Missing medical supplies recovered, Mr. Aldo Ajou was a mastermind
By SIIR* Group
January 3, 2006 (SIIR)—When the need for medical help has increased drastically in part due to a huge influx of refugees and IDPs to South Sudan following the signing of CPA, health coordinator for Northern Bahr el Ghazal State, Mr. Mathiang Kon Nyang, had asked a ministry of health on November 17, 2005 in a letter dated 15 of the same month to provide his state with three-month worth of medical supplies costing 45 million Sudanese Pound (approximately 20,000 US dollars).
Mr. Mathiang had hoped that if his request was approved he would be officially notified so as to arrange for transport. Unfortunately, Mr. Mathiang was stunned in disbelieve when he learned that the medical supplies he requested were taken by an unauthorized person and shipped to undisclosed location.
At the newsbreak, citizens of Aweil were informed including Aweil members of SIIR. Grave as it was, the SIIR took it seriously to research and investigate the issue with intention to leave no stone unturned. Our findings—supported with attached two documents—are as follow:
1. Mr. Aldo Ajou and his group involvement
At the time when official representative of Northern Bahr el Ghazal was waiting to receive what he requested from ministry of health, Mr. Aldo Ajou Deng and his group got the information of the medicines’ whereabouts. So, he thought it was a good timing to snatch the supply before Mr. Mathiang could get to them. As documented by MPs in their letter of complaint addressed to Minister of Health, it’s clear that Mr. Aldo had talked to the director responsible for health supplies who agreed to hand over Aweil’s quota to his representative, Mr. Anguei Akot—also a National Congress member.
2. Nationalistic role of our Honourable Members of Parliament,
On December 27, 2005, MPs of Northern Bahr el Ghazal, both national and regional, learned about mysterious disappearance of medicines. Upon going to where the supplies were taken from, they were told that Mr. Aldo had authorized someone to pick up the supplies. Under intense pressure from the MPs, the officials at medical supplies headquarters in Khartoum disclosed the identity of a person to whom the stocks were released as Mr. Anguei Akot a dubious representative of Mr. Aldo Ajou. To avoid being caught red-handed, Mr. Aldo Ajou told furious Aweil citizens that the medical shipment was destined to Aweil as a donation from his National Congress Party (NCP). Many MPs inquired how could an official share allocated to a State turn out to be property of a single party to give away as a donation?
Being suspicious and unsatisfied by Mr. Aldo’s circumlocutory answers, our diligent, selfless MPs worked around the clock to trace and return the stolen supplies to the rightful owners: citizens of Aweil. As fruits of their hard work, the medical supplies were recovered in el Obeid, Northern Kordofan, under the care of Aldo’s representative, who was told to leave medicines alone or face embarrassing arrest by the police. His fate is yet to be determined by the court (SIIR will update those concerned as soon as we receive a full detail).
It’s worth mentioning that without intervention of Honourable MPs (Mr. Ayii Ayii Akol, Mr. Longar Awar Ring, Mr. Anguei Deng Deng, among others), and augmented by astute, timely intervention of Minister of Health, the previously missing medical supplies would have been taken to Aweil ostensibly as a donation by the National congress at best, or found themselves in burning sun of a black market at worst.
3 Intervention of Minister of Health, Dr. Tabitha Botrous Sokaya
Dr. Tabitha Botrous Sokaya’s intervention by ordering Mr. Aldo Ajou Deng’s representative to relinquish the medicines that he attempted to steal, is commendable and should serve as an example to other ministers who may find themselves in a similar situation in the future.
Finally, as SIIR vigorously pursues the anti-corruption war previously declared by President of South Sudan, Lt-General Salva Kiir Mayardit, we urge people of the New Sudan to be vigilant, ready and wiling to report any acts of corruption, no matter how trivial it might be, or who commits it irrespective of age, position in the government, etc. Further, we appeal to leadership of National Congress party (NCP) to suspend its two MPS (Mr. Aldo and Mr. Anguei Akot) until a thorough investigation is completed. Otherwise, they must be ready to accept zero seats in upcoming elections in Northern Bahr el Ghazal state and probably others.
SIIR ultimate goal, among others, is total eradication of corruption. Together, let’s Say no to corruption!
*Sudan Independent Investigators and Researchers (SIIR) Group
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