Work for citizens’ interest, Kiir tells new bank boss

President Salva Kiir Mayardit addressing the newly sworn-in governor of the Bank of South Sudan and his two deputies on Friday at State house J1(Photo Courtesy: Presidential Press Unit)

By Bida Elly David

President Salva Kiir Mayardit has called on the newly appointed governor of the Bank of South Sudan (BOSS) and his two deputies to work for the interest of the citizens by doing what is right for the people.

He made the directives on Friday morning, during the swearing in ceremony of Johnny Ohisa Damian as the Governor of the Bank of South Sudan (BOSS), along with Addis Ababa Othow Akongdit, as 1st Deputy Governor and John Maciek Acuoth, 2nd Deputy Governor of the Central Bank.

The oath taking was administered in the State house J1 by the Chief Justice, Chan Reech Madut.

Speaking during the swearing in ceremony, President Salva Kiir urged the newly entrusted officials at the Central Bank to do what is right for the interest of the people of South Sudan, regardless of some people who don’t like it.

He alerted the new appointees of the challenges that lay ahead of them, noting it is not an easy task they are taking on.

President Kiir reserved his compliments for the new BOSS governors arguing that congratulating them before they perform their duties successfully is needless.

The President however encouraged the Bank governor to let their work speak for itself.

President Salva Kiir appointed Johnny Ohisa Damian as the new Central Bank governor succeeding his predecessor Moses Makur Deng after he was recently removed from his duties.

This development came in a Presidential decree issued by the President on Thursday evening read over the State run broadcaster SSBC after noticing the capabilities of the successor during his probation period while acting as the caretaker governor of the Bank of South Sudan after Makur was axed.

President Kiir this month axed the former governor of the Bank of South Sudan, Moses Makur together with the former Minister of Finance Agak Achuil amid the country’s runaway hyperinflation.

The former heads of the financial dockets were axed after continuous economic recession dominated by the appreciation of the US dollars against South Sudanese pounds leaving the market position under the state of jeopardy.

The former boss of the Central Bank had tried to use auction of more foreign currency into the money market as an instrument to strengthen the value of the local currency but despite most of these trials, the method contributed less in transforming the money market.

The incumbent governor who gained trust from the President  for his appointment served as the first Deputy Governor in charge of policy and banking at the Central Bank in 2021. He also served as an acting governor after his predecessor was axed following decline in the Country’s economic position.

Damian also worked as a managing Director in charge of international commercial bank and served the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) in Sudan, Kenya and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) at the same position.

At a separate republican decree, President Kiir also relieved the first deputy of the Central Bank and appointed the managing director of equity bank Mr Addis Ababa Othow to the position of the first deputy governor of the Bank.

Addressing the sworn-in BOSS officials, the Minister of Cabinet Affairs, Dr. Martin Elia Lomuro said “You are a team of young professionals and if you don’t succeed, it will be unfortunate.”

The Cabinet Affairs Minister advised the group to join hands with the President, in his priority to provide the necessary financial services to the people.

“The President is making changes because he wants services to be delivered to the people.” stressed Dr. Lomuro. “We don’t want to hear stories of reforms, all we need to hear and see are the results in the financial sector,” he added.

Meanwhile an economic analyst welcomed the decision taken by the President appointing Damian to the position after realizing future potential and capability he has towards running the Country’s Bank.

Speaking to No.1Citizen Daily Newspaper yesterday, Abraham Matoch, an economic analyst urged the new governor to control all commercial banks in regards to circulation of money in the market as well as suggesting allocation of loans to the investors and farmers to boost domestic production.

He said the new governor must ensure introduction of fiscal and monetary policy that will enable the local currency to gain value instead of losing.

“We need to see that our currency has the value and he should ensure to introduce gold. That gold will be given to the International monetary fund (IMF) as collateral that will make our currency stronger,” he underscored.

Matoch underlined that the policy of leaving the Country to run a free market economy was one of the factors that contributed to the current economic recession since monopolists take advantage of dominating businesses with effective inflation.

He reiterated much need for the newly born Central bank to ensure shifting the Country from free market economy into central economic system where government controls the market.

“This wrong policy of having a Country of free economy or free market economy has to be addressed by the Central bank since we are still a developing economy. He should come up with policies that will stimulate the development of the economy and these free businesses of the market where monopolists dominate have to be controlled in a way of fixing prices that should be adhered to by all traders,” he said.

Matoch added that oil is a volatile resource that the Country will not depend on unless a stabilization account is created specifically for covering other gaps for uncertainties like serving the purpose meeting miscellaneous.

He finally said that auctioning more dollars into the market would not transform the crippled economy into better rather it jeopardizes.

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