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SOUTH SUDAN POLICE IS EXTORTING MONEY FROM FOREIGNERS

Juba, 15 February 2019; South Sudan police and other law enforcement agents have been accused of extorting unnecessary money out of foreigners living in the war-torn nation. 

Some of the foreigners who spoke to this reporter in the condition of anonymity have expressed that anxieties and dissatisfactory how South Sudan's police extort money illegally.  A Ugandan businesswoman who only identified herself as Fatima said she was harshly been arrested while she still has a week-long valued visa on her passport. Fatima said she was made to pay 12.000 South Sudan Pound, while the corrupt official only wrote 1000SSP on the receipt issued to her. She showed this reporter copy of the receipt issued to her by an agent working in the Department of Passport and National, the receipt shows she only paid 1.000SSP, SSLN could not publish the copy of her receipt to protect her identity. 

Another Ugandan businessman who identified himself as Kizza said he has paid for his visa from the entrance port of Nimule, yet after arriving in Juba on Sunday last week he was arrested and made to pay 3.000 SSP for not having supported document. Mr.  

Mr. Kizza said according to the report issued by South Sudan immigration department, foreigners living in the country have till 31 March to register, Kizza wondered how the police are now hunting and targeting foreigners even though they the foreigners have followed the law by responding to the call to register while some of them have valued visas. 

A Kenya lady selling hardware in Konyo-konyo market in Juba echoed and backed the statement of her Ugandan colleagues. she says South Sudan should know how to treat foreigners well, as they the South Sudanese have enjoyed warm receptions in Kenya, Uganda, and other neighboring countries for decades and have continued to enjoy the hospitalities accorded to them to this date in neighboring countries. “Do unto others what you would like others to do unto you,” she said.

Meanwhile, South Sudan police spokesperson Daniel Justin acknowledged that as police they do receive many complaints about mistreatment and extortion of money from foreigners by police forces and other state agents.

Despite several complaints and reports of extortion of money from foreigners by police, the force has done nothing to bring to book the criminal elements within the police forces. 

Between Nimule and Juba police traffic officers and regular police and nation's army have erected more than ten roadblocks, and foreigners have been subjected to high extortion sometimes detention in harsh and unfriendly condition if they failed to meet the terms of payment or extortion. 

J. Roberts Swaka 

SSLN 

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