National, News

Finance Minister on spotlight over land deal


By William Madouk

Central Equatoria State Transitional Legislative Assembly has summoned the state minister of finance and planning, over misappropriation of government land.

Ms. Viana Kakuli Aggrey was expected on Monday to answer queries regarding an exchange of plot at Hai-Malakal worth $ 600,000 belonging to the ministry of finance, without the assembly’s consent.

But dismissal of clerk to the state Assembly prompted postponement of the sitting.

In a letter addressed to the governor, Emmanuel Adil Anthony, dated March 8, Ms. Kakuli allegedly appealed to the governor to approve the exchange of the land in question to allow her docket to continue giving services.

“This is to formally request your authorization for the above-stated subject matter. The plot in question belongs to the state ministry of finance, planning, and investment, CES,” the letter reads in part.

“In the wake of the current economic crisis, the ministry, in its regular senior management meeting No. 3/2023, resolved to offer the land to a partner in exchange for vehicles and other essential services to keep the ministry afloat,” she added.

If approved, the land will be handed over to a private firm, Quick Global Logistics Company Ltd, the letter continued.

In a purported document, Ms. Kakuli said they would be given five Toyota Hardtop cars and an amount of 100,000 US dollars for the construction of a new building.

“The firm will supply the ministry with five new Toyota Hardtop vehicles to enable the ministry to render services that require the mobility of its staff,” she added, with a payment of USD 100,000 to support the construction of the ministry’s new office,” the minister explained.

Addressing the journalists after adjournment, the Chairperson of the Specialized Committee for Information at the Assembly, James Modi Lomidi, said the sitting was postponed for today, Tuesday.

“We were to proceed with the deliberation as to the motion that is supposed to be paraded for the summons of the ministry of finance and planning in Central Equatoria State,” Modi said.

“However, because of the few administrative issues, the sitting has to be adjourned simply because the leadership has to go and be able to discuss important administrative issues that we have to put the house in order,” he added.

But it is not clear whether Central Equatoria State governor offered the finance docket a green light to sell the plot or not.




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