July 31, 2017 (JUBA) – The spokesperson for South Sudan’s presidency, Ateny Wek Ateny denied that he was poisoned, saying he did not even eat at a wedding party he attended on Saturday.
- South Sudan’s presidential spokesperson, Ateny Wek Ateny (AFP)
Ateny, reacting to rumours that circulated on social media, clarified that reports linked to poisoning were “malicious and bear no truth”.
“In fact, there was food poison that was reported to have occurred on Saturday July 29, 2017 during the wedding of Mr. Cleto Akot Kuel’s daughter which I had attended, but ate nothing in the wedding. The talk of food poison just became rampant on Sunday and many people contacted me and wished me quick recovery,” said Ateny.
“However, it is important to inform all of my relatives and friends that I did not even eat at that occasion. I just heard [about] the poison during the wedding [occasion], but I cannot verify it”, he added.
The presidential aide did not further elaborate on the information that became a public matter, as many equally expressed sympathy.
Ateny, a lawyer and renowned former political commentator for the Juba-based Citizen newspaper was appointed press secretary to President Salva Kiir in 2013.
Prior to his appointment, however, Ateny commented on various political incidents and processes and was a staunch critic of the country’s political leaders and officials.