News / Africa

South Sudan Parliament Passes Austerity Budget

John TanzaCharlton Doki
South Sudan’s Parliament passed a budget of 6.6 billion South Sudanese pounds for 2012-2013 on Thursday.
 
The budget is less than last year’s budget, which was 10 billion pounds.

The biggest cuts came in foreign travel, salary bonuses, overtime, and housing allowances for government employees, including the army and organized forces.

Civil service salaries account for the biggest part of the budget, followed by spending on security and the judiciary.

South Sudan is operating on what has been called an austerity budget, due to the shutdown in January of oil production, which accounted for 98 percent of government money.
 
While presenting his budget proposal to parliament earlier this year, Finance and Economic Planning Minister Kosti Manibe warned against overspending, which he said could lead to a government deficit.

Manibe said, “I call upon the august house to ensure the implementation of the Public Finance Management and Accountability Act passed last year to ensure transparency and discipline in the implementation of the budget.”

Jok Madut Jok, the Director of the Sudd Research Institute and an undersecretary in the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, says that security is the government’s “major priority,” as evidenced by the fact that the security budget was virtually unchanged.
 
South Sudan has been relying on donor money from other nations and its reserves.

The Sudd Institute estimates that the government has no more than $1 billion in reserve, which could be a problem with a budget that is much larger.  Jok thinks Juba may have spoken with other countries about loans to help it through the difficult times.
 
He said the budget will result in a “marked reduction” in service delivery, “especially in the area[s] of education, security and health care and other such services.”  But, he added, “On the whole, the impact is not going to be so great in the lives of the majority of the people who are not getting any benefits anyway, in terms of salaries being spread only among the political class and civil service.”
 
Jok said any “reduction in the size of the government is actually a lot more symbolic than being a solution to the economic troubles of the country.”
 
‘’This is a budget that [would have] pleased the people if had it been implemented many years back,” he explained.  “You are now doing austerity simply because there is no money.’’

Jok suggests that an austerity budget introduced in the past would have made possible more investment in the nation’s development.

Listen to Doki story on South Sudan austerity budget
Listen to Doki story on South Sudan austerity budgeti
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X


Listen to John Tanza interview with Analyst Madut Jok
Listen to John Tanza interview with Analyst Madut Joki
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Goodbye, New York

This is what the fastest-growing big cities in America have in common More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs