Commentary, OpEd

Let Us Keep our National Currency Tidy, Avoid Writing on it

By Joseph Akim Gordon

Our national currency, the South Sudan pound is our national symbol of our sovereignty, a decade ago or so the rate of dollar to our pound was almost equal to the dollar, the value of South Sudan pound deteriorated due to the fact that we failed to develop our economy that is we did not invest enough in agriculture and other sectors of our economy. For instance, if a farmer fails to cultivate his/her land, he/she cannot be expected t to harvest because he/she did not farm so the family will remain hungry and poor.

If we want our economy to grow and prosper, we must work hard because development is not a free gift, we must engage all factors of production to enable us to realize high production. As for our local currency we must respect our currency, it is worth to note that we must keep our currency tidy.

We must all be responsible in keeping our currency clean, particularly those charcoal traders, mechanic and those in the catering business are responsible in spoiling our currency with dirt, keep your hands clean before handling the money some people write on bank notes and some make some marks on the currency as if it is their notebooks.

Other malpractices include keeping money underground as such air circulation is restricted such that the notes becoming sticky making it difficult to count, another problem includes keeping large amount in the house, which is not safe due to thefts, robbery and above all it restricts circulation of money which is not good for the economy. In another development some traders reject small notes one pound, twenty-five pounds because their value is very law, so long that it is legal currency it is a crime when a traders reject the small notes. We have criminals with illegal machine for producing counterfeit money that is illegal this a practice that is responsible for increasing the illegal money in the market, you know more money is put in circulation whenever the authorities of monetary policy are sure of the strength of the economy.

So, people who are illegally producing fake money in the market are criminals if caught must be severely penalized because they are contributing in the weakening the strength of our currency. The strength of our local currency total depends on how much we can increase production and productivity and increase our level of investment improve market infrastructure, improve feeder roads and other roads within and outside the states.

Corruption seems to have been institutionalized, let us strengthen the rule of law that can deal with cases of corruption it is likely to scare corrupt people. Good economy breeds political stability, government will be able to pay its employees timely, the employee salary structure must be revised annually, because it must match the inflation level in the market today most senior government officials get between 30-50 US$ per month not enough to cover family monthly consumption. In Juba most family have designed copying strategy in that some people have two jobs, others one leg with government and another leg in the market this is survival strategy to make two ends meet.

In conclusion we need to protect our currency keep it clean not to put any mark on the notes, we should protect money like how traders protect the US$ any small distortion of the dollar the value is reduced or rejected in the market we should be doing so to protect our currency.