Why the new Bank of South Sudan headquarters will transform financial sector

As one passes along the Juba-Yei road, a magnificent 12-floor giant tower invites attention.
Photo shows the 12-floor storied building that will house the new headquarters of the Bank of South Sudan.

By Denis Ejulu

As one passes along the Juba-Yei road, a magnificent 12-floor giant tower invites attention.

The building located in Khor Williang suburb, is a poster child of the Bank of South Sudan in it’s bid to transform the nascent financial sector of the country.

The Bank of South Sudan contracted Chinese firm Shandong Hi-Speed Group Co. Ltd (SDHS) to build the new headquarters. The construction commenced in February 2022, and the management of the central bank has tasked the contractor to complete work by June this year.

According to James Alic Garang, the Governor of the Bank of South Sudan, the building will help accelerate South Sudan’s journey to meet key monetary requirements under the East African Community (EAC).

The plan to construct the new headquarters was mooted by Alic’s predecessors and he has been the man to implement it.

“So for us that headquarter is one of the signature projects that this country has got, that project started some years ago and those governors who came before me made the right decision to start it. The reason being, we are a country developing in so many ways including infrastructure, so as we grow the bank is also growing, and there is need for us to have a larger space to expand to do a number of things,” Alic said in an interview with The Dawn in Juba.

South Sudan at independence in 2011, inherited the former branch of the Bank of Sudan as headquarter of the Bank of South Sudan.

Despite the current headquarters of the apex bank having available space for expansion, the top management of the central bank preferred to erect once and for all, a magnificent building that would accommodate all it’s operations without the need to buy more land within Juba to accommodate some of the staff.

“It was a branch of the bank of Sudan and then became the headquarters of the Bank of South Sudan, we thought this place is good enough, we have even purchased a few pieces of land but still the size is not big enough and also the structure that we have is in such way that even if we expand, we will be constricted,” Alic said while justifying the reason for constructing the new storied building in Khor Williang.

“So I think it was felt wisely, that we need to construct a new headquarters, one that will be up to standard as you see anywhere today, so for us it’s the image but beyond the image it is also having a new structure that adds value in terms of what we will be doing,” he added.

In February, a visiting team from the East African Community was awestruck and impressed by the magnificent headquarters under construction.

“South Sudan is part of the EAC and there are certain things that we are supposed to be in compliant with what the EAC wants, and one of those is for us to rate our risk and compliant indicators. So the team came here and the day we went to the headquarters, they went and looked around and they were all very happy with the building which meets the standards required of the EAC member States,” Alic disclosed.

David Manyuon Nak, Director General for Administration in the Bank of South Sudan, who recently led a team of senior staff of the central bank on a tour of the construction works at the site, assured that Shandong Hi-Speed Group Co.Ltd is on track to meet the deadline.

“From our last visit, we wanted to have the building completed by June 30 this year, so we have come to ensure that the promise is met by the company. Today, we have seen the level of progress they (SDHS) have made and we want them to put in more effort so that the deadline of June is met,” Manyuon said.

He said SDHS has been directed to work closely with the Director General of Information Communication Technology in the Bank of South Sudan, to correct or fix any defects before the building is opened to the public.

The building has 12 floors and a conference center that can host more than 500 persons.

In addition, it has a vast recreational center containing a sports gym, restaurant and other amenities.

“The building will house all the employees of the bank and it is very spacious to accommodate all,” Manyuon said.

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