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Is Hon. Dier Tong saving dollars lost in the past through unnecessary medical claims?

By Pesuech Arok

News reached media fraternity recently that the current Minister of Finance cancelled all the unnecessary medical claims that caused the disappearance dollars in Central Bank during the past few years. As someone who witnessed the crowd 3 years ago, such a step deserves great appreciation.

It was in October 2019, I visited a friend in the Ministry of Finance and Economics planning as the first time for me to enter that building since God created heaven and earth.

When I entered, I saw a large crowd of people, each person with a yellow envelope. I thought there was distribution of Chinese rice but later turned out as a different story. Another large crowd was waiting outside the fence with their gloomy faces eyeing the Ministry’s building. The only two words you could hear were the Minister’s name and Central Bank. I managed to interrogate one of the women at the entrance just to inquire more using Arabic Juba.

Me: salam bitak mama
Her: salam bitak jena taiyi
Me: ita ga mulu shunu ini?
Her: ana indi awaraak ta ilaj ini. Ana deru gurush shan rua fi India.
Me: de kam gurush?
Her: mia alib dollar.
Me: iti bi ligo?
Her: aiyi. Nas tanin ligo gurush betomon aktar men gurush taiyi de.

In English:
Me: greetings to you mama
Her: greetings to you my son
Me: what are you doing here?
Her: my documents were stamped here and I am looking for money to go to India for treatment.
Me: how much?
Her: one hundred thousand dollars
Me: will you get this money?
Her: yah. Why not? Some people got their money more than mine.

I was puzzled as to why such huge amount can be requested and approved to one person in a country where the National Army, Police, teachers and doctors go for months without salaries. When the old woman mentioned one hundred thousand dollars, my heart almost rupture due to high blood pressure. I started thinking about the famous song from Akutkuei during the liberation struggle which goes;
“Junub panda ka cë ciët ke ciɛm gaal, bai bai panda ka ciët ke ciɛm ajïth.”

As if that was not enough, I approached another guy with mountainous buttocks wearing Azande skin colour who claimed to have a flu for 3 months and needs two hundred thousand dollars to go for treatment in Egypt. That disease can be treated in Morobo clinic at a cost of ten dollars but because there’s generosity in the Ministry, such huge amount can be approved for petty claims which later on exchanged in black market just to buy cars and pay wages for Slay Queens instead of going for real treatment.

I managed to ask him whether such claims can be coined by any South Sudanese regardless of tribe. He categorically assured me using his Omdurman Arabic, “Nas el gaidin ina da men arba siteen gabail ta Junub Sudan kul.” Literally, that “the crowd you see here are all from the 64 tribes of South Sudan.” He further encouraged me to write my own claim as well and in a month, I will get my money. He sounded like an expert. I think he had been doing this business since Kuol Athian days of “wealth era.”

I inquired, “is two hundred thousand dollars ok?” He answered, “even more.” That was the best wealthiest conversation I have ever had on earth since mum gave birth to me 30 years ago. I ran back home with a speed of a jet to draft a two hundred thousand dollars document and fake any BIG disease that will attract the Minister’s sympathy and humanity.

While I was writing the letter, several plans immediately gathered in my mind. What shall I do after receiving the two hundred thousand dollars?

1. Buy 100 cows and marry my beloved girlfriend whose beauty and gentility dominated Hai Thoura Talk Show as South Sudan number one beautiful human being.

2. Go for steam bath(sauna) and massage to soften my dry skeletons which became hardened during the period in the cattle camp.

3. Pay my own accommodation bill in Pyramid Hotel for 7 days and enjoy sleeping in a 6 by 6 bed popularly known as “Ce tik mär” in Yirol literature while joyously sharing the dining hall with SPLM I.O illiterate commanders accommodated there during peace agreement.

4. Abandon the teaching profession and join the big boys whose conversation is about dollars and girls in Hai Thoura.

5. Farewell to kombo läm, kombo samak, fatah ful, madong-posho etc and join chicken soup, spaghetti mix with läm, Terekeka fish and pizza plateau.

After drafting the document, I rushed back to the Ministry and got confused where to start the deal. I moved there for two days before being rescued by one expert who intervened to save my little energy I was wasting around the building. He instructed me that such deals need earlier connection from “kick-backers.” And to someone like me who doesn’t know these routes should just retire in my ghetto. I was speechless just staring at the building with agony and shame.

The man assured me while on phone with his personal “kick-backer” and the smile on his face indicated a successful deal of around three hundred thousand dollars. I folded my hands on my back thinking about the unfair world while watching the large crowd under the trees waiting for what they don’t know.

I came back home footing. The distance that took me 25 minutes while rushing home to write the document took me again one hour to reach my ghetto. At the moment, I have resumed my kombo and teaching profession properly.

However, in 2022, President Salva appointed Hon Dier Tong as the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning. What I have seen in the first one month is the disappearance of yellow envelopes holders at the gate of Ministry. Such directives of cancelling such destructive deals might have come from the Minister with the aim of saving our dollars.

With this achievement, enemies of progress have started staging negative propaganda against the Minister and with President Kiir trust on him, they will not win. I wish you well beny Dier. Fight this thievery with all all efforts. Yenekan.


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