Articles and Analysies
An Islamists’ failed Attempt at Slaughtering the CPA on Christmas! By: Dr. Justin Ambago Ramba, MD.
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Dec 24, 2009 - 9:33:20 AM

An Islamists’ failed Attempt at Slaughtering the CPA on Christmas!

By: Dr. Justin Ambago Ramba, MD.


The year 2009 will be remembered in the Sudan for the myriads of the political developments that evolved as a result of an accumulated political oppression under a suppressive regime as represented in the NIF/NCP’s grip to all pillars of powers in defiance of all the different peace agreements it has so far signed with the various regional and national Sudanese political groups in the name of the so-called national reconciliation.  


To make this particular year a very exceptional landmark in the modern history of the Sudan , all the hidden evils unexpectedly, and in the most an unprecedented sequence completely emerged and dominated the entirety of our socioeconomic and political scenes.


These are nothing new but the previously unattended to problems that collectively pose a significant    threat to the very existence of the Sudan not only as a united country, but even one that can never be accepted into the international community without in fact first having to worry about its human rights records and quality of governance.


Since it all started in March by the issuance of the ICC arrest warrant to the incumbent president Omer al Bashir for his role in the crimes committed in Darfur, an event that the NIF/NCP reacted to by reserving to itself the monopoly to organise any mass demonstrations in the country, and indeed it did carry one in condemnation of the warrant, suddenly    the country went back into an unofficially declared state of emergency.


The events in May 2009 when the Darfuri Justice and Equality Movement attacked the town of Omdurman in the heart of the united Sudanese capital city, has its shadow as well on the political environment that followed. If human rights were already in the abuse, however following the JEM’s attack, it virtually became non existent, specifically so of course for our brothers and sisters who happen to come from the same ethnic groups as the rebels i.e. the “western zurgha”.


On the CPA side, the partners to this historical document were surprised by the fact that an agreement that they so wisely intended to use for perusing their undeclared agents turned to have a price attached to it. The NIF/NCP was however quick to realize though much more earlier than its partner how the timely and fully implementation of the agreement that beside the two benchmarks of the general elections and the referenda, is indeed centred around an overall   democratic transformation of the political system in its totality. And in other wards a complete overhaul to the Sudanese politics that could leave them (NIF/NCP) exposed and vulnerable to changes from the other Sudanese political opposition forces as well as the traditional enemies in the West.


The southern SPLM on the other hand trusted much in the goodwill of the IGAD, the troika, the US government and the international community. There was and still is this strong believe amongst the people of south Sudan, who in no way have any trust in the dominant NIC/NCP and to some extend the northerners in general, that the international community would   always abide by its promises in seeing that the peace agreement is fully implement to both the letter and the spirit. The south Sudanese also expected and continue to expect that the US, UK, France, EU, AU and the IGAD would intervene and put pressure on the NIF/NCP to abide by the timely framework of the agreement given the well documented records of the NIF/NCP repeated failures to live up to the expectations in all its political agreements be it locally or internationally.


The real fears of the people of south Sudan, lies in the fact that the President Obama’s administration has chosen a means too soft for dealing with this basically rogue regime in Khartoum.   If there is a one-word handle that fits the conduct of foreign relations in Barack Obama's first year as the American president, it is "engagement." The Obama administration has engaged with Iran , Russia , Burma , Sudan , and North Korea . "Engagement" sounds harmless -- something any sensible administration would do (though the Bush administration apparently did far less of it).


However though, this so-called policy of engagement might have earned the US President what is perceived worldwide as a premature Noble Prize, to some conservatives, engagement thus sounds like a euphemism for "appeasement." Max Boot, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, argues, "There is a perception around the world that Obama is proceeding on bended knee to our enemies, and they're rebuffing us contemptuously."


Obviously with just a quick look at the CPA, we can see that there still exist disagreements in everything that the two signatories have so far engaged to bring about. The so-called government of National Unity (GoNU) without any biasness is nothing but a big failure. Why? Well events are all over the place to tell you why.


Take it in any order as you please, but the truth remains that the following key benchmarks remain to be areas of gross disagreement: the 5th Census Results, the Abyei Protocol ( even after the Hague arbitrations) ,   the distribution of the Oil Revenue( as exposed by some quarters that the south is in fact receiving less than its share) , the Security bill ( as opposed to the CPA, which restricts the role of the security to only gathering information) , the elections(geographical constituencies drawn on grossly disputed Census results) ), the north/south border demarcation ( too much intentionally delayed because of the north’s greed over the south’s Oil fields that lie along the borders) , the voters’ registration ( reported frauds both in the north and the south).


And now finally the referendum bill which was intentionally passed by a mechanical majority in the absence of the SPLM and the other south Sudanese MPs,   despite   their   declared    opposition to the controversial and unilateral sinister inclusion of paragraphs that would allow any Sudanese who resides   in the north to claim an unverified southern origins and be allowed to vote in the referendum, as opposed to the initial agreement reached between NCP and SPLM at both the Presidency and the Council of Ministers.





Following what happened in the parliament in Omdurman on Tuesday, 22nd December , the reactions that came from the different camps clearly shows to an outsider how distanced the Sudanese people remain to be,   far from ever finding the right solutions to their chronic ailments. SPLM Deputy Chairman, Riek Machar, said ’by endorsing the bill in the absence of Southern Sudan parties, the National Legislature appears to be representing northern Sudan '.



Meanwhile, Deputy Head of SPLM bloc in the National Assembly, Thomas Wani Igga, said that his party will not recognize the Southern Sudan Referendum Bill endorsed on Tuesday. Speaking to Miraya FM, Wani said that SPLM will now completely boycott parliamentary sessions and will not participate in any activity.



The above are unfortunately the latest position of the SPLM, a party whose Secretary General Ustaz Pa’gan Amum, who can still be   quoted as less than two weeks ago and    in a personal style and   a mood loaded with emotions and euphoria declared that ,” we have got what we want and as such our problems with the NCP is over”. “And now our MPs can    return to the Parliament within 24 hours,” he added.



Comparing the above SPLM position to the one of the NIF/NCP, one can clearly see the opposing directions as to which our so-called peace partners are set to function whereas    in practice they are none but real-life antagonists. Dating some months back, the Speaker of the Sudanese National Assembly Ibrahim Attahir and the   chairperson of the referendum sub-committee   Ms Bedriya Suleiman, both of the NCP have more than once declared their party’s intension of not only complicating matters ahead of the south Sudanese’s referendum, but their readiness to bring out laws that would make it difficult if not impossible for south Sudan to secede through a referendum.  




Based on the negative stance declared by the NCP towards the referendum, the party wasted no time or opportunity at different levels including the Presidency in frustrating the efforts of the south Sudanese to get a consensus on the simple majority needed to decide the outcome of the referendum. This was to be followed by the marathon negotiations between the two camps and eventually the Monday 7th December 2009 popular demonstrations.



With the new dimensions added to an already volatile situation, the NCP found itself battling with the SPLM and the Sudanese opposition forces on one hand and the international community on the other as it ruthless moved in and disrupted the intended peaceful march while detaining some prominent political figures including the SPLM’s Secretary General himself and his deputy.



But in a very suspicious U - turn the NCP agreed to accept the simple majority vote to declare the independence of south Sudan should that be the   choice come 2011. However it tactfully isolated the SPLM from the main opposition block by falsely declaring that a committee would be formed to review the other bills, including the much contested security bill.



Yet to prove the sceptics right, the NIF/NCP never lived up to its promises as usually is the case. They went ahead and endorsed the security bill in its worse form without the involvement of the northern opposition’s parties, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), and SPLM MPs. Though the opposing block maintained their rejections to the bill and vowed to fight it at all fronts, the NCP never wasted time in striking again the following day when it for the second time in a row resorted to its mechanical majority in the Parliament and yet passed another secretly amended version of the referendum bill.




Putting all the above aside, yet to all those who closely followed this unfolding melodrama, it is the much delayed jubilations of the NCP MPs that immediately followed   the endorsement of the Referendum bill despite the boycott   by its SPLM partner and the southern MPs that   remains to raise many eye brows. And to crown it all,   the ark-enemy of the CPA, non other, but the pro-NCP Speaker Ibrahim Attahir and Ms Bedriya Suleiman  , went full swing to   conclude by thanking those who signed the CPA as well as those who participated in passing a law that they  referred to as the most tenacious in a clear gesture that they (NCP MPs), have excelled in their duty to pass the referendum law in its   most deformed form thus fulfilling   their vows to make the secession of south difficult if not impossible.



As we are already in the Christmas season, putting all the above trail of events together including the way the National Assembly ended its life span on the 23 December 2009, it can rightly be summed up in Ibrahim Attahir’s sarcastic comments which prominently stands  as a clear evidence that the Islamists terrorists on their side have attempted to spoil the Christmas celebrations for the southerners through   their unsuccessful attempt at   slaughtering the CPA just a few days ahead of this great religions and social event,  in a much carefully calculated move  than any coincidence can account for.



With all eyes towards President Barack Obama to step in and save the situation, as one can   with the least doubt   analyse the NCP recurrent inconsistencies as a clear call for outside help and much so from the US administration. We should not be fooled that this regime is doing well with all the sanctions in place. They are suffocating now and they need a breathing space that can only be offered by engaging the USA .


 But on our side as south Sudanese, while anticipating more trilateral engagements in the few coming days, we must realize that a plan “B” is becoming more of an urgency should we seriously want to maintain our grip on our land and resources. This enemy clearly responds only to pressure and we jointly (the international community included), need to exert that pressure, constantly, consistently, and tirelessly. This may not be the best Christmas given the accompanying events, yet it’s worth reminding ourselves of the true meaning of the occasion. This is a time to meditate and remain vigilant. And as long as we remain focused, they will never get away with it.


No much to say, but on behave of my colleagues in the United South Sudan Party (USSP), I wish    all the South Sudanese Nationals , A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. May we all emerge in 2010 as yet fresh warriors to continue the struggle and the long walk towards the Promised Land? Amen.


Dr. Justin Ambago Ramba, M.B, B.Ch, D.R.H, MD. The Secretary General of the United South Sudan Party (USSP). The party that stands for the independence of South Sudan . Can be reached at either [email protected] or [email protected]




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