In 2005 immediately after the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) which ended decades long struggle of the Southern Sudanese people, the then Government of South Sudan (GoSS) reached out to East African countries to help Southern Sudan with skilled workforce to start the reconstruction of the region that was devastated by the decades of civil war between the SPLM/A and successive Khartoum regimes.
Southern Sudan opened its doors and thousands of East Africans rushed in looking for greener pastures. The influx of foreigners into the new country has had its bad effects.
Most of Ugandans living at the border with South Sudan and share tribal names like Acholi, Madi and others took advantage of the situation and faked identities to claim being South Sudanese in order to get jobs at the government institutions and favours compared to other Ugandans who have come to work as foreigners.
Some South Sudanese people have always raised this issue with the government but little has been done so far.
Hot in Juba is currently conducting a series of investigative reports and exposés intended to expose suspected Ugandans who have acquired fake identities in order to get lucrative government and humanitarian NGO jobs at the expense of South Sudanese nationals who are deemed as unqualified.
One of these people is the mysterious girl named Animu Athiei, who represented South Sudan at the UN-Women Summit in New York City, USA in March this year and most recently the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) which was graced by the USA president Barrack Obama in Nairobi, Kenya.
She claims to be a South Sudanese and has worked closely with government officials, she hangs out with kids of “nas kubar” but according to our sources at Daily South Sudan Events, she is a Ugandan and probably a spy.
Hot in Juba managed to obtain copies of her passports both the Ugandan and South Sudanese ones which clearly indicate she is a fraudster. She has been involved in many government activities and she claims to work for South Sudanese Women Empowerment Network (SSWEN), an organisation headed by former musician Paleki Mathew. Our sources at the SSWEN have denied her claims. Another source has also told us that Animu claims to work at the Japan Embassy and JICA.
“The US embassy nominated her to represent South Sudan at GES 2015 and it was an order from a senior counsel or the ambassador,” said an informant at the US embassy.
In 2012, she was taken to court for failing to pay her bills. She has been staying at Logali House for the last four years before she moved to a newly built mansion in Gudele and that brings us to the question where is she getting the money to pay for the hotel for the last four years, a hotel that goes for $250 a night?
Animu is said to be multilingual, knowing more than 5 international languages which gives her an upper hand in getting jobs as translator to many none English speaking foreign diplomats and dignitaries visiting the country. We are however told she doesn’t speak Arabic. She has no known relatives in South Sudan according to our sources close to her. She is known to be very social and found at most social events in Juba. There are also claims that she is being protected and catered for by some big guys in the government, claims Hot in Juba could not independently verify.
Recently, she was accused of hacking into Japanese International Corporation Agency (JICA) staff computers, trying to access Japanese government classified information through hacking method called SQL injection.
We sought a comment from an official from the Ministry of Labour whether the government was aware of the foreigners disguised as South Sudanese in order to get jobs meant for South Sudanese citizens.
The official admitted there has been cases of Ugandans arrested at Immigration Department trying to unlawfully obtain South Sudanese passports and national identification cards.
“Yes, I heard there were such cases at the directorate of passports and immigration but there is no system yet in place to identify these individuals because most of them claim to be Acholi, so this remains a challenge to the government,” the official who requested not to be named said.
We have reached out to Animu for a comment but she has not responded to our queries.
These questions remain to be answered: Is Animu Athiei really a South Sudanese? Is South Sudan safe with alleged foreign individuals having access to sensitive information? Why is government not acting on the these cases of alleged Ugandan fraudsters in the country when some people in authority know very well they are taking jobs meant for South Sudanese which leads to unemployment of nationals?
Check out her passports:
( Note: She indicated that she was born in Juba, work at Monterrey Institute of Int’ Studies, a University in California, USA)
Note: She was witnessed by former commissioner of Morobo County, Ofeni Ngota when she was getting the passport.
Credit: Daily South Sudan Events