How Aid Agencies cheat donors in the name of South Sudan

BY: Holy Crook, JUBA, JAN/13/2013, SSN;

“100 children die of hunger-related diseases every single minute in Jonglei. Save a starving child, donate a dollar!”

“Four million people will starve to death in South Sudan in the next one week. Reverse the situation: donate a dime!”

“A million people have lost sight to trachoma in Jonglei and Eastern Equatoria and another million is at risk. Help! Donate now! Every penny counts!”

“No one has toes anymore in Warrap; an army of jiggers have eaten them up. Help stop the spread to the neighboring states, donate now! Send your donations to 12345…”

“UN needs 3 trillion dollars for its overall operations in South Sudan this year!”

Those are some of the horrifying stories that frequently make headlines on local TV and FM stations and in newspapers in Europe and the Americas. The alarming headlines are backed up by eloquent young attractive women who claim to have just returned from the world’s newest country. They tell untold testimonies about the alleged dire conditions on the ground:

“You’re not going to believe what I am about to say: I went to some area deep in Eastern Equatoria. As most parts of the country are impassable by road, we trekked. We negotiated a footpath through thick forests and valleys and rivers for days. On the fifth day, we bumped into this village. The village is inhabited by pastoralists. In this community of about 1000 people, only seven have sight. Just seven people! The rest are blind! Thanks to trachoma,” tinged a female voice on radio recently.

Another visiting NGO agent, a middle-aged woman spoke on a national TV: “In a place called Akobo, women told us of how they go for days without food. They eke out the little food they gather during poor harvests. I saw them with my own eyes, eating grass like goats! They have turned into herbivorous. The situation is really bad. They need urgent help.”

A number of groups of ‘humanitarian’ souls move from door to door, city to city – campaigning, generating money by showing graphic photos of hungry skeletal elderly people; photos of Dinka, Nuer and Murle children with swollen limbs and stomachs. They tell and tell and tell the same horrible stories about South Sudanese people in the media in their insatiable quest to win philanthropists. They target filthy rich business-people and celebrities. Touched by such stories, the generous rich Whites pour billions of dollars into the accounts.

In Juba, heads of such agencies spend much of their time working on reports that show how they spent the previous budgets, why they need more funds and what they plan to do next. They write success stories in which the alleged beneficiaries praise them: “A million thanks to NGO X, it saved my life and of my children. It gave me a kilo of maize, a quarter kg of beans and a packet of table salt. This will take me a month before I resume grass eating.”

While the effort exerted by these NGOs in order to stabilize the country is highly commendable, do you think they are doing South Sudan any good? Are they really humanitarian organizations or are they commercial business entities?

Well, let’s do some brainstorming.

In reality, some, if not all of the aid agencies operating in the country, have an obligation to empower the local people. They are on the ground to – among others – impart knowledge and skills to teachable South Sudanese; be it in the health, education or business sector. They are here to redesign doctors, nurses, administrators and so on to fit the world standards. Aren’t they?

However, it seems that these agencies have ulterior motives. They do little or nothing at all to upgrade the local workforce. The managers hire foreign nationals at will. Some come from as far as Madagascar and Sierra Leone. Don’t even mention Kenyans and Ugandans because they’re locals nowadays. They’re in possession of South Sudanese nationality documents. We will talk about that some other day. They give them long-term contracts. I repeat, long-term contracts. The NGOs pay for their accommodation in Juba’s ‘seven-star’ hotels. The NGOs foot their food and drink’s bills.

With the funds raised from the West to supposedly combat jiggers in Warrap or feed malnourished children in Jonglei, ‘Kenyans and Ugandans have grown so fat such that some have necks the size of hippopotamus.’

Some walk with the help of crutches not because they got wounded in any war but because food… South Sudanese’s… has deformed them!

The NGOs have turned Juba into a kind of a holiday camp. They wine and dine every single day. If anyone blindfolded you and placed you in one of their favorite joints in Juba, you would probably think that you were in London or New York. It’s all White!

Monthly, the bosses reward themselves with huge amounts of dollars, a sum equivalent to the salaries of all the employees of an organization, ten times! They’re renting first-class residences in the city. The offices pay that. They ride chauffeured Bentleys, Coups and Jeeps.

On the other hand, the national employees take home only a few hundreds of pounds. Some of them have even become mathematicians as they divide their monthly salaries by monthly problems such as rent, food, school fees and miscellaneous of many other needs. And you always find someone who is quick to try to cheer you up with a crap like, “Be good. You’re a decent promising young man. You’re just twenty-something and you’re working in a decent office, decent job and you get decent salary.” Decent, my foot!

Do you see how the donations find their way back to the West?

Ideally, the number of the international employees in an organization should be lessened. The few White folks should be there to overlook the project. The brothers from the East Africa and beyond should be given short-term deals. They should be recruited as consultants and work with the locals. Make them ‘transfer’ their know-how to the locals. That’s it.

Anyway, for how long will this relief aid culture continue in the country? Don’t you think it’s fanning the fire of over-dependence in the country?

Free food. Free medicines. Free water. Free this. Free that. Don’t you think this is the very reason the government is reluctant to deliver basic services to people because it feels that there is no need since the agencies are ‘helping?’

MSF is there, providing healthcare. ADRA is busy digging boreholes. WFP planes still airdrop food items. USAID just built Juba-Nimule road and it looks like it is going to tarmac more roads. UNICEF builds and runs schools. Even some NGO is currently digging pit latrines in the country. Another agency distributes mosquito nets.

The more the aid agencies offer these free services, the more the South Sudan government sleeps and the more the country of South Sudan gets addicted to free things….. and more importantly, the more they spoon-feed South Sudan, the more they divert the donations. What a thriving business!

Holy Crook is a South Sudanese based in Juba. He can be reached via: holy_crook@yahoo.com

27 Comments

  1. 100 children die from related hunger diseases in single minute, which meant we have 1440 who died in every 24 hrs. No one has toes in Warrap state because of jiggers. Out from 1000, seven of them have sight. Holy crook! How much of lair are you? I wish you to satisfy me through the following questions:
    1- How many births delivered in a single minute since 100 children die in single minute in Jonglei? And for how long did the mother in jonglei spend when she is pregnant? Is there any child remaining in jonglei since 100 die in every single minute? Are the people of jonglei all handicups or they don’t know how to cultivate to eradicate the hunger which kill their children?
    2- Do the people of Warrap have no toes all even the state governor? How shall those seven out of 1000 manage to nurse the big numbers with no sight?
    If he doesn’t aswer me, I wish the person from those states of Warrap and Jonglei to answer me whether what the man said is true or not. I only know jigger cases in western Equatoria but not Warrap.

    • Jong-rac says:

      Dengor, be a good reader. The author has hidden the message. Think!

      • Anna Tabaan says:

        Dengor, it’s all figurative, as Jong-rac said, Think! Your comment is not relevant. It’s an allegoric illusion of the situation and has no bearing at all on the states mentioned. Don’t take it personally!

  2. Anyangaliec says:

    What’s a patriot? Well done ‘Holy Crook’. For me personally, I don’t blame the NGOs, but our government. These abuses are happening because there are no proper laws.

    • tutbol says:

      Sounds great; our people are waking from their snoozes; and are now seeing who the NGOs really are. The NGOs are re-packaged by the Western world as their neo-colonisation governments of their own in the world countries and South Sudan is a country of illiterates, we are often told and is a 21st century NGOs Eldorado. Our government officials often prove their points for their scant knowledge of the global world scheme of things. And NGOs ruin countries; sometimes; when they’re faced with the facts of their ulterior motives, they change colours and employ the natives who they can use to topple the governments which they cannot mould to their interests. Some NGOs like Oxfam-UK are even emboldened to talk politics for Shutting down our oil; when we know, it is the only source of our revenue. Our government must know that our country is wanted by many big powerful nations to another Eastern Congo so that the BIG BOYS HEISTS, in the midst of the mess. But anyway, what can ordinary citizens do when they have sheep as leaders?

  3. Sunday Manyang says:

    What a flawed report! “100 children dying due to hunger-related diseases every minute in Jonglei”. This is great lie I have ever witnessed documented. There are 60 minutes in one hour and 24 hours a day. Let us do simple mathematics. 100 children x 60 minutes x 24 hours x 30 days will give us 4,320,000 children dying in a month and what is the population of Jonglei State and that of South Sudan? What are you communicating to us, Holy Crook, in your estimation?

  4. Andrew Jienge says:

    Akuei and his brother Manyang, you have a very thick skull, only you guys who don’t get the whole story. Think outside the box – fat cats! You are from Bahr el Ghazel, ain’t you and Gogerial in particular?! Ooh, may be you want to brand this guy as a liar because he revealed your uncles as people behind our stolen $4 billions Dura saga?!
    Holy Crook – keep up the good work you’re doing, and take good care of yourself, for they are savages!
    We need more of your caliber for our country – Aluta continua!

    • Sunday says:

      Dear Andrew,
      Thanks for having understood Holy Crook message better than many of us who failed to get. I wish u well in getting the funds to enrich yourself with him just like the 75 government officials accused of having stolen 4 billion. I don’t support lies but for u it seems to be where u derived your maximum utility that put u to hate those who stole 4 billion and u anoint with oil those trying to cheat donors. Go ahead, Holy Crook will give u a share when he gets his project of falsification funded.

  5. PanKon says:

    Holy Crook is simply telling what the So Called Aid agencies do to solicit funds in the name of South Sudan.
    In a country where Government is extremely weak, all the damned things happen and the few enlightened suffer ulcers… NGOs must be thoroughly confronted to explain what they deliver to South Sudanese. Else, they should be expelled.

  6. Nibs says:

    NGOs are taking advantage of an incompetent government that failed to check their performances. Few NGOs are genuine and most are here to extort monies. The government must investigate them thoroughly and expel thugs among them. They’re portraying south Sudan badly at the global arena.

  7. nypuata says:

    let’s not crack our heads. This is just an article from a crook who claimed to be holy. what is different between him and the so called NGOs? I think holy crook is an agent of those NGOs. Has this so called holy crook one day put his butts down and held a hoe like many people in south Sudan to cultivate and produce food? Sure he hasn’t. To hell with him. He is a real poor person who wants to rely on food aid from outside.

  8. Holy crook, where is da answer? We are ready to ask you more.

    • Anna Tabaan says:

      Manut’
      The answer is all there – make favorable laws for citizens, but the execution is the problem. The laws are there, but the same lawmakers either break or don’t implement those laws.
      Holy Crook, you forgot the other issues:
      1. Night drivers, who drive these expatriates around, not to work but to nightclubs to meet with boyfriends/girlfriends and friends, past working hours, past midnight, expect these drivers to pack the cars and go home, should I give the names of those NGOs?
      2. Advertise for jobs and make it open for nationals and internationals. You will say there are no qualified South Sudanese and then reward it to somebody you already know. If you do find a qualified South Sudanese, make sure you tell them, they are overqualified for the job and will not be happy with the little salary you are paying.
      3. When you look at some NGOs, you will realize most of these international staff know each other. Somebody is a sister to somebody’s friend, a relative from the village, from the same tribe, same town… one who will be an accomplice in helping him siphon money professionally. Kenyans are experienced in this. One Kenyan once told me, “it isn’t about helping the people of South Sudan, it’s about how much money one is making in a short time. This is what it is all about. Business.”
      4. Have you ever seen a Finance Director in an NGO who is a South Sudanese? If you see one please let me know. The rule of thumb is make sure, South Sudanese staff never know the budget for this project. In fact they should never see it. Why? Because the budget is in foreign currency. So for example if you get paid SSP900 as a project officer, on the budget your salary is $900. When you insist on seeing the budget, you will get warnings and they frustrate you until you either resign or they find a reason to fire you
      5. Why you cannot be in the SMT,( senior management team)? is because you will know the above secrets and expose them.

  9. Bro, Manut Michael Lual, I don’t really understand what the man want to say. To give false information doesn’t let the NGOs to give the support without first conducting an assessement, to find out whether the information is accurate or not. Note also brother Manut, that i came back from Khartoum where I have gone for my medical treatment. I am currently in Juba.

  10. Nibs says:

    Why is it difficult for you guys to understand Holly Crook’s article? He is simply exposing how NGOs beg for money abroad in the pretext of helping south Sudanese. These NGOs talk ill about south Sudanese in order to get funds which they use to enrich themselves.

  11. maref says:

    I wonder why some people are still wondering to understand what mr Crook Holy has put across, while he has put everything we want know together. It is a matter of understanding otherwise mr Crook is talking how these aid agents are always busy giving false reports in order to get funds, they then use that fund on accommodating foreigners instead of spending it rightfully. I got to tell my brothers to learn how to comprehend messages correctly otherwise personal letter would be hard to read it.

  12. Oooooh! brother, you are now south Sudan, thank God for that. I am still in Nairobi brother. And i will leave on Friday morning to Juba. For the discussion they just need to blindfold the people but what we didn’t observes in Rss. As he say who is the smt? I can say we have Aken in Goal ss and Moses Adiga in w.h.o ss are the not ss?

  13. South Mole says:

    Employment should be carried out through South Sudan’s Labour Office or Ministry of Human Resources to cut down on this practice.

  14. Anyangaliec says:

    Dengor Akuei,
    Why not in Juba, instead of Khartoum? I guess, you know now why people all over the Country are complaining?

  15. Kenyi Alex says:

    Anna Taban,
    I recommend you to work either with Labor or RRC because of this deep information. In my NGO there are three inscriptions on each Country Director’s Computer South Sudan widely. This information I got last week when I was reassigned a CD Computer;
    -All South Sudanese have forged Academic transcripts. Call it Certificate, Diploma, Degree or Masters.
    -All South Sudanese like to work for high pay!
    -All South Sudanese are uneducated!
    Alas, what a generalization! Nibs and Anna have summed it all. What can we do?
    Since approved Budget is different from paid Budget, I have evidence.
    -They give big or complicated titles to claim Work permit, like logistic advisory, coordinator or Finance Supervisor, Coordinator, Manager to mean accountant.
    -They nowadays get jobs within South Sudan once terminated.

  16. Dunia Arop says:

    It’s very shameful for ADRA to cheat donors. But not only donors they are even cheating the communities of south Sudan in general. Particularly in Warrap state in 2002 they were working in Twic county and they are doing nothing up to now. So i hope the donors should not confuse again to give fund to this unless organisation.

  17. Dunia,
    ADRA was in Twic since 1998 up to date. And they did nothing.

  18. Good message was written by all brothers for the suffering in Jonglei state concerning about 100 children dying of hunger; let me advise you people of South Sudan our Government is not qualified to lead the RSS.
    they don’t care about citizens of South Sudan and they don’t know what they’re doing; the only thing our leaders want the petroleum of South Sudan to be opened and to consume the money without human development or agriculture of our land.
    why not the government of South Sudan cultivate the land of New RSS.
    They take the money of the Nation outside the country to Australia and USA because their children are not present in South Sudan; thank you my poor people, God will come for and end the SPLA/SPLM Oyee.
    Kueth Rout Duoth

  19. Bol says:

    I thank the writer because he has enlightened us, the NGOS are not doing any thing worth while. Moreover, nobody is evaluating their activities, they ought to be regulated intensively so that those that are not performing well to the expected level should be chased out. In regards to employment, i have been so critical of their existence in Republic of South Sudan in my article on this website. if they can tell lies ‘100 children die every minute, then what is the population of Jonglei state? besides, Tuktuk (jiggers are not in warrap.” The ministry of public service should call heads of respective NGOs and try to devise strong rules against such defamation claims, they should be told to do on job training so that inexperienced south Sudanese can take over the high ranking positions that the foreigners now hold, those who are out the NGOS’ jobs should register with ministry so that, whenever the NGO wants to recruit outside south Sudan, it must review the quality of interested applicants locally.
    I am of a view that diaspora workforce needed to be considered by NGOS through our embassies, this can only work if it is our government policy.

  20. Puoch Riek Deng says:

    Comrades, bro. Holy Crook is trying to narrate to us what aid agencies are doing to get funds in the name of South Sudan by telling all lies, white lies in Europe and America to convince donors to give more money which in the end, ends up in their pockets here in juba.
    These aid agencies working inside south Sudan have to be audited like any other institution coz this money is meant for South Sudan and we have to know where this money has gone at the end of the project.
    No country in the world has ever been built or developed by the aid agencies. We have to impose strict laws on these business-oriented aid agencies.

  21. Lewi A. Mursale says:

    What if? Our people first and our government second just do not mind these AID Agencies. Aid had been there since 1970s and 80s but the situation of not only South Sudan but also of all those who depend on Aid still worsened. Aid and its use is same as that of corruption in South Sudan.
    Alternatively we have to depend on ourselves and leave them eat what they sow. Aren’t we resources-rich enough to have a piece of cake for everybody in this nation?

  22. It feels bad when somebody can not extract a meaning out of an article like this.i wonder if those who attack the writer have a basic literature skill of analysing a piece of writing like this.

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