African Intellect, Between Political Preconception and Human Consciousness
“The Model of the Sudanese Unity”
Mahmoud E. Yousif
The dominant concept about Southern hatred towards Sudanese unity is the evilness of Galaba and their intellects! But a question could be asked, are the whole northern Sudanese structure consist only from this Galaba?
Mulana Mohamed Oman Al-Mergani, Dr. Hider Ibrahim, Amir Abdulla Khalil, Mohamed Osman Saleh, Afaf Saleh, Mohamed mutasim Hakim, Dr. Ali Kogali and Bashire Ahmed Salman, these are samples from the north and non SPLM members, but became known to many SPLM/A members in Kampala, Nairobi and Cairo, they stood with justice concepts, and equality till the end, many of them participated to achieve these, and they with many others paid dearly, but did SPLM leaders reacted positive towards that? And does African intellects knows about that?
But who are these Galaba, and how many does they represents in the Sudanese society? Generally what is the percentage of Northern at upper Sudan? And what they represents in comparison to the total population of Sudan? Are they 10% or 15%? Then what is the percentage of Galaba among them? And what does they represents to the others 5%?
Isn’t Dr. Johan Garang who said “even the Dinka can become Galaba”! Didn’t he?
The most important question is, with whom Southern will live in the united Sudan? Did Southern hate people of Nuba, Fung or Darfurian? Those people lived together with Southern during the war in the South, in Nuba, in Blue Nile and even in Darfur with Hilu-Bolad, even northern lived with southern in South during the war in areas controlled by SPLM/A in Totit, Kapuita, Yei, Rumbek and Maridi, as many Southern lived even in Eastern Sudan, and they became part of these places.
Those from the extreme North whom I mentioned and many others, represents the core towards building Sudan of justice with human face. They were not running after financial gains in the South, rather it is that feelings of belonging to this country which the Nuba greatly participated in establishing through military establishments and civil rights struggles in different era, more than the people of North, they were the fighting force, keeping law and order during the Turkish and in Mahdist, where they were promoted to high ranks, and they were the bulky of the Anglo-Egyptian force till 1924, and many other input which can be disclose, if not the current cloudy environment.
Someone may say there are many deformities in the ruling Sudanese establishment, yeas everyone agree with that, even the president Omer Hassan Al-Bashire, said at Naivash on December 31, 2005 “Tonight Sudan got new Independence”, these words carried deep important meanings, first it is recognition of past negativisms, the chance was great for SPLM to make that great transformations where Southern may find himself in, before others!
But what is the ideal character or personality of Southern that SPLM leaders are thinking to formulate from the current Southern populations? Or in another way, what is the shape of Southern, supposed to be formulated after some decades?
Replaying to this required us to asked, “what is the ideal personality aimed to by humanity?”, this question is related to the perceived type of life, exhibited by degree of happiness and happy life? Is it the Ugandan example? The Kenyan? Ethiopian? British? Or the South African example?
There are specific qualities that exist only in Sudan, such as: generosity, nobility, supports for weaker, tolerance, liberality, popular direction, social supports, generosity to neighbors, respects to elders and others which only existed in the Sudanese society. These values are the one ignited 1964 revolution in consolidation with the cause of people of the South against the military junta of November 1958/64, it is the one which lead to the upraising of April 1984 for the cause of people of South among others, they are the values of the voiceless groups, who got out welcoming Dr. John Garang on July 8, 2008. Are Southern values doesn’t existed within these values? did SPLM leadership thought of that?
Till mid eighties, there was a big sign posted in the United Nations square in Khartoum written on it the followings:
WE THE PEOPLES OF THE UNITED NATIONS DETERMINED
- to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind, and
- to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small, and
- to establish conditions under which justice and respect for the obligations arising from treaties and other sources of international law can be maintained, and
- to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom,
These words participated in the formation of many concepts which been destroyed, Sudanese used to think the Movement will restore these concepts, it is among the reason they came out in millions welcoming Dr. John Garang, in order to restore these values, that could have participated in the building of Sudanese personality including the Southern.
Let us take a country like South Africa, many doesn’t know about Nelson Mandela greatness, that he refused to be given his personal freedom in exchange of recognizing the Apartheid regime, he refused a racial South Africa that could be control by Black Africans, his human dimension is the one behind the present Rainbow Nation, it was not the others values, all of us remember the tragedy of Africans migrants, particularly the Zimbabweans, how many were they, while facing Mugabe at home?
These happened in an advanced economical country like South Africa, which has African debts of sympathy and supports during the struggles! Take the Sudanese, in early eighties, there were more than one million Africans in Sudan, we all knows Ethiopians and Eritreans houses in Gadarif, Kassala, Port Sudan, even at areas of Al-Grief and Deum Al-Shargia in Khartoum, did any of them was killed, because of their economical activities? There was the Congolese in Yei, Ragaf and Maridi, they even reached Khartoum and competed with Sudanese Watchmakers, and Fishermen in Juba and Charcoals Traders in Ragaf, did any of them been chased? The Chadians were another story, they entered lived and returned to power twice, Habri in 1982 and Debi in 1990, and they are still living in different cities of Sudan! The Ugandans, when Amin was defeated in 1979, they were given agricultural lands at Keit (60 miles on Juba Nimoli road), and Tori (40 miles Yei Maridi road), many doesn’t know there were many Kenyans who took refuge in Sudan between 1958/60, one of them was King Machari he studied in Sudanese education establishments, and graduated as a medical doctor, but prefer to work in Sudan till he died (I think in nineties), God bless him, other Kenyans took refuge after the failed coup in 1982, they were not chased nor forbidden from works, non was killed, it is characteristic all of us should be proud of, from Nimoli to Halfa, from Port Sudan to Al-Ginyna, because it is a Sudanese, it was not for interests or gains, it is for humanity, where can you get this?
During the recent World Cup on 18 June 2010 at 7:30 p.m., Aljazeera English channel interviewed Holland supporters, one of them traveled to South Africa by land, they passed several countries, he spoke about the trip saying, one of the best countries he passed through was Sudan, “Sudanese are good people, everywhere they welcome us to their houses and insisting we are to eat”, it was good talks about us as a nation, at that time I felt proud as a Sudanese, this is not an Arabian or African culture, it is a Sudanese resulted from interactions of many cultures and civilizations.
In sixties, and nineties Southern teachers and students were taken to the North for educations and works during the closures of schools in the South, the impressions of all of them were very good, and it is a long story.
I talked in depth about Religions with brother Yousif Kuwa, particularly Islam, he was equitable and believed in the rights of every person in faith through personal conviction, and worship according to these convictions, for that reasons and as the Patron of the New Sudan Islamic Council (NSIC) he applied to Mulana Mohamed Osman Al-Mergani, for the membership of the International Islamic Council, that was on 14 August 2000 (I have a copy of that).
The greatness of a state based on Humanity, aimed at by perfect soul, is to satisfied every material and spiritual requirements of all individuals, and our relations with Metaphysics is too complicated for any person to judge righteous and wrong of any religion, but the perfections state is the one which provides the elements to create compatibility, internal mental and psychological balance in personality of each citizens, this can’t be attained except through believes in general principles of Human Rights, and to transform this into civilized behaviors, as some of which used to exist in seventies.
A friend from the South, who grow up in Latin America, asked me one time, “Sudan is a large country, why people can’t stay together?”, I don’t know what to replay except saying “Maybe we need to bring the Chinese whose numbers are large and staying in small area, to teach us how to manage staying together!”, this area which can bear more than 4 billion in Chinese standards, isn’t it capable to bear only 40 millions, and to transform it into heaven? What a shame!
Back to African efforts, last year an International Sudan Studies Conference was held under theme “The FUTURE PERSPECTIVES FOR SOUTHERN SUDAN BEYOND 2011 -MAJOR CHALLENGES & STAKES FOR THE EMPOWERMENT OF GOSS AND THE AFRICAN UNIONFuture of Sudan to 2011 and Beyond : African Dimensions of Peace, Stability, Justice and Reconciliation”, at the University of South Africa, Pretoria between 22-26 November 2009.
Regardless of papers presented, no paper tackled the future of the three areas, their expectations, the interim period, during which efforts supposed to be exerted for making unity attractive, or at least giving it a chance, unfortunately there wasn’t a paper about making unity attractive or at least giving unity a chance, rather all concentration was on the referendum and what may result from it.
The conference was a good African chance to exert some efforts, particularly when the Conference final communiqué mentioned the following among others:
“We are fully aware that the Sudan is facing serious challenges in its political stability, national integrity and sovereignty and that the country is heading towards a bleak future unless serious and genuine measures are urgently undertaken to defuse the prevailing tensions and help promote and maintain justice, peace, security, reconciliation and unity -- conditions vital to development and to the serious amelioration of the condition of women, children, internally displaced people, and refugees”
It also included a strong appeal for CPA parties to the, IGAD and the troika (the USA, UK and Norway), to the African Union and the United Nations, and to all political forces and civil society in Sudan, to put in place measures that will ensure that credible elections and referendums are held in accordance with the CPA and the Interim National Constitution and the Constitution of Southern Sudan;
It was mentioned that, Sudan is facing many challenges, and it call for the work to help promote and maintain justice, peace, security, reconciliation and unity, but how? While many are convinced with the ideas, that elections and referendum should be carried out peacefully, till South is disconnected, and here appear the most important question, did unity been given a chance by both parties? And did the others tried to achieve that? Or everybody just surrender to that defeatist status, which is to be imposed on Sudanese?
As we mentioned, we will try to answer some of these questions, with great hope it will represents a positive participations for reviews, so that people may know something about our background as Sudanese, and what may brings us as African with the greater Human society, which I with many like me, were convinced it was the main aim of SPLM/A.
Mandela said “I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony……It is an ideal which I hope to live for and achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”
He also said during the opening of the first democratic elected parliament in South Africa “The government I have the honor to lead and I dare say the masses who elected us to serve in this role, are inspired by the single vision of creating a people-centered society. Accordingly, the purpose that will drive this government shall be the expansion of the frontiers of human fulfillment, the continuous extension of the frontiers of the freedom.”
The time span for Mandela speech was three decades, during which human dignity was achieved in South Africa, for both the white and Black, can we know some secrets of life between the two quotes? The question is, did the distance that separates us as Sudanese greater than that used to exist in South Africa? If Mandela did it, is it impossible for us? Particularly with some hopes from statements by regional and International Organizations to works towards making unity attractive, as stated by the CPA, of course the Sudanese people of Southern Sudan are the one finally to determined their own destiny, I hope they will do that with great awareness knowing their background. But where is Darfur within all thisvortexes? We will continued.
Mahmoud E. Yousif
Former SPLM member