National, News

HUNGER CRISIS; Parliament summons Economic Cluster

By Bida Elly David


South Sudan National Assembly has summoned Economic Cluster to explain about high cost of goods in the country.

The Assembly reached the resolution after a lawmaker representing Mayom County of Unity State, presented an urgent motion on the looming hunger in the state with little or no intervention.

  1. Stephen Bol Ley, under the SPLM-IO ticket, said over 200,000–250,000 refugees and returnees in Mayom County are facing a dire humanitarian crisis.

He said the returnees lack food, shelter, or medical services.

“These people are hosted in locations where there are no economic activities and traditional survival means have been destroyed by climate-related disasters and conflicts. Now in records, people die on a daily basis as a result of hunger in Mayom County,” the MP shockingly alleged.

He reiterated the need for urgent intervention to alleviate the suffering of those citizens facing starvation.

“The situation is serious and requires an emergency response with food and other basic supplies to prevent hunger in the short term and help the communities build resilience against food insecurity due to natural and man-made disasters,” he added.

In his presentation, the legislator echoed that the ongoing food insecurity affects not only Mayom County but the entire country.

Joseph Lual, an MP from Warrap State under the SPLM ticket, said the imminent hunger situation across the country will intensify if not quickly mitigated.

“I second the summons of the economic cluster because it consists of a group of ministers who believe that they are making plans that produce changes; they should come and tell us their plan for this dangerous situation before people die,” Lual submitted.

He challenged the executive for having failed the country’s economy.

The lawmaker argued that South Sudan has a good trade image through oil, but there is no benefit that the citizens get from its revenues.

“South Sudan is one of the African countries that produces a lot of oil; the natural resources, especially the minerals, are controlled, mined, or explored by foreign companies, not the government,” he said.

“The oil that is supposed to be managed as government property has been turned into cargo that has fallen into the hands of traders; the traders are the ones selling our oil; the money goes to their account, and they hand it to the government,” he noted.

Augustine Akol Arop, an MP representing Warrap State under SPLM, expressed pity for the Mayom vulnerable population.

“This means that something worse is going to happen, and also due to the result of the flood happening there, it resulted in the death of livestock, and with this, it is going to bring another climate issue,” he hinted.

After thorough deliberation, the national assembly resolved the need for the economic cluster headed by Vice President, Dr. James Wani Igga, and line ministries to appear before the house for grilling.

Although there was resistance from the presiding speaker, the lawmakers challenged him, saying the parliament is entitled to summon anybody except the President of the nation.

Finally, the second deputy speaker, Rt. Hon. Parmena Awerial ruled that the parliament summon the economic cluster, including the chair as well as the minister of humanitarian affairs and disaster management.

Hon. Awerial stated that a letter will soon be addressed to the officials to ensure they appear before the parliament to answer lawmakers’ queries.


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