27th February 2021
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UNSC wants details of S.Sudan’s oil money

Author: Jale Richard | Published: Sunday, February 21, 2021

An oil facility in Unity State | File photo

The United Nations Security Council has tasked Chinese oil companies in South Sudan to provide details of oil revenues they have transferred to the government in the last two years.

Through its appointed Panel of Experts on South Sudan, the UN’s peace and security body says it was informed by “reports of misappropriation and diversion of public resources” and the “lack of transparency, oversight and financial governance” in South Sudan.

In a letter dated 16 February 2021, the Panel Coordinator, Mr. Emilio Manfredi said he is requesting information about Dar Petroleum Operating Company –DPOC, in which the government of South Sudan has a financial stake through Nile Petroleum Corporation-Nilepet.

The letter was addressed to the heads of the Chinese and Malaysian oil companies, running the consortium of DPOC.

Mr. Zhou Zuokun, is the President of DPOC and Mr. Anuar Ismail is the Country Chairman of Petronas.

The Managing Director of Nilepet, Eng. Bol Ring and South Sudan’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Mr. Akuei Bona Malwal have also been copied o the letter.

“The Panel seeking clarification on the financial transactions that DPOC has made to the government and Nilepet. The Panel is seeking detailed responses because the Panel has received information that DPOC has not remitted the payment to the Bank of South Sudan for yearly surface rental fees,” Mr. Emilio said in the letter.

The UN Panel of experts also known as the Sanctions Committee said it wants to know whether DPOC paid surface rental fees associated with its crude oil extraction in the 2019/2020 and 2020/2021 fiscal years.

The revitalized peace agreement, and the 2012 Petroleum Revenue Management Act mandates that petroleum revenues, which include surface rental fees, shall not be paid into any account other than that managed by the Bank of South Sudan.

The law also requires oil revenues to be made public by contractors and sub-contractors, including DPOC.

The UN panel of experts also says it is “concerned that the public revenue Nilepet has earned from its eight percent stake in the consortium has not been transferred from DPOC accounts transparently.”

Mr. Emilio Manfredi, the Coordinator Panel of Experts on South Sudan gave the oil companies until March 1 to provide the information.

South Sudan depends on its oil revenues for foreign exchange but the sector has been implicated in the Panel’s previous reports of mismanagement.

In 2018, the United States imposed sanctions on 15 oil operators in the country, accusing them of financing the country’s civil war.

The UN Panel of Experts has the magnate of studying progress made by the South Sudan government in restoring peace and has the responsibility of recommending to the UN Security Council measures-including targeted sanctions.

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