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ISSUES that Rose From the Sudanese Ambassador Press Conference By Jwothab Amum Ajak
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Jul 5, 2007 - 5:24:32 AM

ISSUES that Rose
From the Sudanese Ambassador Press Conference
 
By Jwothab Amum Ajak
 
There was no way to convince a score of skeptics, like myself, about how bad what his honorable our ambassador in Washington said and how he said it. As the saying goes “seeing is believing” hence we had to leave, for a while our raging debate and rerun the video. The conclusion reached by many, including the Ambassador proponents, after watching and hearing him a live that he was for sure not at his best wit. But more that his unwarranted and uncalled fierce assault on the just cause of Darfur was not something expected to come from member of a friendly party like SPLM particularly at this critical time when all the cards are on the table for Darfur.
 
Initially Khartoum wanted an ambassador who belongs to SPLM to be the mouth piece to play the crack records of President Bashir’s lies. They find no better able volunteer than our honorable Mr. Ambassador. Khartoum would desire the dirty work of killing the Darfur problem by a friendly fire. That was no coincident I believe it is the result of a carefully orchestrated plans to use whoever is there as a proxy pawn in the war to confuse facts and conceal Khartoum crimes.   This seems to be succeeding, to Khartoum advantage of course, through the Ambassador statement of denial of rape, war crimes and atrocities etc. The Ambassador until recently held contrary ideas to what he said at the conference. This evidence shows he took on board Khartoum lies and dropped his own which is also SPLM position.
 
Very strange that an SPLM diplomat can turn himself into NCP advocate promoting NCP policies. No where in the world that one political partner becomes acquiescent and accomplice to the agenda and programs of the other partner particularly when the two SPLM and NCP policies, are opposed and conflicting each other. SPLM values and long-standing support for the people of Darfur cannot be sacrificed at the alter of GNU under whatever pretext. If SPLM –Government of South Sudan is not able on their own to do good to the just cause of Darfur at least they must refuse to cooperate with and become partners to the game of deception and lies by NCP
 
With this unpretentious situation Dr. Garang struggle for the marginalized people is being trivialized. However, his only console may be in the many inundated messages of overwhelming support of the sanction and the deployment of the Blue Berets. These messages of condemnation of the Ambassador’s statement, so far sent to the media, shows how out of touch he was with the feelings and thoughts of the party faithful.
 
The statement of the Ambassador may be a blessing in disguise so that SPLM take a hard look at the event and its repercussions, because there is no use crying over spilled milk. Otherwise if this trend continues, SPLM will either end without its principles, policies and vision put under a bushel or they will be compromised and diluted. What will SPLM be then, a party without color or shape, a party only given its color and shape by the container or vessel in which it is placed, GNU. In this case SPLM will no longer be a party, the marginalized people of Sudan, sees as their hope.
 
What this should mean and matters now for SPLM or SPLM led GOSS is to come up with the necessary fire fighting strategies that will prevent and lessen the damages that ensue from such exercise. Most importantly is to put in place the corrective or remedial actions to prevent such fires from occurring in the first place otherwise the same mistakes will repeat itself somewhere once again. I mean to say unless we resolve the issue of the reference point, where our ministers, ambassadors and other officials get their instructions particularly in regard to important press releases and statements we will continue to be at a loss.
 
Generally SPLM- led GOSS role should be pivotal in the re-orientatation of its own cadre particularly junior officials, before they join different central departments so that they are able to differentiate the woods from the trees and capable of giving to Caesar what belongs to him only. We should not rely on the federal departments. For they have not changed a bit. The heavy -loaded radical Islamist bureaucratic training stuff is still the menu being served at present, as if there had not been CPA or GONU, an old wine in new wine skins. For example they still preached that the animists in South Sudan compromise the majority of the South Sudan people. Accordingly Christians make somewhere between 10 and 15 percent of the total population. Statistically speaking Christians might have doubled or tripled due to unprecedented Christian’s revival movement. The essence of the problem is that SPLM- led GOSS has to have her own ideas, policies and input as part of those training or re-orientation programs.
 
Going back to the Ambassador statement many categorically agree that there was not a shred of diplomacy there. Nothing was diplomatic about his voice, words and body language. He was more or less delivering a harangue rather than a diplomatic point of view. If this could be the performance of the best, then this call into question how the rest not fortunate enough to have his education and long experience, could speak or conduct themselves and fair as diplomats?
 
The many denunciations and condemnations of what the Ambassador said and the firm support Washington continued to enjoy for her sanction against Sudan would make the host country understand and ultimately dismiss what the Ambassador said as a guff not of a banana republic but of a failed state diplomat. A failed state is a state unable or unwilling to protect its own citizens from violence or even destruction. Its other characteristic criterion or index is that it is “democracy deficit.” The Sudanese state typically fits very well with the definition. People are being killed in Darfur, yet the authoritarian President is deaf to the voice of conscience and people.   The killing must come to an end and he must allow the Blue Berets to do the job he is failing to do by any measure.
 
Supporting the issues of the marginalized people all over Sudan not only the Darfur problems is a well-beaten path by our late Chairman Dr John Garang. Yet, Mr. Ambassador has shown willful defiance of SPLM position on Darfur. Instead he chose to come up with a different paradigm or stance. Nevertheless if Mr. Ambassador wants to show a new way or make a new policy for the party and he could, however, he should pull out from the diplomatic corpse and go to Juba-Khartoum rather than being in Washington where he is acting a kingdom unto himself.
 
You can’t change party policies through press conferences in a foreign land. Policy change has to go through the party room meetings, workshops etc. Also you can’t be selective which policies to abide by and which not to follow. The strength and future of any organization depends on its ability to hold fast to its principles and its members to adhere to discipline. Party discipline and rules is for all otherwise there will be leaks and cracks in the organization, like what happened.
 
Mr. Ambassador has completely fallen in step with the NCP policies and was marching to the tone of National Congress Party propaganda machine. And with deliberate intention and conviction he was reading the NCP’s notes which turned the victims of aggression into an aggressor and the problem of underdevelopment created by the regime to be due to the insurgent groups. It was not a question that the Ambassador mixed things up and played with the wrong cards. Because SPLM cards or official stance on the sanction issues and other relevant topics on Darfur are not only distinctly clear but they are at least just a telephone or a button touch away from him. However, he intentionally chose not to do so thus bringing into question SPLM trust and commitment to the Darfur people.
 
Sanction, if we accept the logic of consequences, is like a targeted blow. Supposedly, like any blow, if it misses its aim, does not mean the Sudanese people were the one targeted. Sanction, I understand, is meant to collapse the economic and financial nerve centers of the regime, long used to oppress its own people and stay in power as well as to perpetrate the war of genocide against the African people in Darfur. This war is an exact replica to the war which was going on for decades in South Sudan.
 
Leave the fact that Washington which strongly desires to save the people of Darfur from misery, suffering and hardship cannot turn a blind eye to any untoward effects that can ensue from sanction. So there will be a world of possibilities to come out with any dialogue with Washington on how to avoid or mitigate the effects of sanction on the Sudanese people in general. After all we were never better off without sanction and we will never be worse off than we are now with sanction. Again Darfurians benefits from sanction are not totally incompatible with South Sudanese or for that matter with other Sudanese groups’ interests.
 
Sanction, is a golden opportunity for GOSS to ask Washington and other guarantors of CPA to come up in the interim period, when sanction is operating, with alternative to petrol revenues and to speed implementing the border demarcation between North and South. This last option will wrestle control of the oil fields from that power- hungry, justice-fearing and wealth-sharing averse “religious men” of Ingaz. Thus put an end to cheating with oil revenues.
 


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