Inside Albino’s plan to restore soiled humanitarian affairs

By William Madouk

The newly appointed minister of Humanitarian Affairs & Disaster Management, Albino Akol has pledged to restore donors’ lost trust and revamp speedy aids delivery to the needy by applying some corrections.

Speaking during welcoming ceremony to assume his duty yesterday, Akol stated that he is not coming to make changes but will apply some corrections as per legal documents attached to the ministry.

Minister Akol said, he will be carrying along the ‘constitution’ and ‘agreement’ plus other legal framework to do necessary changes that might be required for effectiveness of his docket.

“These two documents are the driving force in the correction for whatever correction we will make, we will use these two documents,” Akol said.

“I will make sure no one is victimized when I am applying these supreme laws as well as another framework in connection with the mandate of this ministry,” he added.

He called on the staff of the ministry of Humanitarian Affairs to show him where they stood in order for him to lay his own brick on what was already built.

“Our work shall be directional for the interest of the people of South Sudan and this is a sincere talk, what we shall do here in the ministry must be directed to the interest of people of South Sudan,” he affirmed.

The minister pledged to collaborate with international partners to mobilize funds to address humanitarian challenges in South Sudan to save lives, restore dignity of vulnerable groups.   

“I promise to tirelessly work in hand in hand with you [staff] and partners to mobilize and ensure that the humanitarian assistance are delivered to the needy without discrimination,” Akol echoed.

“We shall work to coordinate the efforts to manage possible disaster that may affect any citizen as a result of natural or manmade one,” he continued.

Akol hinted that with cooperation the ministry would be able to refurbish missing confidence among donors once again.

“I was told that our partners have stopped some of the services because of losing trust on our government through this ministry. So, it is our responsibility to get it back,” he noted.

According to him, immediate establishment of Special Reconstruction funds could address the plea of internally displaced persons and refugees to return back home.

“To response to expectation that is needed from me that I should work very hard to return our IPDs and refugees back to their original places, this fund must be established,” he cited.

Akol also said the establishment of this Special fund will positively contribute in restoring lost trust not only for humanitarian partners but also for needy people of South Sudan who have been waiting for such assistances.

Minister Akol however decried low budget allocation that doesn’t include emergency and early warning funds but vow to make sure that it’s realized in upcoming budget.

Chapter 3, Article 2 of the peace agreement is about the establishment of a Special Reconstruction Fund.

The supporters of this fund will include friendly countries that have pledged to help South Sudan recover from the war.

The fund will be administered by a committee consisting of 23 members, including representatives of the World Bank, the African Development Bank, EU, AU, UK, China, the Troika and from South Sudan.

The expenses of the fund will be shared by the government and the foreign donors. South Sudan’s national government will be required to provide not less than $100 million per year throughout the transitional period.

UNOCHA report, estimated that almost 9.4 million people are expected to have humanitarian or protection needs in 2023, an increase of half a million people since last year.

Mr. Akol was appointed to replace the former minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Peter Mayen Majongdit, who was removed in a presidential decree read on state radio/TV (SSBC) on January 31, 2022.

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