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Stephen Par Kuol, Secretary-General of the NTC speaks during 23rd monthly meeting of RJMEC held in Juba on Thursday [Photo Jok Solomun]

National Transitional Committee needs over $14 million for graduation of unified forces

The National Transitional Committee (NTC) on Thursday said it needs more than 14 million U.S dollars for graduation and redeployment of the 83,000 unified forces.

“The NTC would like to report that it has submitted a budget of 14, 430, 928 dollars to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning to expedite the implementation of remaining critical tasks and activities,” Stephen Par Kuol, Secretary-General of the NTC said during the 23rd monthly meeting of the peace monitors (RJMEC) held in Juba.

NTC is a body charged with supervision of the implementation of the 2018 revitalised peace deal signed to end six years of conflict in the country.

Kuol who is also the national Minister for Peace Building, said the budget covers graduation, redeployment of unified forces, and screening of the forces for the second phase of training.

The transitional unity government earlier on said it plans to graduate the first phase of 53,000 forces in 18 training centers across South Sudan.

Several dates have previously been set to graduate the unified forces but they have not yet been fulfilled.

The government kept extending the time for the graduation citing financial and logistical constraints.

Other government officials cited the arms embargo imposed by the UN Security Council in 2018 as the reason for the delay in passing out the forces.

Kuol urged the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning to release the required funds to expedite the graduation of the forces.

He disclosed that the NTC has already facilitated the purchase and transportation of food items from Khartoum for the unified forces.

“The NTC is delighted to report that some of these food items arrived in Upper Nile and Bahr el Ghazal region respectively,” Kuol said.

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