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South Sudanese Mother detained at a Nairobi Hospital following 13000 USD medical bills

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South Sudanese Mother detained at a Nairobi Hospital following 13000 USD medical bills

By Manyang David Mayar

A South Sudanese mother is pleading for help after being detained at a Nairobi hospital. Aluel James Deng says she had an emergency delivery and had twins at Ruai Family Hospital in Nairobi. She says when she could not pay the medical bill of 1.4 million shillings or about 13-thousand dollars, hospital authorities would not allow her to leave.

Reached by phone at the hospital ward in Nairobi, Aluel James Deng says three days ago she had an emergency delivery which forced her to be admitted to Ruai Family Hospital where she gave birth to twins.

On Thursday, Deng says the hospital served her with a medical bill totaling 1.4 million Kenya shillings, an amount she says she cannot pay.

“The most painful part is, this hospital is treating [me] like [I am] not a human being. How can a bill of three days become 13,000 US dollars? I am heartbroken because the father of the kids left me, maybe because of the bills, I don’t know. I am hurt also because my other children are with a neighbor”, she explained.

Deng says she moved to Nairobi in 2020 on the invitation of her husband, a Kenyan man she identifies as Samuel Otieno who she says is the father of the twins after she had two children by another man.

Deng says when Otieno disappeared and left her at the hospital with a towering medical bill, she turned to her parents but in vain.

“My dad is so hard to get hold of. I tried to get hold of him. My mum, I don’t know where she is, my sister I don’t know where she is. I am all alone. I tried to contact them. I tried, I tried. But can’t. All the numbers that they gave me, they are not going through so I am alone”, she said.

The 30-year old mother from Warrab State says after all her attempts to contact relatives and ask them to intervene failed, she turned to social media to tell her story.

An official in charge of client relations at the hospital confirmed to this program that a South Sudanese woman gave birth to twins at the hospital three days ago and she is not able to pay her bills. But the official declined to comment further saying he/she is not authorized to speak to the media. The official says the hospital would issue a statement later in the day.

South Sudan In-Focus saw copies of several medical bills that Deng is expected to clear before leaving the hospital gate including charges for admission, ambulance, maternity, nutrition and pharmacy bills.

Reached by phone from the Kenya Capital Nairobi, Chol Ajongo, South Sudan Ambassador to Kenya, says he is aware of a South Sudanese woman who has given birth to twins at the hospital facing high medical bills but unfortunately, Ajongo says there is nothing the embassy can do.

“This is purely a family issue, a girl who is married to a Kenyan, who delivered in a hospital, we don’t know the details of why would the bill would kick to 13-000 US dollars as if somebody has done a heart operation. Embassy can do nothing. What is required of embassy, we come to assist our nationals when they have legal issues but not medical bills which is more or less something to do with maternity”, Ajongo said.

Ambassador Ajongo said he was able to reach Aluel’s father who is a Member of Parliament in the South Sudanese National Legislative Assembly. He said the father was not in position to help. This program wasn’t able to reach Aluel’s father immediately.
Deng is asking well-wishers for support.

“This is a real story. There is no conman. There is no conwoman. And I am seeking help from my people, from my South Sudanese people. And I know it is shameful but I had to come out. You can’t die in silence,” he said.

Someone who identified himself as Chelsea Badal has started a GoFundMe, a social media fundraising platform to help Deng raise money to pay her medical bills. At press time, GoFundMe account had only 63 dollars out of 15,000 dollars set as the target.

 

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South Sudan deputy central bank governor dies in Nairobi

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Deputy governor of central bank got administration and finance Daniel Keach. [Photo by BOSS]
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JUBA – South Sudan’s deputy governor of central bank for administration and finance, Daniel Keach Puoch, died in the Kenyan capital Nairobi on Wednesday after having been on treatment for several months in the Kenyan capital, the bank and family sources said.

The senior South Sudan bank official was appointed vide a presidential decree as the deputy governor of the bank for administration and finance.

Speaking to Sudans Post in Nairobi, a family member who requested not to be identified said the Puoch passed on Wednesday, but refused to disclose the cause of the illness that culminated in his demise.

“This is to confirm that he passed on yesterday here in Nairobi. He has been on medication for a number of months,” the family source said.

In a statement, the central bank confirmed the demise of the senior financial institution official.

“The Bank of South Sudan regrets to inform the general public and the people of South Sudan about the untimely death of the Deputy Governor for Administration and Finance Hon. Daniel Kech which occurred on July,13, 2022 in Nairobi,” the bank statement said.

Via Sudans Post

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Sudan’s al Burhan in Juba for talks with Kiir on peace implementation

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Sudan’s al Burhan in Juba for talks with Kiir on peace implementation

President Salva Kiir Mayardit(right) welcoming head of Sudan sovereign council Abdelfattah al Burhan at Juba airport [Photo by Presidency]

JUBA — The leader of Sudan’s Transitional Sovereign Council Gen. Abdelfattah al Burhan has arrived in the South Sudanese capital Juba to hold talk with President Salva Kiir Mayardit on the implementation of the revitalised peace agreement according to a statement by the presidency.

The presidency statement said the Sudanese leader was received at Juba airport by President Kiir and the two are expected to discuss the challenges facing the implementation of the revitalised peace agreement.

“His Excellency Salva Kiir Mayardit, President of the Republic has this evening received General Abdel Fattah al-Buhran, the Chairman of Transitional Sovereign Council of the Republic of Sudan, upon arrival at Juba International Airport,” the statement said.

Ateny Wek Ateny, the press secretary in the office of the president, said “the two leaders will hold a meeting tomorrow (Friday, 18th March 2022) to discuss issues pertaining to challenges affecting the implementation of the Revitalized Peace Agreement and also the progress of the implementation of Sudan’s Peace Agreement that is being meditated by South Sudan Government.”

The senior presidency aide further said Kiir “will be briefed by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan on his recent visit to Uganda where he held a meeting with President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni as guarantors of the Revitalized Peace Agreement on the way forward following the cancellation of the retreat that was scheduled to take place in Kampala recently.”

 

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Civil Society calls for Communities’ participation in the Petroleum Sector in greater Upper Nile State.

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Participants pose for a group photo after the training/ Juba

The Executive Director of Upper Nile Youth Development Association (UNYDA) Mr. Charles Onak has called on the government of the Republic of South Sudan to engage in wider and meaningful community participation in natural resource management to promote sustainable development.

 

The remarks were delivered during the opening of a workshop on 6th March 2022 in Juba on Enhancing the capacity and knowledge of civil society organization’s on petroleum laws. The gathering brought together members of civil society, government representatives, Academia, Members of Parliament and students.

 

The training is part of a series of workshops conducted by UNYDA in collaboration with Civil Society Coalition on Natural Resources (CSCNR) and supported by the Norwegian Peoples Aid (NPA) to raise awareness on the key provisions of petroleum health, safety and environmental management system and plan regulations 2015.

Environmental safety measures are often neglected in South Sudan’s extractive industries. recently there has been concerns about the risks communities living near oil fields including Thar-jath, in Unity state are exposed to especially given the devastating floods of 2021 that persist up to now. There is an alarm that the poor disposal of petroleum waste may contaminate drinking water sources. Sign of Hope, a German NGO has recently reported that its research on water contamination has confirmed the its worst fears, “The water was polluted with a witches’ brew of heavy metals, salts and other noxious substances. The source of these was quite obviously the local oil fields”.

 

Health hazards associated with the drilling of oil in South Sudan has not been given a serious consideration by the government and oil companies despite many years of advocacy by locals and environmental activists. Reports of unusual death of animals, still births and deformed babies continue to remain unresolved. And no significant measures have been taken by companies drilling oil to protect communities from negative effects of oil production.

 

Meanwhile Mr. Nhial Tiitmamer, an environmental specialist urged the civil society leaders to advocate for reforms including the implementation of Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) based on the existing laws before new projects are approved. Environmental experts have for long doubted the conduct of feasibility study of projects including an environmental impact assessment before commencement of big projects with implication on nature.

 

The dialogue is part of empowering local communities to understand the laws on petroleum, and to build stakeholders capacity to promote citizens voices in decision making on petroleum management.

 

Chapter IV, article 4.9 of the 2018 Revitalised Agreement on the Resolution of Conflict in South Sudan (R-ARCISS) provides for environmental protection and compels the government to develop comprehensive policies and legal institutional frameworks for the preservation, conservation and sustainable use of the environment. However new institutions like the Environmental Management Authority which would play a central role in this mandate are yet to be formed.

 

Oil continues to be South Sudan’s most important natural resource funding over 80% of the country’s annual budget. With large proven reserves of up to 3.5 billion barrels – the 3rd largest in sub-Saharan Africa and 90% of the oil and gas reserves untapped. The government is keen to increase production and revenues, and with strong interest from foreign investors, there is great potential for development of new wells given the return of relative peace in most areas with oil blocks but also a negative environmental and social impact given the government’s and operating companies poor track record in implementation of the petroleum related codifications.

 

Upper Nile Youth Development Association with support from NPA has been training civil society leaders, government officials on petroleum laws including the Petroleum Revenue Management Act (PRMA) 2012, Petroleum Act 2012, Health, Safety and Environmental (HSE) Regulations, and local content regulations to enhance the capacity and knowledge of civil society leaders on the petroleum legislations to increase information sharing, learning, and as well provide a collective voice to ensure accountable and responsive natural resource governance sector.

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