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Kiir’s ‘Pre-sale oil investigations’ stalled beyond the deadline

Author: Garang Abraham | Published: Saturday, August 3, 2019

Kiir wants to know the number of pre-sale agreements; past and present.

The government spokesperson has attributed the delay in the pre-sale oil investigations to the change of leadership of the committee.

In June, President Salva Kiir formed a committee to investigate the mechanism used in the pre-sale of South Sudan’s oil over the past few months.

This came shortly after the President relieved Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth as the Minister of Petroleum, and appointed Engineer Daniel Awou Chuong as his replacement.

The team was tasked with the thorough investigation of the pre-sale process, payments, taxes and details of oil companies involved in the oil production and sales.

It was also instructed to ascertain the number of pre-sale agreements, and companies allocated crude oil in advance.

The 7 member committee was headed by the Minister of Cabinet Affairs, Dr. Martin Elia Lomuro, and deputized by Martin Otoromoi, the Deputy Minister of Justice.

It was to report back to the President within 14 working days.

However the team has not met since its formation, and the deadline has elapsed.

Information Minister, Michael Makuei says the committee is running late in its work due to the replacement of the chairperson.

He told the press after the weekly Council of Ministers meeting on Friday that it is now being led by the Minister of Petroleum Daniel Awou.

“The chair was changed and as such the new chair has to take new measures to start. So the committee didn’t start,” Makuei asserted.

He did not mention why Elia was replaced by Mr. Awou.

Mr. Awuo’s was warned by Kiir -during his swearing-in -that he should not accept or request oil advances before the actual sale of South Sudan’s crude oil to the international market.

Kiir said the government should only receive money that is generated from the oil sale and not loans.

Other members of the investigation committee include; Abdon Agou, the Secretary-General of the government, Garang Majak Bol, the first undersecretary in Ministry of Finance, Mayen Wol, Undersecretary in the Ministry of Petroleum and a representative from the National Security Service.

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