and http://cccnt.com.au/wp-content/plugins/the-events-calendar/src/deprecated/tribe_register_meta.php geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 200%;”>“The national army SPLA and members of other organized forces are defecting to our forces in large numbers because we have money to pay as salaries, treat ” said the rebel outfit’s spokesperson, Brig Gen Lul Ruai Koang.
The statement raises fears that foreign forces aimed at destabilising South Sudan could be providing a hand to Machar and his followers who attempted to overthrow Kiir’s government in December last year.
It also follows reports that the Council of Ministers has been reviewing reports that SPLM/SPLA Forces are circulating fake notes which they looted from different currency units to fighters in Upper Nile State.
However, Koang said “this allegation is completely not true and is meant to divert public attention from real issues. The latest government propaganda is aimed finding someone to blame once the rapidly depreciating local currency becomes worthless.”
He said after oil shutdown in 2012, Kiir introduced austerity measures to avoid economic meltdown with a view of lifting up such measures once oil production resumes.
When production resumed in 2013, hopes were high that life shattering austerity measures would be lifted and the consumer nation will once again regain lost economic purchasing power.
“However,” said Koang in a statement to Chimpreports, “the much anticipated lifting of austerity measures did not materialize instead the nation received shocking news from none other than President Kiir himself that revenues from oil sales would be used to service $4.6 USD Billion loan borrowed during the same period.”
He added: “The million dollar question every ordinary South Sudanese citizen asked at the time of revelation was: how was the money used? To date, no explanation was given let alone a satisfactory one.”
While rebels attribute the economic woes of South Sudan to Kiir, observers say the country was slowly registering economic progress courtesy of booming regional trade and oil exports until Machar attempted a coup.
Billions of taxpayers’ money would later be channelled to the Defence Ministry and diplomatic efforts to protect the nation from slipping into anarchy.
Efforts to broker a peace deal between the rebels and Juba have since failed with the fighters launching attacks on Malakal and other towns in Upper Nile.