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Nairobi Consulting About Eastern Sudan

03-17-2006, 05:38 AM
حميد حامد

Registered: 12-12-2005
Total Posts: 0






Nairobi Consulting About Eastern Sudan

    formerly Relationships Foundation International
    Concordis International Trust is a non-profit UK company limited by guarantee (No 493046). Registered Charity No 11056971.
    Patrons: Rt Hon Donald Anderson MP, Professor Zaki Badawi, Viscountess Brentford OBE FCA, Rt Rev and Rt Hon Lord Carey of Clifton,
    Sir Fred Catherwood, Professor Gillian Stamp MA PhD DPhil FRSA, Mr Ram Gidoomal CBE, Rt Rev Tom Wright
    Trustees/Directors: Rt Hon Viscount Brentford (Chairman), Mr John Broadley CMG, Mrs Mary Lou Carrington BSc MBA,
    Mr Jim Peck FCA, Mr Robin Shawyer MA CPA FCA FCMI, Professor Sheila Wirz PhD MEd FCST
    Jubilee House
    3 Hooper Street
    Cambridge CB1 2NZ
    Tel 01223 566333
    Direct 01223 341283
    Fax 01223 566359
    [email protected]
    Access to Resources and Opportunities in Eastern Sudan: Consolidating the
    Comprehensive Peace Agreement
    Conclusions of the Consultation in Nairobi, 14-17 February 2005
    (A professional independent translation into Arabic is appended below)
    Preamble
    1. As an inclusive group of individual Sudanese private citizens and friends of the Sudan, we
    have been meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, in our personal capacities, not speaking for any
    government or other agency, facilitated by Concordis International, for a consultation on
    access to resources in Eastern Sudan. We recognise that the Comprehensive Peace
    Agreement (CPA) between the Government of Sudan and the SPLM needs to be
    consolidated for all areas of the country in order to assure a sustained, peaceful future.
    2. We greeted with pleasure the recent endorsement by the NDA Leadership Council in
    Asmara of the CPA. We consider the Agreement and the protocols that led to it present a
    very helpful framework for solving the problems that have led to decades of civil war in the
    Sudan. The principles of participation, democracy, decentralisation, human rights, and
    equitable sharing of resources are at the heart of the Agreement and raise expectations in
    the whole of the Sudan. We also believe that our discussions in Nairobi will provide
    encouragement for the ongoing negotiations between the Government of Sudan and the
    NDA, and separately with the Beja Congress Free Lions and other groups from the East of
    Sudan.
    3. We consider that many of the principles established by the Concordis International
    consultations in September and December 2004 in Cambridge, UK, for people of Darfur,
    can be applied directly or indirectly to Eastern Sudan. In particular, we wish to emphasise
    that a peaceful future for Eastern Sudan depends on long-term solutions to issues of:
    a. cultural, political and economic marginalisation;
    b. appropriate responses to climatic and other natural phenomena that have increased
    pressure on resources.
    4. We thank Concordis International for acting as a non-partisan facilitator and providing an
    inclusive forum for discussion of these issues. Concordis has distilled the detailed contents
    of our discussions and will make them available to interested parties as soon as possible.
    However, the following brief outline summarises our discussions and main
    recommendations.
    Marginalisation of Eastern Sudan
    5. The problem of marginalisation of the Sudanese regions has existed since the colonial
    period and persisted after independence. The people of the region have lacked access to
    resources, leading to low levels of education, poor health, poverty and armed resistance to
    Government control. It is important to work towards a common understanding of the many
    economic, historical, political, geographical, cultural and tribal factors that lie behind the
    current situation of marginalisation. It is then possible to develop constructive forwardlooking
    proposals to improve the situation.
    2
    Access to Land and Natural Resources
    6. The traditional resilience of the Beja and other groups of Eastern Sudan has been
    challenged by external factors. For example, long-established survival strategies for
    cyclical drought have been affected by agricultural schemes, irrigation, dams, gold-mining
    and the growth of Port Sudan, which have all put pressure on pastoralists and led to partial
    abandonment of pastoralism. The CPA establishes the principle of State Land
    Commissions, and such bodies should be formed in Eastern Sudan, operating
    transparently and with broad representation, to match the aspirations of local people.
    7. Ports, gold mining and natural resources in Eastern Sudan produce revenue for the central
    Government but it is not clear that much of this revenue is ploughed back into the region.
    In addition, environmental damage from these activities is a burden on local people.
    Transparency and environmental protection in this area should be increased.
    Access to Education and Employment
    8. The rates of education in Eastern Sudan, especially among women, are very low. Access
    to education can improve quality of life and ability to cope, and increases the effective use
    of human resources, for the benefit of Sudan. Factors producing low rates of education
    include: poverty; hunger and disease; traditional attitudes; language barriers; curricula and
    teaching language that are inappropriate to local understanding; and low budget allocation.
    It is important both to provide sufficient resources for education that is appropriate to local
    needs (e.g. education suiting nomadic lifestyles, use of radio broadcast by local people in
    local languages, affordable boarding facilities at schools and universities, combined khalwa
    and kindergarten for girls) and to provide incentives to parents.
    9. The most appropriate way to increase employment in Eastern Sudan, which would also
    have a beneficial effect on health and education, is to improve conditions for animal
    husbandry and small-scale agriculture, although other sources of employment are also of
    value (e.g. tourism and fisheries). Affordable small-scale finance for agriculture and small
    enterprise should be made more easily available (e.g. the Grameen Bank). While the
    Government of Sudan is already working on these areas, transparency and participation by
    local people in decision-making on these programmes is crucial. This demands
    transparent planning not only at national but also at state level.
    Access to Justice and Human Security
    10. The modernising shift away from traditional authorities for dealing with crime and disputes
    is not entirely positive. Ways need to be found of harnessing the advantages of the
    respected traditional (tribal) authorities alongside modern legal systems. Most important is
    to make the role and accountability of traditional and local authorities clear, with training if
    necessary.
    11. If reconciliation is to be successful and relapse into war avoided, appropriate ways must be
    found both to return former combatants to society or integrate them in the National Army
    and to adjust the role of the military so that it serves the genuine needs of Sudan. These
    requirements are well covered in the CPA’s provisions for DDR and for military doctrine.
    However, sustainable peace in Eastern Sudan depends on the application of these
    concepts there and not only in the South. In addition, the families of those who have lost
    their lives or become disabled through the conflict should be appropriately compensated.
    Furthermore, geographical areas affected by war and conflict should be rehabilitated,
    including mine clearance.
    3
    Relationship with Neighbouring Countries
    12. Eastern Sudan has borders with three countries and is linked to several Arabian countries
    via the Red Sea. This gives the region much potential, both in terms of markets (the
    informal sector is already very active in cross-border trade) and as a focus of improved
    relations between Sudan and her neighbours. (For example, the disputed “Halaib triangle”
    has potential to be a focus of co-operation between Egypt and Sudan.) Every effort should
    be made to encourage and to regulate cross-border relations by building on the already
    positive relationships at community level. In particular, tribal leaders on opposite sides of
    borders are well placed to encourage cordial cross-border relations.
    Recommendations
    13. We recommend to the Government of National Unity and interested international
    governments and organisations, as appropriate, the following measures.
    a. The NDA, with particular regard to the terms for the Beja Congress Free Lions agreed
    in Asmara in February 2005, and other concerned political groups should be fully
    involved in major decisions at the national level affecting Eastern Sudan.
    b. The Commission for the Development of Eastern Sudan, with full representation of
    local peoples, should formulate a properly resourced Poverty Eradication Strategy
    which specifically addresses basic needs in Eastern Sudan, with the support of the
    World Bank.
    c. State Land Commissions should be formed in Eastern Sudan, making use of UNDP
    research into land legislation in Sudan and operating transparently with broad
    representation to endow and entitle the people of Eastern Sudan. Their aims should be
    to incorporate customary practices into the law, to increase complementary use of land
    by various types of land users, in particular taking account of the needs of small-scale
    farming and pastoralism (e.g. to encourage growing of fodder, to clarify livestock
    migration routes and to increase local understanding of land use rights).
    d. The Government of Sudan should provide accurate information on the quantity and
    value of gold mined in Eastern Sudan and the proportion of this value retained in the
    region and/or spent on environmental protection. The people of Eastern Sudan should
    be institutionally involved in decision-making on how this resource is used.
    e. State governments should be sufficiently resourced to provide education appropriate to
    the lifestyle of nomadic groups and educational radio broadcasts by local people in
    local languages.
    f. Research should be undertaken into appropriate incentives and reassurance for
    parents to send girls and boys to school, and funding provided to implement the
    recommendations.
    g. A review of the local justice system needs to take place clarifying the role of traditional
    authorities and improving the accountability of the system.
    h. To achieve a short-term impact, adult education and training should focus on practical
    knowledge and skills (e.g. mathematics and training in food processing, drying fish,
    health work, plumbing, mechanics, welding) and incentives given to teachers.
    i. The potential for affirmative action for Eastern Sudanese in allocating public sector jobs
    under the auspices of the National Civil Service Commission, regionally and in
    Khartoum, should be explored.
    j. Any administrative barriers to provision of microfinance with long repayment timescales
    in Eastern Sudan, by Sudanese and international NGOs should be removed.
    k. Finance should be provided to reinvigorate the Tokar, Gash and el-Girpa agricultural
    projects, with special attention to encouraging small-scale farming and protecting and
    respecting customary land use and tenure rights of local people.
    4
    l. Investment in Eastern Sudan should be focused on rural infrastructure to enable smallscale
    producers to bring their products to market at reduced risk (e.g. rural roads,
    railway, fodder storage, affordable veterinary services, livestock pens, facilities for local
    processing of produce, more liberal export licensing regime).
    m. Ways of improving livelihoods in Eastern Sudan should be investigated and should
    receive investment (e.g. infrastructure projects, “food for work”, fisheries, building on
    traditional jewellery skills of Rashaida women).
    n. As provided in the CPA, following a cease-fire, former combatants in Eastern Sudan
    should either be incorporated in the national forces and the civil service with a fair
    recognition of seniority, or assisted in returning to their home areas with appropriate
    financial assistance. This assistance should include compensation to families for loss
    of life and disability where appropriate.
    o. A market survey should be undertaken to determine how exports from Eastern Sudan
    to neighbouring countries can be encouraged.
    p. An institutional framework should be provided to disseminate the CPA and raise
    awareness of civic, legal and gender rights especially in rural areas.
    q. Centres providing basic services should be built for nomadic peoples where appropriate.
    Conclusion
    14. This consultation, organised by Concordis International, has been a valuable opportunity to
    focus in depth on the issues facing Eastern Sudan. There is a continuing need for this type
    of informal, inclusive dialogue, both to ensure that the detailed implementation of the CPA
    matches the aspirations of the people of Eastern Sudan and to build popular support for the
    agreement, as the foundation for long-term peace and national unity.


                  

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