Home | News    Thursday 15 September 2016

Amum calls for government of technocrats in South Sudan

September 14, 2016 (JUBA) – Former South Sudan’s minister for peace and ex-secretary general of the ruling party, the SPLM, has called for the exit of President Salva Kiir from the presidency and for formation of a transitional leadership of technocrats until elections are held.

JPEG - 9 kb
Former SPLM secretary-general Pagan Amum attends his court trial in the South Sudan capital, Juba, on 11 March 2014 (Photo: Reuters/Andreea Campanu)

Amum’s call came after the release of the “groundbreaking” exposure of president Kiir’s corruption practices together with his immediate family members.

In his statement duped as ‘communique 10’, ‘The Sentry Report – Corruption in South Sudan’, Amum commended the corruption report released by The Sentry, saying it was sophisticated and professional.

“Yesterday, a blue ribbon panel of international experts and dignitaries disclosed in unprecedented detail the most extensive forensic effort yet to expose corruption on a world-class scale in our young country. John Prendergast, George Clooney, Don Cheadle and Brian Adeba through The Sentry organization, and a host of other veterans from the United States Treasury Department and the FBI, have completed almost two years of sophisticated and professional forensic investigations of massive misappropriation and diversion of public funds by Kiir and his accomplices,” said the former SPLM secretary general in the statement extended to Sudan Tribune.

“They “showed us the money”, billions of it. They showed us where and for whom it was spent. They showed us elegant mansions in foreign countries; illicit business relationships; gargantuan payments to Kiir, his family and friends; illegal kickbacks from arms purchases; and flaunting of incredible greed in many different countries around the world,” Amum quoted from the report.

He said although The Sentry report has made a lot of exposure about president Kiir and his family, yet it has not exposed additional monies stolen by the president and hidden abroad.

“To make matters worse, there are huge hidden Kiir bank accounts in other countries that still remain concealed, such as the one in the Abu Dhabi National Bank in the UAE, held by a northern Sudanese who is a longtime partner of the President,” Amum further exposed.

He said the “damning report”, combined with other recent developments, effectively signals an end to one of the largest and most destructive kleptocracies in the history of the world.

“Until now, the people of South Sudan have paid for it with pain, humiliation and death,” he said.

He said the corruption has been foregoing schools, medical services, clean water, adequate food, good roads, sound housing, safety, security of women from rape and “all the other indices of civilization.”

“Does anyone in the Kiir ruling group of thieves think that the people of Awiel, Warrab, Rumbek or Panaru suffer their own agonies more lightly, because they admire this gang of bloodsuckers wallowing in luxury? If so, this is a fantasy on their part that is going to be corrected in short order,” Amum further wrote.

The former senior official of the government and the ruling party who was previously charged for corruption and sacked by President Kiir, said the option was to remove president Kiir from power.

“The solution to all of this is plain for all to see. The Kiir pretend “government” must go, and South Sudan must have an acting government of South Sudanese technocrats performing the tasks necessary to any functional country. There must be a national “Roundtable” organized immediately with all stakeholders represented, to build political consensus, to validate the country’s government of technocrats, and to organize and approve special programs and policies for peace building, justice, accountability, recovery of stolen monies, and other transitional activities,” he suggested.

“The convention would set the dates and procedures for national elections to be held as soon as it is practical to do so. The international community would provide security for this process using its current mandate,” he said.

Amum, who resides in the United States, said he has not involved in the corruption despite the previous charges, saying he does not own any “expensive” property abroad.

“However, I will say now what all who know me can verify, and that is I am far from a wealthy man. I own no mansions or expensive property anywhere in the world. I live in my mother-in-law’s rental house, a modest working class dwelling, where I asked her daughter and my wife for her hand in marriage a decade ago,” he said.

Amum, who describes himself as “Pagan Amum Okiech for South Sudan Reborn” in the statement, called on the people of South Sudan to “join us.”

“We have to remain true to South Sudan and her citizens everywhere. We have to honour the character and spirit of John Garang. We have to love our land and see its future as one of the most prosperous countries in Africa, where South Sudanese of all tribes live in peace and harmony as one nation. We will unleash the skills and power of our people to create wealth and a dignified life, and we shall take our rightful and respected place among the countries of the world. Please join us!” he appealed.

(ST)