Why Does SPLM Deny the Right of Southerners in the Diaspora?
By: Deng Mulwal
The referendum which will take place in
after two years aims at knowing the views of all Southerners in their relation with the Sudanese state to decide with their own wish if they want to remain part of the
in the light of the security,
political and economical gains achieved by the Comprehensive Peace Agreement or otherwise prefer secession to establish their own independent state.
However, it is a historical decision which every Southerner should participate in it being inside the south or in the north or even in the Diaspora.
As for those in the Diaspora, it is their right to have a say and their remaining outside the country is not an excuse to deny that right as one day they will come back to their home country because their stay outside the country's geographic borders is temporary.
It is strange from the SPLM to ask for limiting the voting on the southerners living in the area of the southern region while excluding those living in the north or those who took refuge in other countries despite the fact that they are in the SPLM favour and some of them are activists within its ranks.
SPLM knows that the Government of Southern Sudan has failed to achieve the development missions or establishing the main infrastructures or providing the education and health services or job opportunities for those outside the Southern part of the country to encourage them return to their homelands.
Even those who returned to the South left again heading to northern
after they discovered that the region is repulsive and without any services, work or residence.
By denying the right of those citizens the SPLM is punishing them twice, firstly through its failure to avail the appropriate environment for their return and secondly by denying their right in voting.
The idea of limiting the voting for those who are in the south was presented at the day of Khartoum Peace Agreement signed by Dr. Riek Machar with the Sudanese government and the SPLM rejected the idea; then what are the justifications that convinced the movement to adopt the idea or marginalizing southerners just because they are not living within the geographical borders of the region by denying their right in participating in such a historic decision? The SPLM should think twice before making final decision!