Kiir fires finance minister, Nilepet MD, and acting NRA head

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South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir on Wednesday evening fired the finance minister amid rising inflation and an ailing economy.

Kiir, in a decree, read on state-owned South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation (SSBC) sacked Salvatore Garang Mabiordit Wol and replaced him with Athian Diing Athian. 

Athian was a former deputy finance minister until 2018 when Kiir fired him.

The dismissal of the finance minister came after the deteriorating economic situation in South Sudan and the devaluation of the South Sudanese pound to unprecedented levels, amid soaring prices of commodities in the market.

The central bank said recently the local currency was depreciating sharply and there was little that the bank and the finance ministry could do to stop its fall. Inflation was 37.2% in April, according to the last data released by the central bank.

South Sudan’s economy, which relies almost exclusively on oil revenues, has been battered by a drop in global crude prices.

In another decree, President Kiir appointed Africano Mande as the Deputy Commissioner General of the National Revenue Authority pending his recruitment as the head of the tax body.

Mande replaces Erjok Bullen who has been acting commissioner-general for almost a year.

Kiir also fired the head of the National Petroleum and Gas Corporation Nilepet, Dr. Chol Deng Abel, and appointed Mr. Bol Riing Muorwel as the new Nilepet Managing Director.

The president gave no reasons for the changes which take effect immediately.

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