– South Sudan diplomats who were attending African Union meeting on June 16 were ejected unceremoniously
– The country had been sanctioned over failure to pay its annual contribution for the last three years amounting to KSh 969, 587, 174
– However, the sanctions did not deprive South Sudan of its AU membership but only suspended the country from participating in AU meetings
The African Union has suspended South Sudan from the continental body after it failed to submit its contributions for three years amounting to KSh 969, 587, 174.
The East Africa country had failed to submit its contributions leading to an embarrassing situation during a recent AU meeting where South Sudan diplomats were asked to leave.
Confirming the suspension, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday 19 said it had received the sanction from the Africa Union’s mission in South Sudan informing it of the decision to bar it from the continental body’s meetings.
Deputy Foreign Affairs spokesperson, Hakim Edward, said the sanctions do not deprive South Sudan of its AU membership but it only suspends the country from participating in AU meetings.
“We would like to confirm to the public that South Sudan is one of the countries that have been sanctioned by the AU due to lack of yearly financial contributions,
“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs would like to assure the public that it is coordinating with the ministry of finance to resolve the matter not only with the AU but with other regional bodies,” Edward said in a statement issued on Friday night.
In his letter to the Ministry of Finance, Hakeem said diplomats from the country who were attending AU meeting on June 16 were asked to leave unceremoniously over the unpaid money.
“It was so dramatic and embarrassing scene when the chairperson of the meeting stopped the meeting to inform South Sudanese diplomats that their participation was illegal as South Sudan had been sanctioned following three consecutive years of none payment,” read the letter.
For Africa’s youngest nation to continue participating in the AU affairs, it will need to clear the pending debt.
South Sudan became the 54th member of the African Union on July 27, 2011, after it attained its independence from the larger Sudan nation.
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