sudan pounds officially became the legal tender of the newly independent nation.

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South Sudan cabinet swearing in Juba. Sept. 1, 2011 (GoSS website)

The swearing ceremony, administered by Chan Rec Madut Chief Justice of the Republic of South Sudan, was attended by President Salva Kiir Mayardit and his deputy Riek Machar Teny. President Kiir congratulated the new ministers and told them to begin work immediately.

South Sudan’s minister of information Barnaba Marial Benjamin told the media at the presidency shortly after the swearing-in ceremony that an estimated 2.1 billion Sudanese pounds ($0.78 billion) has been collected and exchanged for new South Sudan pounds (SSP).

He said the governor of the central bank had informed the cabinet that the one month conversion process had been completed in all ten states of South Sudan.

“From now the new South Sudan pound is the legal tender. The old Sudan
pound would be regarded as [an] illegal note, since it has been replaced”,
explained the minister.

The information minister who is also the governments official spokesperson did not say what South Sudan would do with the old notes but said discussions with Khartoum on the future of the currency would continue.

"Discussions on the fate of the old currency would resume immediately from tomorrow", he said.

Sudan is also in the process of changing its currency from old Sudan pounds into new Sudan pounds. In the run up to South Sudan’s secession Juba and Khartoum were not able to agree on a joint approach to moving away from having the same currency post-partition.

With no deal done by July 9, both countries quickly introduced new notes to avoid being left with a devalued currency. South Sudan had intended to sell the old Sudan pounds back to Khartoum but appears to have been scuppered as Sudan has already introduced the new Sudan pound. Only low denominations - five, two, and one pound notes - of the old currency and coins are still in circulation in Sudan.

The governor of the Bank of South Sudan, Cornella Koryom Mayiik, told Sudan Tribune he was “pleased to let the general public know that the coverage of currency conversion in all the states has been accomplished successfully."

He said that South Sudan’s notoriously poor road network and heavy rains had made the process challenging. Insecurity in some areas had forced the exchange process to be briefly suspended.


The minister of Information and Broadcasting Barnaba Marial Benjamin, who was one of the few national cabinet members to retain his portfolio, told a thanksgiving reception at his ministry on Thursday that working together was essential for the government to discharge its duties.

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Marial Benjamin Bil, minister of information speaks to journalists on 1st September 2011 in Juba ( Photo: ST/Ngor Garang)

Marial told employees at his ministry that now South Sudan is independent it must stand on its own two feet.

"As a new country we must now shoulder all the responsibilities of nationhood. There should be no excuses anymore now that we have become an independent state."

He welcomed the contribution of all his employees and expressed confidence that the ministry will improve through teamwork.

"There is no reason why we should not do better as a ministry if we work together", he said.

Marial who is one of the few ministers who retained their position, explained that his reappointment into the ministry demonstrates the confidence the president has in him and the rest of the ministry. He pledged to perform his duties diligently to ensure that all the people of South Sudan are adequately informed.

The minister also welcomed the appointment of Atem Yak Atem as his deputy, describing him as a legend in the field of information. Atem’s contribution will be invaluable, Marial said, adding that they would work together to build a successful ministry in order to fulfill the government’s plans and programs.


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  • 2 September 2011 09:53, by AgwerJimmy

    Oh! that is well done. Congratulations to H.e the President and all the cabinet ministers. Now has come the real independence. The public/citizens of South Sudan know who to blame now that you are all sworn in. It is time to let your actions speak louder than words because some of the things are easier said than done.

    For those who retained their posts, make more and better changes for the confidence which the president has in you so that the public witnesses his trust in you through delivery of services. Many challenges are awaiting all the ministries.

    Agwer Jimmy.

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  • 2 September 2011 11:13, by Wanibuluk Ciciliba

    Congrats all the appointees, you must shade off your interest to swindle public fund than you be an outstanding perfomer and initiators but I challeng Mr. Kirr to shoulder the Nation’s role as well by putting forward his cabinets and strongly watching over the law makers particularly. Zero tolerance on Corruption through out all Ministries at Central gv’nt and SATATE Level.
    Welldone President!!!!!

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  • 2 September 2011 11:23, by Mabor Yiel

    A right man in a right position. But remember to change the rules that your manager put at your office. It is bad to scare people with harsh words.



    repondre message

    • 2 September 2011 11:49, by Space

      unethical manager who personalised the public asset. sorry man. u better tell him not to do so

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    • 2 September 2011 16:43, by Akumadit

      Why should we congratulate the cabinet based on president personal interest other than interest of the people. 80 percent of those ministers were appointed to serve the president and fellow Bar el gokrialian. Believe it or not, this new south Sudan’s government will mark the dawn fall of Salva Kiir along with his crooks. Mr. President was requested by the parliament to release names of those ministers who are on corruption list but he refused. The follow are the names of some corrupt ministers on the World bank list:
      1. Hon. Pagan Amum Okech
      2. Garang Diing Akuong
      3. Koryom Mayik
      4. Paul Mayom Akech
      5. Gier Chuang Aluong
      6. Stephen Dhieu Dau

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  • 2 September 2011 14:48, by kuac Agol

    Dear Honourable Ministers.

    The change we hope is upon you,the whole people of south sudan are looking at you to see how you could begine your activities through the expectation of the people.

    To the minister of finance , i beg your pardon to create the system of accoutability and we hope you would wipe out total corruption in south sudan.

    You will also push anti corruption chamber to investigate some indicators of corruption which are happening in all the states.

    Our money is actually valueless compare to the prices of commodities,it is you who could do that for us and without standing firm from finance site our money could not buy anything sure.

    repondre message

  • 4 September 2011 13:47, by Josh

    Gov job is the only work in south sudan. why can’t they focus on reopening new jobs for citizens?

    repondre message

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