South Sudan’s presidency said on Monday that the government cannot hold corrupt government officials for fears that they might take up arms against the government.
This comes after President Salva Kiir Mayardit sacked the minister of finance and planning, Athian Ding Athian for alleged involvement in corrupt practices including not reporting to the president.
Kiir also said unnamed officials have opened personal bank accounts outside the country and have built skyscrapers and luxurious apartment complexes with money from the state coffers.
Despite evidenced corrupt acts, the Kiir’s press secretary Ateny Wek Ateny said the government cannot prosecute the perpetrators because of fears that they may wage war against the rebellion.
“There are people who squandered money and when you ask, they will rebel and South Sudan is dealing with the revitalized peace agreement on how to bring a permanent peace and the constitution,” Ateny said, according to Eye Radio.
“The responsibility of taking people to court is the responsibility of the people of South Sudan is not entirely for the president. We have not yet arrived at having a permanent constitution in the country. So anybody now can even choose to go back to war if he is asked to pay back the public money,” he added.