Thursday, 18th October, 2007 E-mail article Print article
Amb. Hassan Gadkarim
By Hassan Gadkarim
The recent political development in the Sudan is a solely political manifestation of partisan exercise between the two major political parties that currently constitute Sudan Government of National Unity (GONU), along with other political parties, mainly; NDA, DUP, the UMMA, the Communist and others.
As such, this suspension does not amount to a complete pull-out by the SPLM from the CPA nor is it a full-withdrawal by the SPLM from the constitutional setting and national institutions established by both the CPA and the Transitional National Constitution of the Republic of the Sudan.
This development does not constitute any threat to the CPA, nor does it imply an intention of either of the two parties to instigate confrontation or return to war.
This development will not negatively affect regional security and stability, nor jeopardise, in any way, the on-going Juba Peace talks and mediation process between the Government of Uganda and the Lord Resistance Army (LRA); as hosted by the Sudan. It also has no negative impact at all on the respective bilateral relations between the Sudan and sisterly neighbouring countries; especially Uganda.
This event will also not hamper, in any way, interests and activities of Ugandan businessmen and traders currently resident or prospectively visiting all Sudanese territories, including the South.
The misperceptions and allegations that important deadlines were either missed or not honoured in the process of implementing the CPA, do not stem out of lack of political will on the part of either of the two concerned sides. In fact other external factors such as time constraint, weather, mobility, logistical capacities could be held more responsible and accountable for the delay in the implementation of the CPA.
To cite just a few examples and illustrations in this connection; the Embassy outlines the following cases:
a) The Pre-Interim period of six months that was supposed to precede the transitional period of six years (for the implementation of the CPA, which is supposed to commence immediately after the signature of the CPA); has actually started nine months later, behind the schedule; due to practical bottle-necks and obstacles; including the unfortunate incident of passing away of late Dr. John Garang on the July 30, 2005.
b) Another impeding factor is the weather and the rainy season that have obstructed the adherence of both sides to the prescribed time-table. As a consequence, the SPLM has managed to meet only 6.4% withdrawal of its troops from territories in the North (specifically Blue Nile and Eastern States); while the government has completed a withdrawal of 87.6% from territories in Southern Sudan.
c) Border demarcation between North and South Sudan is also a case in point, whereby the SPLM has failed to name its representatives in the National Border Commission only after an elapse of a whole year from the date of establishment of the Commission. The work of the border commission was further delayed by the current excessive rainfall and floods that have beset almost the whole Southern and Central Sudan. Consequently; it was practically impossible for the Commission to access the lands and territories surrounding the border areas, let alone the challenges precipitated by lack of logistical facilities such as authentic maps and other related documents.
This issue is bound to be settled and contained, in all its dimensions, through the existing modalities and mechanisms built-in and enshrined in the CPA, in particular:-
•The Assessment and Evaluation Commission (AEC)
•The Committee to draw the 1/January 1956 between North and South Sudan.
•The National Petroleum Commission.
•The Joint Committee for monitoring and calculation of oil net revenue.
•The Ceasefire Political Commission (CPC)
•The Joint Defence Board (JDB)
•The Joint Integrated Units (JIUs)
•The National Census Council
•The New Currency Commission
•The National Council for De-Mining and DDR
•The Political Partnership between the NCP and the SPLM
•The Constitutional Court.
The final settlement of this contentious issue rests solely in the hands of the Sudanese people, their will, their determination and national zeal. The two parties have already engaged in elaborious and direct dialogue and consultation currently proceeding at Khartoum, the National Capital, with the full support and encouragement of the Sudanese Political leadership.
The writer is the ambassador of the Republic of the Sudan in Kampala