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South Sudan seeks to stop smuggling of counterfeit money

September 26, 2009 (JUBA) – Southern Sudan authorities warned the public against the proliferation of counterfeit money, in Sudanese pound and US dollar printed outside the country and smuggled to the region.

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GOSS Minister of Interior Lt. Gen. Gier Chuang Aluong (photo Larco Lomayat)

Southern Sudan interior ministry estimates that there are over 15 million fake dollars circulating in the semi autonomous region. The Interior ministry seeks to contain the flood of fake money because it can seriously affect the fragile local economy and cause inflation besides other economic effects.

Speaking from Juba, the minister of internal affairs, General Gier Chuang Aluong, told Sudan Tribune that the region is flooded with millions of faked hard currencies imported mainly from neighboring countries he declined to name.

However, he said three foreigners with nationalities of Kenya were in July caught in Bor town holding lots of faked money both in Sudanese pounds and dollars.

"Although this money is printed outside the region and sent in from the neighboring countries, our people are also involved in the deal," he said. "This is why this money travels very fast into the rural towns and villages," he added.

He continued to say that counterfeited foreign currencies particularly dollars are in abundant circulation in three provincial capitals of Wau, Juba and Malakal but big concentration is Juba. It is Juba which supplies Bor, Torit, Yei and other emerging big towns in the region, he adds.

"Because of this circulation in abundance, I decided bringing it to the attention of South Legislative Assembly to consider making a law that stops smuggling of fake foreign currencies."

While waiting for a bill from the assembly, the ministry of interior will consider assigning special police force to keenly and closely monitor where these currencies are being imported to the region, he adds.

Asked where these Special Forces will be deployed, the special police and security forces will be deployed in strategic places such as check points at the South Sudan-Uganda, Kenya, and Congo borders; he said adding their main task will concentrate on proper luggage search and check of the travelers both in and out.

(ST)