Opinion

He who knows the source of a river, must know where it drains its water

By Agar Mayor Gai-Makoon

Sometimes, it is good to note certain things in life. Knowledge of things and their importance, and eventually, benefits are among things, we ought to note. We have to always know things to their fullest. Hypocrisy and taking things, for granted or as they are not, is never a good practice for a people aiming to succeed. It is rather, for those, aiming to fail. The bible, says, know things and do them as they are supposed to be done, and always be true and honest in whatever, you do.

This discourages deceptions, and half-baked-informative habit of people. The importance, of knowing things is that, it enables us to know what is good or bad for us. In other words, knowing sources of our country’s revenue makes us well acquainted with the utilization-game. And so, it goes,” he who knows the source of a river, must know where it drains”.

Why do I say this? Today (yesterday), I got a statement, stipulating the master plan; of the government to rescue the country’s dying economy. How it will do it, they know it better. It reads, “The government of South Sudan has announced plans to borrow over two hundred million US dollars from the African Export and Import Bank to cover the country’s budget deficit,” one report says. Note, “borrow money to cover the country’s budget deficit.” The statement indicates that, within a certain agreed time frame (for this matter, still not disclosed), our government will pay back the money to the bank. But then, one would ask, what will be the source of the pay-back? The answer is here, ‘’the amount projected by the Ministry was based on projections of oil prices and tax collections”, says the deputy Minister of Agriculture. It means, from oil and non-oil revenue of this country, the loan will be repaid, which truly, I can agree.  But how about this president’s statement? In July, this year, he said,” non-oil revenues are not being fully remitted into the single block account of the National Revenue Authority’’. The president admitted this money-go-pocket habit in the revenue authority himself. So, now, what has the government done, such that, they borrow money with the expectation to payback with oil and non-oil revenue money?

It would sound good and truly beneficial to this country’s population if something-for-change has happened in the South-non-oil revenue world. The otherwise, would question the trustworthiness and dignity-considerate habit, of the South Sudanese people. And perhaps, our national identity as a people who,” say and do, borrow and pay, fight and benefit, unite and prosper,” would be put to test and serious evaluation.

However, our hope would have lied here, “the government will be exploring ways and means to speedily rectify the situation so that, at the very least, it can pay monthly salaries on time,” president said. This was, few months ago. If it has happened, or not, the employees (of the government) know better. But, what I know, salaries have not been coming monthly. And if it has been because of no money in the Central bank, (which I think it is not), then, borrowing is the right choice at this time.

But my worry still is, does our government know truly where the oil and non-oil money go to? If not, then, borrowing is never the right option for this country, at this time.

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