S. Sudan’s Kiir directs payment of UN membership arrears

South Sudan president Salva Kiir has directed the payment for membership at the United Nations, reiterating the commitment of his administration and the country to continue playing a key role in the community of nations to promote peace and security.

Speaking to Sudan Tribune on Friday, the Presidential Affairs minister Barnaba Marial Benjamin said Kiir directed the Finance ministry to pay the outstanding arrears to the UN.

Media reports show South Sudan currently owes the world body $196,130.

“This is unfortunate, but the good news is that His Excellency President General Salva Kiir Mayardit has directed the minister of Finance and Economic Planning to look into that. You know the situation of our economy but we are also aware of our obligations,” he explained.

Marial was reacting to reports that South Sudan and other countries were denied voting rights at the UN General Assembly for failure to pay arrears.

Article 19 of the UN Charter says a member in arrears in the payment contributions cannot vote in the General Assembly if the amount equals or exceeds the amount of the contributions due for the preceding two full years.

“The General Assembly may, nevertheless, permit such a member to vote if it is satisfied that the failure to pay is due to conditions beyond the control of the Member,” partly states the article.

The UN General Assembly decided that Comoros, Sao Tome, Principe, and Somalia on the list of nations in arrears, would be able to keep their voting rights. It granted the three countries the same exemption last year.

The General Assembly admitted South Sudan as the UN’s193rd member in July 2011.

Source: Sudan Tribune