Activist urges South Sudan to include accountability, graft fight in financial reforms

South Sudanese Pounds

By Okech Francis

Financial accountability and fighting corruption are key aspects which must be included in financial reforms in South Sudan, Edmund Yakani, the Executive Director of the Community Empowerment for Progress Organisation, said.

On Tuesday, a team from the South Sudan Finance Ministry met a delegation from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to discuss how the financial institution could work with the government to restructure and reform the financial management system in the country.

“Fighting all forms of corruption or delivering financial reforms through political statements than actualizing the required standards of operations for financial reforms and
anti-corruption is not convincing enough,” Yakani said in an emailed statement on Wednesday.

“Government should show commitment towards transparent implementation of financial reforms provided for in Chapter IV of the revitalized peace agreement.”

CEPO cited South Sudan being ranked as the most corrupt among 180 countries in the 2021 Corruption Perceptions Index by Transparency International (TI).
In January, the Troika countries of Norway, the United Kingdom and United States of America called for expedition in the implementation of public financial management reforms in South Sudan, noting that strengthening of such reforms demonstrate
government’s commitment to reform process and enhance trust with global partners.

South Sudan made significant progress on public financial management reforms, including prudent monetary policy, successful foreign exchange reform and steps towards sounder
public cash management.
These steps, according to the Troika, have already benefitted South Sudan’s people through a more stable exchange rate and slower inflation.
“CEPO is urging both the IMF and Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning to ensure that the other state institutions that are constitutionally mandated to ensure that transparency and accountability are practically functional without any political constraints,” Yakani said.

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