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South Sudan army lambasts corruption in military spending

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January 27, 2017 (JUBA) - South Sudanese army on Friday angrily reacted to a report by a Washington-based human watchdog group accusing the military of looting national resources in total lack of accountability and transparency.

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A SPLA soldier stands in front of a vehicle in Juba on December 20, 2013. (Photo Reuters/Goran Tomasevic)

Enough Project estimated that more than 100,000 "ghost" soldiers could be on the military’s payroll, allowing for commanders and military leaders to boost their incomes or reputations.

Army spokesperson Colonel Santo Dominic Chol denied in an exclusive interview with Sudan Tribune on Friday the charges, calling the findings “baseless” and mere propaganda machine to tarnish the institutional image of the South Sudanese army.

“It is irresponsible and reckless" to talk about this nonsense when people who spew these malicious lie and propaganda, know what the SPLA do to ensure stability and avoid the country sliding in anarchy. People who say these rubbishes show a lack of appreciation of the kind of work we do as the national army”, said Col. Chol, claiming the army has its ways of reporting.

The military officer acknowledged that military expenditure was rising, but said this was due to an upsurge in military operations in defend of the country in areas where rebels are active.

“So they want the army not to be funded, and when we are funded, we should come out to say this is what we have procured with the budget? Where in the world you have the army go and announced weapons they have purchased, tell me”, asked Col. Chol when reached on Friday.

The Enough Project report which analyzed violent kleptocracy as “a system of state in which ruling networks and commercial partners hijack governing institutions for the purpose of resource extraction and for the security of the regime. The ruling networks, it explains, utilize varying levels of violence to maintain power and repress dissenting voices.

The report published on Thursday, gives details of massive corruption within South Sudan’s army. It notes that corrupt activities within the army include procurement fraud, irregular spending unchecked by civilian authority, and bloated troop rosters featuring thousands of “ghost” (non-existent) soldiers.

Brian Adeba, Associate Director of Policy at the Enough Project, said “The effect of corruption in proliferating insecurity in South Sudan cannot be underestimated. The country’s politicians can only begin to realize the fruits of security for their citizens if they tackle the graft in the army.”

The report describes how despite widespread suffering in South Sudan, including famine-like conditions and the severe economic hardships South Sudanese people experience, massive amounts of the country’s dwindling funds continue to go to the South Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA), where they are diverted and misspent without accountability.

Jacinth Planer, report editor and Editor/Researcher at the Enough Project noted that “On paper, South Sudan’s legal and institutional frameworks enshrine civilian, not military leadership. The SPLA is meant to protect, defend, and hold itself accountable to the South Sudanese people. But the destructive system and practices that have developed now instead work against these purposes, and the South Sudanese people who face great personal risks have paid the highest price. The international community should steadfastly support the South Sudanese people and especially those who try to uphold the institutions that are being undermined today.”

The report finds that within what enough identifies as a violent kleptocratic system in South Sudan, a lack of financial oversight over military expenditure, combined with heavy influence by political appointees, has created opportunities for mass corruption in the SPLA.

John Prendergast, Founding Director at the Enough Project observed that "There is no accountability for the looting of state resources in South Sudan, especially with military spending. The missing piece of an effective international response is the creation of leverage to shift the calculations of these violent kleptocrats from war to peace, from mass corruption—including in the military—to good governance and accountability in spending. The incentives that reward violence and theft must be changed. The international community needs to help make war costlier than peace for the leaders and create targeted and personal consequences for corrupt war-mongers.”

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  • 27 January 23:55, by barbayo

    Enough project should be close in South Sudan and its members should all be arrest and i will provide list for those , members

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    • 28 January 06:19, by Eastern

      Barbayo,

      Go ahead and close it, morons!

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    • 28 January 08:12, by Mayom County Troops

      Yes the country leadership is full with corruption from roof to bottom ,why not agreements are not to be withdrawal from South Sudan govt ?

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    • 28 January 19:33, by Dinka-Defender-General

      Guys, half of the information is right and half incorrect. For example, not all the SPLA institutions have ghost names. I don’t have ghost names or some of the commanders I know never use ghost names as "Enough Project" stated. Why don’t go ahead and name the institutions that have ghost names in their lists. Anyway, every country around the world has corruption.

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  • 28 January 01:05, by jur_likang_a_ likan’g

    You can arrest Enough Project members in South Sudan but you should also know that you will never arrest TRUTH that permeates everywhere like air. Come back to the Truth.

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  • 28 January 01:27, by Gabriel KK

    Yes there is corruption in all government institutions in South Sudan but I doubt the figure put forward by Enough Project. 100,000 ghost names is an exaggeration. A true number could be something between 5000-10000 if I am right. Anyway who is listening in this Country where those in authority put themselves first rather than the Country or poor individuals.

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    • 28 January 01:30, by Gabriel KK

      A time will come when everyone will be asked to explain how they acquired their wealth.

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  • 28 January 04:37, by Ayuiu Makuac Lam

    The fact should not be denied, why everything is deny? © fighting is denying,© corruption is denying, what will not be deny? south Sudan will not and ever be stable if visible things are denied.

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    • 28 January 06:22, by Eastern

      Ayuiu,

      I like your tone these days; you have now seen the deception, theft, murder, reckless waging of war by SPLA squandering the country’s resources which people like Barbayo want to be kept under wraps. SPLA is a big liar and a murderous thief, that I know!

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      • 28 January 06:59, by Kuch

        Mr. Eastern,

        The SPLA deserves to use the resources if at all there is any. Since they are fighting animals bidding for the Americans, Europe, juus and some of their arab masters that they always run to for supplies.

        After since the current SPLA is considered to be a tribal militia and all the oil wells except one well in former Unity state belongs to Nuers to which you fellows even destroyed>>>

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        • 28 January 07:03, by Kuch

          Then why do you fellows again complain of resources that don’t even belong to you, but the same people (the Dinkas/Jiengs) that you fellows don’t want? People have telling you fellows all along to stop your useless armed rebellion and let start ways to develop our country, but some of you fellows have closed their minds in a way that they think>>>

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          • 28 January 07:10, by Kuch

            they can have it both ways, to not want the Dinkas/Jiengs and to get the resources that come out from the Jiengs/Dinkas territories. Fellows, if truth is to be told, then you fellows are fighting a losing game.
            Imagine the whole Dinka/Jieng that you fellow don’t want give power to day and took up arms against your so-called Riek Machar government, l will bet chap, it will not take a week before>>

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            • 28 January 07:15, by Kuch

              the same Dinkas/Jiengs that you don’t want take that damn power from you fellows by force if they want. But that is not the case, the Dinkas/Jiengs are not that fools fellows, we know how deal with difficult issues otherwise, the whole South Sudan would have been arabized and islamized if were to be throwing tantrums like babies and fight useless wars like our Nuers, Shilluks and some Equatorians>

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              • 28 January 07:20, by Kuch

                Some people in South Sudan and indeed many of the online trolls are not even South Sudanese, but bunch of misfits from the North Sudan and other neighboring countries that keep trolling thinking there may be some ways that South Sudan would again be re-united with North Sudan. Good luck to them. That is not gona happens even in million years.

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                • 28 January 07:33, by Kuch

                  That is purposely because of our oil fields and that is all. All these nonsense of humanitarian, aid and peacekeeping and genocide are just veneers and pretexts. But they have some of their fools like their Riek Machar, Pagan Amuom, Lam Akol, Majak Agoot et al that they have taken hostage to use as their tools to crawl themselves into our country>>>

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  • 28 January 06:24, by Eastern

    Let the Americans just close the tap on the US Dollars and let us see if Juba can continue to wage the reckless war funded with Chinese Yuan, morons!

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    • 28 January 07:25, by Kuch

      Mr. Eastern,

      I can see your frustration chap, but know this. The US, the UK, their UN, their creepy NGOs and some of their allies in between will never touch anything in our country as far as we are concerned. The US, the UK, their UN, creepy NGOs and some of their allies in between have been your useless armed rebellion as their bargaining chip to crawl themselves into our country to come>>>

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      • 28 January 07:29, by Kuch

        and plunder our country like what they currently doing in Libya, Iraq, CAR and Mali. Do you fellows know why the US, the UK, France and their allies are not even talking about issues to do with North Sudan, Libya, Yemen and other countries these days, but they so fixated on our country and our people?>>>

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        • 28 January 07:36, by Kuch

          Some clueless fellows like some Equatorians and some Nuers are being used by the CIA, MI6 and others as their pawns/proxies to fight the corporate America, Europe, their UN and their allies in between just they used the then so-called free Libyan army, free Syrian army and others>>>

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          • 28 January 07:40, by Kuch

            on the pretext of an imaginary democracy. As I said before, our country has been taken hostage by the biggest criminals on earth, the corporate America, Europe and the UN because they have found some fools among us. But we are back, they will never ever get anything in our country>>>

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            • 28 January 07:47, by Kuch

              The US, the UK and their UN want to rule our country through the UN and African Union and they are using terrorism through their puppets/stooges like Riek Machar and Lam Akol criminals to to do their bidding have a look on this link chap:http: //www.victorianweb.org/history/empire/opiumwars/opiumwars1.html but they are wasting their times and our times>>>

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              • 28 January 07:52, by Kuch

                As for our country use the Chinese Yuan, almost countries in Africa, Asia and many other countries won’t using the US dollars pretty soon and no one will miss that damn dollar. You fellows are behind and you are playing games with our country and our people when you fellows don’t even know what is that you are really fighting for?>>>

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                • 28 January 07:57, by Kuch

                  For other South Sudanese people who know you fellows like the palms of our hands, you are letting your selves being used by our external enemies just like you were used by our arch enemy, North Sudan against us in 1990th to early 2000th, and you fellows were paid with food rations to fight the SPLA. But this time, it is the corporate America, the UK, their UN, their creepy NGOs>>>

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                  • 28 January 08:02, by Kuch

                    and some of their allies in between that using you fellows as their pawns/proxies to fight their dirty war and they want to paying you with the same food rations (humanitarians and aid) just like the North Sudan did. Fellows, here in South Sudan, we know who is who. All these rubbishes of freedom fighting and looting of resources shouldn’t have to be fought by armed rebellion, but through ballot>>

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                    • 28 January 08:07, by Kuch

                      boxes. Salva Kiir has not even overstayed his welcome yet like many other leaders, but the impatience of some sociopaths like Riek Machar and his sponsors out our country brought this mess. Not all the Dinkas/Jiengs even want Salva Kiir in power indefinitely, but the way some hooligans in Equatotria and Nuerland often scream the Dinkas/Jiengs>>>

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                      • 28 January 08:13, by Kuch

                        name isn’t helpful, but to goad the Dinkas/Jiengs to their fighting modes. Anyway fellows, we always you fellows to chuck out the crap and let us move on. Let us reconcile our selves and build our country. No one is going to reconcile us, but our own selves. All those rubbishes in foreign hotels and bars are not for the benefit of our country>>

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                        • 28 January 08:18, by Kuch

                          and our people, but for the benefits and interests of others...case in point, the then so-called compromised peace agreement (CPA II). It was nothing to do with our country and our people, but the hand over of our country to corporate America, the UK, Norway, the UN and the then IGAD-PLUS----that was a NEW WORLD ORDER UN government to take over our country??>>>

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                          • 28 January 08:22, by Kuch

                            That damn CPA II was not negotiated by anyone, the government of South Sudan or Riek Machar, but the damn paper was drafted by the corporate America, the UK, the UN, Norway and the then IGAD-PLUS countries and pushed into South Sudanese government throat to sign to which it refused and later signed it with a lot of reservations>>>

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                            • 28 January 08:28, by Kuch

                              Our well learned fellows like Riek Machar and Pagan Amuom signed the damn paper and disappeared to America, because he knew he did sell our country foreign countries and their interests, but Riek Machar of old didn’t even show any slightest shred of shame of what he did. He even wanted the deployment of foreign troops into our country to come>>>

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                              • 28 January 09:05, by king kush

                                Kuch
                                Lol take a deep breath brother it’s going to be ok,stick to the topic please you are all over.

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                                • 28 January 15:34, by jubaone

                                  King Kush,
                                  Much desperately needs a little break and a cup of cold water. He has serious problems bedeviling him and his heart ? is deeply troubled. Perhaps he should go to his luak in Kuajok or Cuibet to get some fresh air and be reenergized. He may develop irreversible depression.

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    • 28 January 08:54, by Mopedi

      Eastern

      Not only Dollars tap, first the South Sudanese embassies in the USA, BRITAIN and all other Troika countries be closed because there is no political master in SS they act unilaterally as if they are not part of this planet each of them know about the corruption in the army, some forces are not paid for nearly two years where are their money?

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      • 28 January 09:00, by Mopedi

        SPLA has created a new generation which shall not honestly compete in the political market,all their children are smeared with blood of innocent citizen, their houses are covered with the same blood, their children are studying using money for the death one therefore, all are cursed.

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        • 28 January 09:10, by Mopedi

          For those thinking there shall be no change in SS they are passively deceived by this evil government, the revolution has started for good whether with Dr. Riek or without him it must go on. Mr hanger has come with heavy weapons that Kiir forces can not manage, tomorrow sickness shall come to support this revolution to crash Kiir’s regime

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  • 28 January 09:28, by king kush

    Ok enough is enough to the enough project.
    Where did you guys come up with this number.?
    1 Bilpham didn’t release any info regarding the
    Number of SPLA soldiers.?
    2 how many soldiers have been observed from the
    Spla/io. Who pays them.?
    3 do you guys have solid proof, of the real number vs
    The incorrect payroll number.
    4 how did you obtain these info, for example did
    you pay some people to get it

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  • 28 January 09:39, by king kush

    If you answer yes, then how credible are they can
    They be lying.
    5 did you try to relay this information to Bilpham
    and the presidency before you came out to the public
    With it. If no, why (what is your motivation).

    If you answer these 5 questions I have 5 more questions but they depend on you answer of the first five.

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  • 28 January 09:42, by Dr. Rich

    This corruption issue is opened even if one is kiir supporter. just look many nuers solders have defected Dr.Riek yet the payroll 4 soldiers remains thesame. instead there would be enough funds 4 our country 2 improve our economy yet it as worsen

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