ABRAHAM KUANY– The African Union Commotion on Tuesday sanctioned South Sudan from the continent body over unpaid membership arrears.
A letter dated 17th June seen by the NCMP addressed to South Sudan’s Foreign Affairs Ministry, S. Sudan ambassador to Ethiopian, Petia Morgan expressed disappointments after its members were sent off the meeting over the pending payment of membership arrears four days.
“The mission would like to inform your esteemed office that our country, South Sudan, has been sanctioned due to lack of payment of its contribution to the African Union.
“We were barred from participating in the AU meeting on Wednesday, June 16, 2020,” said Amb. Morgan
According to ambassador Petia, South Sudan owns AU three years’ outstanding arrears worth $ 9,191,234 US dollars.
“We are a proud nation and proud people; we should not allow our country to be embarrassed at this regional, continental and international stage.
“It is obvious that we are facing number of challenges, but our contributions to the continental body should be considered as a national heritage and important priority,” said Ambassador Morgan
The decision to sanction South Sudan comes days after the Mission in Addis-Ababa was notified of the financial payment failures of her Country on June 1st 2020 but failed to reply back to the body.
Commenting on the matter, a political analyst – James Okuk said it is embarrassing for South Sudan to fail to clear its arrears to the African Union yet some individuals are misusing the country’s funds.
James Okuk says the country cannot afford to stay in Africa without being a recognized member of the continental body.
“There is money flying around, some individuals and private rich men are playing with money of the government and the government can’t pay its own dues to an important organization like AU.
“This is acceptable and Juba must move very first to settle those arrears. Even if it means borrowing from those who run away from the finance ministry, then they should pay those arrears so that the country is back to AU. We cannot afford to be In Africa without being a member of the AU” Said Okuk
South Sudan, which seceded from Sudan on 9 July 2011, joined the African Union on 27 July 2011, becoming member number 54.
South Sudan has a lot of unpaid arrears to regional, international and global bodies it’s a member to.
But According to the ministry of petroleum, South Sudan produces more than 175,000 barrels per day.
Also in July and August last, South Sudan National Revenue Authority announced that it collected 6.5 million dollars from non-oil revenues.