South Sudan Finance and Economic Planning Minister Minister Kosti Manibe Ngai. Gurtong/ Waakhe Simon Wudu]
By Waakhe Simon Wudu
JUBA, 06 June 2012 [Gurtong] – The National Council of Ministers has also passed measures aimed at ensuring effective utilisation of funds including increasing collections on non-oil revenue to supplement income from oil.
Government spokesman Dr Marial Benjamin told the press that the Finance Minister Kosti Manibe Ngai has been instructed to operate within the approved budget.
The meeting was chaired by President Salva Kiir and his Deputy Dr Riek Machar.
Once passed by the cabinet the budget will await ratification by the South Sudan National Assembly that resumes sittings on 10th this month.
This will be the biggest budget to be approved by South Sudan since the establishment of the semi-autonomous government in 2005.
“The Ministers also stressed that the non-oil revenues must be increased by implementing improved tax policies for instance increasing taxes on other items like alcohol and cigarettes”, said Dr Marial.
He said the Council has also stressed that the Ministers should take concrete actions to clean the payroll systems in their various institutions to ensure monies are appropriately used.
“One of the commitments passed is that salaries will be paid through electronic systems where the civil servants in the government will be required to be paid through their bank accounts except the Ministry of Defense which will be organised in a different way in light of the current war with the soldiers in the frontline”, he added.
He said the new payment system will be effected in July.