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Hamdok postpones cabinet reshuffle until signing of Sudan's peace agreement

Sudan Tribune - Tue, 08/09/2020 - 21:55

September 8, 2020 (KHARTOUM) - Sudanese Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok has postponed the cabinet reshuffle until the signing of the peace agreement between the government and the Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) scheduled to take place on October 2.

Last July, Hamdok accepted the resignation of six ministers and fired the health minister.

"The prime minister informed us that he has postponed the ministerial reshuffle until the signing of the peace agreement," a member of the Central Council of the Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC) Ahmed Hadara told the Sudan Tribune on Tuesday.

He pointed out that Hamdok is waiting for the nomination of the SRF candidates to the government to reshuffle the cabinet once for all.

He added that FFC leadership is considering the creation of new ministries to allow the SRF to join the government, as it is agreed in the peace agreement.

Under the peace agreement, which was initialled on August 31, the SRF will nominate five ministers in the government.

On August 23, the FFC picked its candidates for the seven ministries and nominated 3 people for each ministerial portfolio. The prime minister chooses one of them for the position.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

The rise of clan administration in South Sudan

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 07/09/2020 - 15:10

By Musa Magoor

After fighting for it collectively and subsequently voted together for her independence, South Sudan was born a proud nation created as a result of the unity of its diverse ethnicities, cultures and languages. The peoples of this young Republic, therefore, entrusted President Salva Kiir and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement party a duty to manage the abundant resources of this young nation in order to make the lives of the South Sudanese people better.

Unfortunately, President Kiir and his wife Ayen Mayardit have hijacked our hard-earned nation and turned it into a family and clan property, using national resources to finance family and clan projects in order to execute their clan agenda. Yes! This is what has been going on. The rest of the tribes have been thinking it is a Dinka government, the rest of the Dinka have thought it is a Bahr-el-Ghazal Government when it is, in fact, an Awan Chan Clan and Relatives Government. In Short ACC&RG.

A few weeks ago, South Sudan Central Bank officials declared to the public in a press conference that the central bank had run out of foreign reserves. This announcement left South Sudanese wandering as to what the government has done with the money when the civil servants' salaries have not been paid and implementation of revitalized peace agreement stuck.

Some South Sudanese officials blame the collapsed South Sudan's economy to the civil war, deteriorating oil prices and coronavirus pandemic. But these are not really the causes of what is depriving the bank of foreign reserves and killing the economy of South Sudan. President Kiir family and his clan are.

In 2012, the Bank of South Sudan was doing great under the wise and able leadership of a non-Awan former Governor Late. Elijah Malok Aleng. That time, South Sudan had suspended oil production following some disagreements with Khartoum over transit and tariff fees. Even without oil revenues, the economy of South Sudan was doing great. The reason was that the bank Governor was a nationalist, serving the interest of the South Sudanese people.

Elijah Malok Aleng (Rest in Peace uncle), was at monetary warfare with the first family and the clan of President Kiir. He had the ability to say no and the aptitude to turn down several unnecessary payment requests approved by Mister Kiir so that the bank continues to have enough foreign reserves. As he tried to make sure the nation has enough reserves, the first family took him as a barrier on their way to riches. And as a result, Malok was fired and replaced with Cornelius Koriom, Mister Kiir clansman and family ally whose second name means locust.

Knowing what was coming next after his sacking, Malok awarded the new bank governor a broom. His gift was an illustration to President Kiir, his family and the South Sudanese that he has handed the responsibility of the bank to the family and clan of Mr Kiir and that they can now sweep out all the foreign reserves in the bank. It didn't bother Kiir and his associate as much. The barrier was removed. That was the time Mr Kiir started using constitutional powers meant for serving the nation to instead implement his family and clan agenda.

After President Kiir successfully took control of the central bank, foreign reserves surely and quickly became a family property. Clan networks and clan deals penetrated into the bank and took deep root in what was supposedly be a formal regime. Decisions to appointments who would become the next central bank governor or Executive Director of the State-owned lucrative National Petroleum Company were made by the family and clan of Mr Kiir. Decision-making process shifted from the cabinet meeting hall and the SPLM political bureau to Mr Kiir family and clan in what can best be described as “the rise of clan politics in South Sudan”.

Consolidating clan power
After the successful control of the bank and the national finances, President Kiir family and clan then resorted to using the national wealth to consolidate clan power in order to implement a clan agenda which is to terrorize and intimidate the rest of the tribes in the country. Here are some examples.

In 2013, the clan regime of Mr Kiir aggravated the Dinka against the Nuer and managed to divide the nation along ethnic lines. He, therefore, used the national resources and the rest of the Dinka like Paul Malong and Mathiang Anyor (Kiir Militia Unit that fought 2013 war) to fight a clan-based war with a clan schema in the name of protecting the legitimacy of his self-imposed government against the so-called coup plotters.

After he was pushed to the corner to end the war, Mister Kiir reluctantly accepted to sign a peace deal. Although the peace agreement redefined governance in its rightful meaning and management of State resources in a more formal setting, Mr Kiir has persisted on serving the interest of his family and that of his clan over the national interest.

While training of the unified forces, feeding for these forces, forming of State governments, reconstitution of the Parliament and formation of the hybrid court (some of the major parts of the peace agreement) are desperately in need of funding, has continued to fund clan activities leaving major parts of the peace agreement unattended for.

The regime has continued to amass military power which is currently largely and firmly in the hands of the clans. You can see them heavily armed on the streets, in armoured mounted vehicles or at the junctions at night doing patrol to keep the clan regime in power. You can hear them looting property at night in the name of unknown gunmen. You can see them releasing their fellow criminals mistakenly arrested by the National Police Services at detention facilities, you can see as judges in courtrooms passing biased judgments on innocent South Sudanese like Peter Biar and Kerubino Wol. All of them are clan's men in different levels of power executing same clan agenda, which is to marginalize South Sudanese forever.

Funding proxy wars, deadly disarmament and assassinations
After securing all the military hardware, power and all the money, Kiir clan regime then resorted to using national finances to fund proxy wars in an effort to destabilize other clans and the South Sudanese people. You might have heard about the unending Murle verses Dinka-Bor and Nuer conflict.

Before South Sudan's independence, Sudan was the major funder of this conflict. Kiir inherited the style from Khartoum and continued to fund the Murle, arming them against the Dinka-Bor and Nuer people. Millions of our dollars that should have been used to implement the revitalized peace deal have gone to this Clan project in terms of arms, ammunition and other military logistics.

Another major clan project that contributed to the bankruptcy of our bank is the private airstrip in Tonj. In June 2020, South Sudanese learnt of a private airstrip built in Tonj by the Director-General of Internal Security, Akol Khor, who is Mr Kiir's niece and Mr. Kiir right-hand man holding the brutal national security service. The airstrip whose importance is yet to be known by South Sudanese was funded by the clan regime using national finances.

In August 2020, the clan regime also funded a massacre campaign against people of Luanyjang in Tonj East in the name of a disarmament exercise. 127 people, including women and children, were killed; women were raped, and thousands were displaced from their homes. You may wonder why Kiir would target people from his own State of Warrap. Well, let me give you some understanding.

Luanyjang is the same clan Late. Kerubino Wol Agok ails from. You may remember this renowned young businessman who was detained for nearly a year without charges at the national security detention facility without charges. You may remember the abuses inflicted on him at the blue house. You remember how he was unjustly convicted for ten years and late pardoned after spending some months in Juba central prison. You may also remember how he was provoked into forming a rebellion. You may also remember how the national security went after him and immediately killed him weeks after forming his rebellion. This was the cause of the massacre in Luanyjang.

After the clan regime had succeeded in killing Kerubino Wol, they went further to target his clan, terrorizing them in the name of disarmament and showing the people of Luanyjang, how their neighbouring Awan clan has become more powerful than them. This is the same thing they did to sons of Aweil when Paul Malong Awan declared his rebellion against the clan regime. Before his eyes were opened, Malong had served the clan regime as an Army chief to the last atom of his energy and sadly dumped after executing what the clan wanted.

Again, a good amount of our money that was supposed to be used to pay civil servants was used to fund that devastating disarmament exercise.

On August 23, 2020, the clan regime also funded the assassination of Major General of Police Bior Ajoh Bior. A junior army officer was paid to kill a brave high ranking official from Bor who has fought several battles during the war of liberation and come out alive. Gen. Bior assassin had confessed Late. Bior that he was on a revenge mission. He said he has been looking for Bior in order to kill him to avenge Lual Akok wol also known as Lual Marine, President Kiir cousin.

Late. Lual Akok was killed in Sherikat in early June after trying to turn a graveyard with still fresh graves of former war heroes into his makeshift shops. He also closed a public toilet near that area, a case that triggered the dispute which led to the killing of seven civilians including some potential young men from Bor.

Lual had married Ayen's niece and his killing has since become a business and the basis for Ayen and her brother Gorgori to assassinate Dinka Bor high ranking officials. According to the information leaked, Bior is not the only one that was targeted. The family of Mr Kiir and his clan especially Ayen Mayardit has made a long list of generals and many other VIPs, particularly from Bor to be killed in the name to avenging Lual Marine. National Money and State power are being used here to intimidate, maim, and kill innocent people from Bor in the same way they have done in recent years.

In 2017, the clan regime used enough money to deport James Gadet Dak, First Vice President Riek Machar spokesperson from Nairobi to Juba before peace was signed. I think Riek Machar might have used a lot of adjectives to beg Salva Kiir to spare Gadet's life.

Another amount of dollars was used to kidnap Activists Aggrey Idris and Human Rights lawyers Dong Samuel from Nairobi. The two were later killed. In the same way, these projects were carried out in the past, the family has bribed and paid spies and assassins in what they call a revenge project against the Dinka Bor people which is under the lead of Ayen and Gorgori. This is the government that South Sudanese are waiting to bring reforms to the country.

If you are thinking like me then you need to know that the time has come for us to wake up and unite our strength against this clan regime, Mr Kiir. We must not remain at his mercy just like that. Don't be fooled by the Transitional Government of National Unity. The reformists who entered into this government have since remained quiet. The clan government of Mr Kiir must have given them something to keep their mouths busy. And therefore not thinking about reforms they have been singing.

Therefore, let all non-awan officials in the cabinet, in the judiciary, in the parliament, in the army, in the police, university lecturers, schools teachers and others holding some of those fake positions in this clan administration resign and join the rest of the South Sudanese in calling this clan regime to step down. It is the right time for South Sudanese to take back their own country and restore the principles that led to the formation of this great nation that has been under the captivity of Mr Kiir and his clan rule for years.

Let the UNMISS be ready to send its cameras into the skies to documents our new martyrs and unarmed freedom fighters.

The writer is South Sudanese and can be reached at musagor2020@gmail.com

Categories: Africa

Let us celebrate long-awaited Sudan's peace agreement

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 07/09/2020 - 13:37

By Mahmoud A. Suleiman

At such pivotal occasions one would first find it necessary to pay tributes and ask Almighty Allaah's mercy and prayers for the lives of thousands of the innocent Sudanese citizens that were lost during the years of the futile wars launched by the regime, the ousted Islamic National Congress Party (NCP), and its ousted genocidal fugitive from the international justice the dictator Omer Hassan Ahmed al-Bashir, and the hope for a speedy recovery for the wounded, and the hope for the return of the refugee and the internally displaced citizens to their original lands and homes and Welcome, without hesitation or reservation on the outcomes of the Sudanese Peace agreement, signed with initials in the peace platform of Juba, the capital of the sisterly state of South Sudan.

This article comes against the backdrop of the Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF), the coalition of rebel groups from the western region of Darfur and the southern states of South Kordofan and the Blue Nile, signing the peace agreement at a ceremony in Juba, capital of neighbouring South Sudan, which has hosted and helped mediate the long-running talks since late 2019. At this occasion, I ask myself as to what am I going to say at this pivotal time when the long-awaited and remotely expected hope has been fulfilled? This state of mind has been lingering within us which was the fact that made us continue dreaming until we lived to witness the celebration of the initial signing of the Sudan Peace Agreement in the Peace Forum in Juba, the capital of the sisterly State of South Sudan under the leadership of the beloved President His Excellency Salva Kiir Mayardit, and in the presence of the components of the Sudanese transitional government and representatives of countries in Our African and Arab surroundings regions, and the whole world around us.

It is a joy that resembles as if we were in a dream; a thousand of congratulations to the mediation committee and to the components of the Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) and to the Sudanese people as a whole. Indeed, these are historical moments mixed with the slogans of the glorious 19th December 2018 Revolution, which the revolutionaries chanted loudly Freedom, Peace and Justice.

This celebration is not only a moment's event but rather it goes on to address the roots causes of the chronic Sudanese crisis, which has continued unabatedly since the dawn of the departure of the British-Egyptian colonialism aka Anglo-Egyptian Condominium. Sudan has been plugged by an endless series of military putschist - Coup d' état regimes – that amounted to over thirty-odd and lean years.

Sudan has witnessed and suffered 4 military coup d'état and 6 failed coup attempts during the 62 years after the departure of the foreign colonials, and after that came the failed internal colonialism characterised by Arbitrary ruling regimes; the worst and the 30 year-long one has been the International Muslim Brotherhood Movement (MBM), Khartoum branch which the people of Sudan ousted following the Glorious 19th December 2018 Revolution.

At this stage let us leaf through what Ahmed Mohamed Tugud, a leader in the Justice and Equality Movement and chief negotiator for the Darfur track, reported about the outputs of the Juba Peace Platform and what has been achieved and expected include the following:

At the end of August and beginning of September 2020, major work was accomplished on the Juba platform, and the results reached in their entirety were positive and promising, as a number of agreements were signed - the Juba Declaration Agreement, which includes the political declaration and the declaration of a cessation of hostilities, agreements on detailed issues and the signature came On the framework agreement that will draw the road map linked to the multiple files, and accordingly, there were multiple paths and in the Darfur path with its many files, including the following:
• The file of power-sharing
• File of wealth-sharing
• Justice, accountability and reconciliation file
• Compensation and reparation file
• The land and hawakir file
• The nomads and pastoralists sector development file in the Darfur region
• The Internally Displaced People and refugees file
• The file of the permanent ceasefire agreement and final security arrangements

And now negotiations are underway on the file on the final security arrangements, so a great way has been made about the male files, especially in the file of the return of the displaced and refugees, which if fulfilled positively helps the final return of refugees and displaced persons, knowing that this is linked to the land paper and thus has been completed Establishing the historical rights of people for the tribes, which is the restoration of all lands that were previously seized unlawfully or by using force and arms. Mechanisms have been formed for this paper for the return of people to their lands in Hawakeer in an organized manner. This is in addition to the justice paper that talks about the people wanted for international justice And the agreement to hand over the wanted persons to the International Criminal Court, in addition to holding accountable the persons who committed crimes in Darfur who are large in number and whose crimes are many, there should be other mechanisms capable of achieving justice, bringing justice to the victims and realizing the right of people who have been affected by the conflict, and therefore it was agreed to form courts Especially within Sudan, and special budgets and international oversight have been set for it in order for us to properly conduct justice without any external influence, which helps in recovering People have their rights in a quick and efficient manner. This is in addition to the file on wealth that addresses the historical imbalance and injustice in the distribution of resources and wealth in the country, and it was carried out with specific criteria on this division of wealth in addition to determining the region's share of the earth's resources from wealth, taxes, customs and sources of income. Governmental mechanisms were agreed upon, whether central, such as the revenue commission and the commission for resource allocation and revenue inventory, in addition to how to effectively and equitably distribute resources so that the imbalance that occurred in the past is addressed, and this is in the answer to the second paper on nomads, herders and farmers, where The dispute in the centre extended to the outskirts of the country, and we agreed that the region's share would be large with regard to the resources extracted from the ground through mechanisms that were agreed upon, whether local or in the centre in Khartoum, such as the commission for resource allocation and revenue inventory, in addition to how to distribute resources effectively and fairly. In order to address the major imbalances that occurred in the past, either in the nomads, shepherds and farmers paper, which includes a large segment where the dispute with the centre has spread to the parties And clear criteria were agreed upon so that the region's share would be large in all sources of income. The government's powers were also defined and with regard to the authority paper that has thorny issues related to the current political situation, the constitutional document and the mechanisms of transition in it at the level of the sovereign, the Council of Ministers and the Legislative Council. The most important of what has been achieved include the following:

Confirming the idea of a single region for all of Darfur, and this will be done for the regional government after signing the peace, as clear powers have been achieved to enable the current government to implement what was agreed upon, and if this implementation paper is estimated, it will open to people the active political participation in power at all levels in the country of Sudan, starting with, the Council of Ministers, and the Legislative Council, in addition to the governours of states, state governments, and various bodies. This, through negotiation, the principle of the region was established among the marginal masses, especially the masses of Darfur, and this achievement would not have been achieved had it not been for the great effort that was made in the Juba platform, and in addition, A unique investigation has been made for the civil service, where people will be absorbed upon the signing of the agreement. The final agreement will be made directly, where direct appointments are made by ambassadors and agents of ministries and global missions and in the civil service at a rate of twenty per cent only after forty-five days from the signing of the agreement, after which the procedures are followed. And lasts for six months, followed by absorption of ten per cent, to be completed to thirty per cent in less than eight or nine months, and this is without the slightest doubt an achievement Great, as this applies to the judiciary or the public prosecution, and so on in bodies and commissions, and in all public and semi-public companies, and we believe that this is a great precedent for people.

The Sudanese Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) took the opportunity of the initiative to celebrate the signing of the initials of the peace agreement in the peace platform in Juba through an interactive meeting to preach the agreement and set up a meeting in order to reflect on positive engagement in welcoming the peace and looing forwards towards the opportunities for implementing the agreement and on peaceful coexistence and scaling the social fabric by Ustaz Mahjoub Hassan Jalal Al-Din, Secretary of the Sudanese Justice and Equality Movement in North Darfur State, and on the guarantees for the implementation of the agreement; while the Engineer Abu Bakr Hamid al-Nur, advisor to the Leader of the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), said that the guarantee of this agreement is its implementation, on which the Sudanese people will depend on and look forward to its implementation and Applying it to coexistent reality.

Among the important issues that need to be given great care and attention is the issue of prisoners of war (PWOs) who are in the prisons of the ousted regime, especially prisoners whose place of imprisonment is unknown, and let alone those missing from previous battles and wars. Therefore, the parties that signed the peace agreement in Juba should hurry to disclose the whereabouts of those victims of these absurd wars of attrition.

In sum, the Sudan Peace Agreement, which was signed by initials at the Peace Forum in Juba, the capital of the sisterly state of South Sudan, found unprecedented support from all the Sudanese people and the armed struggle movements. And the Sudanese people have grown more joyful today when the peace agreement that signed in Juba has been resigned in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, on the third of September 2020 by Dr Abdullah Hamdok, Prime Minister of Sudan's transitional government, and Commander Abdulaziz Al-Hilu Chairperson of the Sudan People's Liberation Army SPLA-North who will keep his weapons until an agreement on the secular state is reached.
https://sudantribune.com/spip.php?article69777

Furthermore, Hamdok returns to the country after promising discussions with Al-Hilu and Sudanile publishes the text of the original joint statement between Hamdok and Al-Hilu and the agreement to negotiate in Juba.http://www.sudanile.com/index.php/%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%A3%D8%AE%D8%A8%D8%A7%D8%B1/129134-%D8%AD%D9%85%D8%AF%D9%88%D9%83-%D9%8A%D8%B9%D9%88%D8%AF-%D9%84%D9%84%D8%A8%D9%84%D8%A7%D8%AF-%D8%A8%D8%B9%D8%AF-%D9%85%D8%A8%D8%A7%D8%AD%D8%AB%D8%A7%D8%AA-%D9%85%D8%A8%D8%B4%D8%B1%D8%A9-%D9%85%D8%B9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AD%D9%84%D9%88

Thus, the Juba Sudanese Peace Agreement has acquired unanimous approval by all the rebel movements except the faction chaired by Comrade Abel Wahid Muhammed Ahmed El-Nour, who will, hopefully, get convinced to sign as did his counterpart rebel movements. As they say, it is better to come late than never! The Sudan peace talks lead to 7 protocols signed in Juba, according to the final Documents, as reported by the Dabanga Website. https://www.dabangasudan.org/en/all-news/article/sudan-peace-talks-7-protocols-signed-in-juba
The Professionals Association is reported to have expressed its support for the separation of religion and state to advance the peace process.https://www.sudantribune.net/%D8%AA%D8%AC%D9%85%D8%B9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%85%D9%87%D9%86%D9%8A%D9%8A%D9%86-%D8%AA%D8%A3%D9%8A%D9%8A%D8%AF-%D9%81%D8%B5%D9%84-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AF%D9%8A%D9%86-%D8%B9%D9%86-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AF%D9%88%D9%84%D8%A9

Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn the Russian novelist, philosopher, historian, short story writer and political prisoner and who was an outspoken critic of the Soviet Union and Communism and helped to raise global awareness of the Soviet Gulag forced-labor camp system, has been quoted as saying: “Of course, peace treaties are very attractive to those who sign them. They strengthen one's prestige with the electorate. But the time will come when the names of these public figures will be erased from history. Nobody will remember them any longer. But the Western peoples will have to pay heavily for these overtrusting agreements.”
https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/peace-treaty

Dr Mahmoud A. Suleiman is an author, columnist and a blogger. His blog is http://thussudan.wordpress.com/

Categories: Africa

UN plans to reduce population of former protection sites in South Sudan

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 07/09/2020 - 08:37


September 7, 2020 (JUBA) - The head of the UN peacekeeping mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) said they are planning to reduce the residents of the displacement camps, previously called e Protection of Civilians (POC) sites

On 4 September, David Shearer announced the withdrawal of UNMISS troops from the POC sites across the country to be under the control of the government security forces.

On Monday Shearer met with President Salva Kiir to discuss UNMISS plans to reshape the now called IDPs cams, according to a statement released by the press unit of the South Sudanese presidency after the meeting.

"Speaking to the media after the meeting, David Shearer said that the UN protection camps are highly congested, and therefore the UN is planning to reduce the population at the sites to curb the spread of coronavirus," further said the statement.

In his press conference of last week, the UN envoy the COVID 19 continues to hit the country before to add that the residents of the POC sites "live closer together so therefore the risk of spreading is a bit higher".

However, he stressed that people in South Sudan die more from malaria than the new coronavirus.

"While we are seeing cases (of coronavirus) in the POC sites, we are not seeing a mass death rate or anything like that. In fact, we are seeing more deaths, at the moment, from malaria and malaria-related issues than we are from COVID".

The statement said that the head of the peacekeeping mission said that there is an improvement in the security situation in Jonglei State.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

Sudanese parties initial peace implementation matrix

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 07/09/2020 - 07:49

September 7, 2020 (KHARTOUM) - The transitional government and the Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) initialled the matrix of the implementation of the peace agreement they reached on 31 August.

The initial signing ceremony which took place on Monday at the venue of the peace talks in Juba was attended by representatives of both sides and the mediation team.

In statements after the event, Tut Gatluak the chief mediator said that the South Sudanese government will invite the Sudanese government, represented by the Sovereign Council and the Council of Ministers, heads of state and government of the IGAD, representatives of the United Nations, Friends of Sudan group, Arab and African countries to attend the final signing ceremony of the peace agreement.

Gatluak who is also the South Sudanese presidential adviser for security affairs recalled that achieving peace in Sudan is closely linked to the security and stability of South Sudan.

He encouraged the leader of the Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North Abdel Aziz al-Hilu to resume peace talks with the Sudanese government and called on the holdout rebel leader Abdel Wahid al-Nur to join the ongoing efforts to bring peace in Sudan.

Following a meeting of President Salva Kiir with the member of the Sovereign Council Shams al-Din Kabbashi, Gatluak said that, on Sunday, that the final signing of the peace agreement between the Sudanese parties will take place in Juba on 2nd October.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

Al-Burhan, Afeweri discuss security cooperation between Eritrea and Sudan

Sudan Tribune - Mon, 07/09/2020 - 07:03

September 7, 2020 (ASMARA) - Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the head of the Sovereign Council and President Isaias Afwerki discussed the implementation of a bilateral security agreement between the two countries.

Al-Burhan travelled to Asmara for a one-day working visit where he was received by Afwerki before to hold a meeting on bilateral matters.

"Eritrea and Sudan have agreed on concrete measures that will be taken to implement comprehensive bilateral agreements reached in the economic, trade, security and military sectors as well as mechanisms and timelines for their commencement," said the Eritrean information ministry after the visit.

The two parties further "discussed regional issues of common concern, especially frameworks for cooperation in the security field," said the Sovereign Council in a quoting Sudanese Chargé d'Affairs in Asmara Mahmoud Hamza.

The meeting was attended by Osman Saleh Eritrean Foreign Minister, Yemane Gebreab Presidential Adviser.

For his part, al-Burhan was accompanied by Jamal Abdel Majid Director of the General Intelligence Service, and Yasir Mohamed Osman Head of the Military Intelligence.

Before to return to Khartoum, al-Burhan visited agricultural development projects around Mislam and Logo dams.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

Sudanese Communists SPLM-N al Hilu agree to work for diversity in Sudan

Sudan Tribune - Sun, 06/09/2020 - 12:10

September 6, 2020 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese Communist Party and the SPLM-N led by Abdel Aziz al-Hilu agreed to work together to ensure religious diversity through the inclusion of fundamental principles in the constitution of Sudan that should not be amended under any circumstances.

Sudanese Communist Party (SCP) secretary-general Mohamed Mukhtar al-Khatib (Al-Sudani)

The two parties agreed on a political declaration after a series of meeting that took place between them in the Ethiopian capital, on Saturday and Sunday. The discussions touched issues related to democracy, nationalities and diversity in Sudan.

"The constitution or the law must not violate the freedoms and rights contained in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and international and regional covenants. Any law issued in contravention of this declaration and charters shall be null and unconstitutional," read the joint declaration.

"The human rights principles included in these charters are fundamental principles in the constitution of Sudan, and it not is allowed to violate, amend, or skip them under any pretext," it added.

The declaration comes after an agreement between the prime minister Abdallah Hamdok and al-Hilu to hold consultative discussions on the separation of religion and the state before to resume formal peace talks.

The agreement prohibits the establishment of any political party in the country on a religious basis. Also, it says that the state should recognizes and respects the religious diversity and ensures peaceful coexistence, equality and tolerance.

The Communist Party and the SPLM-N al-Hilu pledged to work together to protect the Sudanese people's right to change and freedom and to implement the revolution's slogan of "freedom, peace and justice."

The Mohamed Mukhtar al-Khatib, Political secretary of the Sudanese Communist Party his party delegation while the SPLM-N delegation was chaired by al-Hilu.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

Sudan's final peace agreement to be signed on 2 October

Sudan Tribune - Sun, 06/09/2020 - 08:45

September 6, 2020 (JUBA) - The South Sudanese mediation announced that the final peace agreement between the Sudanese transitional government and the armed groups will be signed on 2 October in Juba.

"The signing of the final peace agreement between the government and the Revolutionary Front will take place on the second of October in Juba," said the chief mediator Tut Galtuak on Sunday.

Galtuak expected that the two parties will sign the implementation matrix on Monday, in preparation for the final signing of the peace agreement.

The Sudanese parties initialled the one-year negotiated agreement on 31 August.

Following what, they formed a committee to set up the implementation matrix.

There were unconfirmed reports that the final signing ceremony will be in Khartoum with a popular ceremony.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

Al-Burhan meets former political allies of Sudan's ousted regime

Sudan Tribune - Sun, 06/09/2020 - 08:04

September 6, 2020 (KHARTOUM) - Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, head of the Sovereign Council held a meeting with the National Program Group (NPG), which is made up of several groups previously allied with the former regime.

Tijani al-Sissi (SUNA)

The meeting which took place at the headquarters of the Sudanese army raised widespread reactions in social media, given that the group participated in the regime of the ousted president, Omer al-Bashir until his collapse in April 2019.

The National Programme Group (NPG) consists of the Sudan Renaissance Alliance headed by Tijani al-Sissi, former head of the Darfur Transitional Authority, the Popular Congress Party, the Democratic Unionist Party faction of Ahmed Bilal, the Justice Party led by Bechara Aru, the Third Way group, and the Union of Independent Representatives, a group of former MPs in the dissolved parliament, headed by Abu al-Gasim Burtom.

Following the meeting, a spokesman of the Sudanese army issued a statement saying that al-Burhan was briefed about the NPG objectives which call for concerted national efforts to face the serious challenges that Sudan is going through internally, externally, economically and security.

The statement quoted al-Sissi as saying that the way out of these challenges is the agreement of all political forces on a national programme for the transitional period and the development of a permanent constitution for the country.

Al-Sissi further stressed the need not to focus on who governs Sudan, but the constitution that governs it.

"Al-Burhan valued the efforts made by the NPG forces to serve the supreme national interests and stressed the importance of national cohesion," he added.

According to al-Bashir's former partner, al-Burhan further called to hold a workshop for all components of the political forces to develop visions to achieve the goals of the glorious December revolution.

Aru, a former information minister in Bashir's government from Darfur region, said on his Facebook page that al-Burhan had received a copy of their programme.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

SLM-Nur supporters reject Juba agreement for peace in Sudan

Sudan Tribune - Sun, 06/09/2020 - 03:13

September 6, 2020 (ZALINGEI) - Hundreds of supporters of the head of the Sudan Liberation Movement Abdel Wahid Mohamed (SLM-AW) demonstrated in Zalingei, Central Darfur state, on Sunday, against the peace agreement initialled recently in Juba.

Al-Nur refused to join the peace process brokered by the South Sudanese government saying the parties are negotiating a power-sharing deal that does not address the root causes of the conflict.

Instead, he proposed to hold a peace conference inside Sudan with the participation of all political and civil forces and armed movements, but he did not provide details of his initiative so far.

“Hundreds of al-Nur's supporters in Al-Hamidiyah camp for displaced people in Zalingei demonstrated against the peace agreement, shouting slogans describing it as a compromise that did not do justice to the victims of the war.”

It is noteworthy that the city of Zalingei is the birthplace of Abdel Wahid al-Nur.

The demonstrators held banners saying that the rights of victims and displaced persons are not negotiable, also they chanted slogans describing the peace agreement as bargaining with the rights of IDPs and refugees and as a provocation against them.

The Sudanese government says it is actively seeking to persuade the exiled rebel leader to engage in negotiations but they failed until now.

On Saturday, Faisal Mohamed Saleh Information Minister told Sky News Arabia that al-Nur did not set any conditions for negotiation.

"The condition he had been repeating for a long time is that he does not want to negotiate outside Sudan," Saleh added.

Saleh went further to say that the government welcomes the idea, and is willing to provide all the guarantees that he, the SLM-AW leadership and its negotiating delegation need until to reach Khartoum and begin peace talks inside Sudan.

(ST)

Categories: Africa

Akufo-Addo Addresses Nation Tonight

ModernGhana News - Sun, 30/08/2020 - 13:46
President Akufo-Addo is expected to address the nation tonight on new measures taken by the country in the fight against COVID-19. This will be his 16th national address on the subject since Ghana recorded its first two cases of the virus in March 2020.
Categories: Africa

Savannah Region: Another Alleged 'Witch' Butchered

ModernGhana News - Sun, 30/08/2020 - 13:03
It appears the practice of lynching old women labeled as 39;witches 39; is getting out of hand as new events of such barbaric acts rage on. Not too long ago, it was Akua Denteh, this time around, it is Madam Meri Ibrahim, a 60-year-old alleged witch who has been attacked and butchered by residents in Sumpini near Busunu in the West Gonja municipality of the Savannah Region.
Categories: Africa

Active COVID-19 Cases Down To 1,152, Death Toll Now 276

ModernGhana News - Sun, 30/08/2020 - 13:03
Some 87 new COVID-19 cases have been recorded in Ghana pushing the country rsquo;s cumulative case count to 44,205. Furthermore, the number of persons who have recovered currently stands at 42,777 while the number of active cases is 1,152.
Categories: Africa

Any Future Government Can Abrogate Agyapa Royalties Deal---Lawyer

ModernGhana News - Sun, 30/08/2020 - 13:03
The controversy surrounding the Agyapa Royalties deal is not resting any time soon as the debates and scrutiny continue. The latest to wade into the matter is Private Legal Practitioner, Yaw Oppong, who has argued that the Agyapa Royalties Limited agreement is no cast in stone, hence any future government can abrogate it.
Categories: Africa

Akufo-Addo Makes 16th COVID-19 Address Tonight: Ghanaians Anticipate Reopening Of Airports

ModernGhana News - Sun, 30/08/2020 - 12:44
As President Nana Akufo-Addo engages the public tonight for the 16th time on measures taken to deal with the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, there is high anticipation among Ghanaians looking forward to the reopening of the country 39;s airports and borders post-lockdown The president has been engaging the public through LIVE nationwide broadcasts ever since the country recorded its first COVID-19 case.
Categories: Africa

Complex security, environmental crises worsen conditions for over 360,000 in western Chad

UN News Centre - Africa - Fri, 28/08/2020 - 20:29
More than 360,000 internally displaced persons in Chad’s Lake province are facing a “double” crisis, exposed to security and environmental risks, the UN International Organization for Migration (IOM) has reported, highlighting the need to strengthen resilience of affected communities.
Categories: Africa

UN rights chief urges DR Congo to protect Nobel laureate Mukwege amid death threats

UN News Centre - Africa - Fri, 28/08/2020 - 19:14
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet has condemned death threats made against Congolese Nobel Prize laureate Dr. Denis Mukwege and called for his protection.
Categories: Africa

UN rights expert calls for ceasefire, commitment from all stakeholders to ensure free elections in Central African Republic

UN News Centre - Africa - Thu, 27/08/2020 - 22:26
The UN’s expert on human rights in the Central African Republic (CAR) issued a series of recommendations on Wednesday to ensure that citizens – after years of civil unrest – can freely decide the future of their country during presidential elections on 27 December.
Categories: Africa

Togo overcomes ‘sleeping sickness’ as a public health problem

UN News Centre - Africa - Thu, 27/08/2020 - 14:55
The West African nation of Togo has eliminated human African trypanosomiasis or “sleeping sickness” as a public health problem, becoming the first in the continent to achieve the milestone, the UN World Health Organization (WHO) has said. 
Categories: Africa

Caged Congolese man: Why a zoo took 114 years to apologise

BBC Africa - Thu, 27/08/2020 - 01:13
Ota Benga was kidnapped from what is now DR Congo in 1904 and taken to the US to be exhibited.
Categories: Africa

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