Juba (South Sudan), July 1: The country will be just five-year-old on July 9 but South Sudan will not celebrate its independence day this year because it doesn't have money.
South Sudan's Information Minister Michael Makuei Lueth told reporters earlier this week that the country's government doesn't want to spend much on the independence day, the Washington Post cited the former telling Al Jazeera as saying. The country, instead, wants to focus on other issues.
South Sudan became independent from Sudan, Africa's biggest country then, on July 9, 2011, following an age-old bloody civil war with the country's ethnically Arab north. In the referendum held that year, almost 99 per cent of voters favoured independence and much of the international community recognised the new country.
The minister said the celebrations would cost at least 10 million Sudanese pounds, the report cited the Associated Press. Last year, the country still had witnessed an official ceremony and parade with dancing and singing.
South Sudan though is a rich country in terms of natural resources but decades of fighting have left it in a vulnerable state. The low oil prices have also hit the country, dubbed by the World Bank as the "most oil-dependent country in the world".
In terms of foreign reserves too, the country's fortunes can last for a month at the most, said its Central Bank---Paris-based Sudan Tribune said.