Student’s coronavirus fund goes missing in Morocco

By Manyuon Mayen Manyuon

South Sudanese Students under government scholarship in Morocco are stranded after the Coronavirus emergency funds meant for them went missing.

The Fund was part of the 3 million U.S dollars approved by the government to support students in foreign countries during the lockdown over the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The 343 South Sudanese students in Morocco were allocated a share of $ 33,000.

In a very more complicated and complex revelation, the students said they haven’t receive any cash since April, as both the South Sudan Embassy in Morocco and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation could not trace where the money went.

Ambrose Madut Madut, South Sudanese Students Union’s President in Morocco exposed in a communiqué issued on Tuesday that even though money was transacted to the Embassy’s account in May, they have not received the money up to date.

“Two diplomats in the Embassy’s Office, Mr. John Majak, Mr. Jukeria Andrea and I went to the Bank and we were unable to withdraw the money because the Bank said the money was huge and it was sent individually without official documentation from South Sudan,” he said.

Based on the Bank’s restrictions, the money was sent back to South Sudan on 29th May after a full week follow up according to the Union’s President.

An authentic document directed to South Sudan Mission in Morocco signed by Amb. Samuel Luate Lominsuk, Director General of Administration and Finance indicates the money which was sent and resent back to the Ministry’s account was not visible in the account up to this week.

“As of today (22nd June), a representative from the Department of Finance of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs went to the Bank and found that the money has not been accredited to the Ministry’s account,” the statement reads.

The Director General added “The Ministry will continue to follow up this case and will update you (students) of the status accordingly.”

Mr. Madut stated that they were now worried after learning the money was not received back at the Ministry’s account in South Sudan.

He said they received a letter from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation notifying them that the money was not received.

“This really makes us so worried and stranded. Therefore, I suggest and humbly request that there should be seriousness in follow up and if that money is received back in South Sudan,” he added.

Madut stressed the money should be sent individually to the students since there was communication disparity between the two institutions.

“We have already sent our names and passport numbers if there is no understanding between South Sudan and Morocco in transacting the huge funds of such a kind,”

 “The reason why this money was budgeted for us, still exist; COVID-19 and the lockdown.”

Last month, South Sudanese students in Ethiopia were repatriated after they disagreed with Embassy’s officials on the support funds issue.

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