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Sudan Referendum Watch

December 09, 2010 - South Sudan

As the referendum approaches for Southern Sudan in January of next year to gain independence from Northern Sudan, our new Nursing & Midwifery College in Juba, awaits the results anxiously.  Our partner at the UNFPA in Sudan sends us these weekly media summaries as everyone prepares for the voting.


UN Referendum Watch December 7th, 2010

  • Presidency to hold an important meeting today (Dailies)
  • Misseriya agree to one of Mbeki’s proposals on Abyei (Al-Sahafa)
  • SAF, SPLA sign framework agreement to secure oil fields (Dailies)
  • National companies excluded from referendum ballot printing (Al-Rai Al-Aam)
  • British firm to print Sudan referendum ballots (AFP)
  • Arab tribes in the South file suit against SSRC (Al-Intibaha)
  • SSRC request Justice Ministry to establish referendum courts (Al-Intibaha)
  • SPLM-DC accuses SPLM and the SSRC of hampering voter registration (Al-Ayyam)
  • Talks between Gen. Athor and GoSS (Al-Intibaha)
  • Goss President Kiir meets Menkerios and Margelov (Al-Sudani)
  • Neither the South nor the North prepared for the referendum result – UN (Al-Wifaq)
  • No elections in the north if the south secedes – Nafie (Al-Sahafa)
  • SPLM rules out hosting Darfur armed groups after the referendum (Al-Ayyam)
  • SPLM threatens to conduct a unilateral referendum on Abyei (Al-Tayyar)


Other Headlines

  • UN providing heavy arms to Darfur rebels – South Darfur Governor Kasha (al-Akhbar)
  • Presidential adviser criticizes South Sudan role in Darfur conflict (ST)
  • Security raided Interim Authority HQ in El Fasher, arrest Minnawi’s cadres (the Citizen)
  • Authorities stop Radio Dabanga broadcasts (Al-Ahram Al-Youm)


Presidency to hold an important meeting today

Dailies – The Presidency is to hold a meeting today to resolve pending CPA including Abyei territory based on proposals submitted by AUHIP Chair Thabo Mbeki. NCP Secretary Ibrahim Ghandour said the meeting would be attended by AUHIP as mediator.

GoSS Cabinet Minister Costa Manibi told reporters in Juba yesterday that the meeting would focus on outstanding issues including the border demarcation on the ground and Abyei. He said the meeting would be attended by GoSS Minister of Peace Pagan Amum and Minister of Regional Cooperation Deng Alor.

Al-Sudani reports that President Al-Bashir and his FVP Salva Kiir Mayardit embarked yesterday on a series of meetings on outstanding issues and the meetings would continue for a week or until the issues are resolved.

Meanwhile, sources said the NCP had rejected 5 of 6 proposals submitted by Mbeki, adding that Mbeki had modified the proposals by addition and omission and resubmitted them to the Presidency before leaving for Cote D’avoires but is likely to return today to take part in a decisive meeting of the Presidency.


Misseriya agree to one of Mbeki’s proposals on Abyei

Al-Sahafa Khartoum– Representatives of the Misseriya tribe said they had agreed to one of AUHLP Thabo Mbeki’s 6 proposals to the CPA partners on Abyei. Misseriya representatives speaking at a mass rally in Al-Mujlad yesterday, expressed confidence that the NCP would not let them down on Abyei, especially since their interests are in line with those of the NCP. The rally focused largely on how far the NCP was willing to guarantee the rights of the Misseriya in Abyei.


SAF, SPLA sign framework agreement to secure oil fields

Dailies – Federal Defence Minister Gen. Abdul Rahman Mohamed Hussein and SPLA Minister Nhial Deng Nhial signed yesterday a framework agreement in Falluj town in the Upper Nile to secure oil fields and installations south of 1956 border. The agreement is signed in presence of VP Ali Osman Taha and GoSS VP Riek Machar.

VP Taha, addressing the signing ceremony, said the two CPA partners’ agreement on oil security confirms the resolve of the Sudanese people to sustain peace based on the directives of President Al-Bashir and FVP Salva Kiir that there would be no return to war. “The protection will include oil fields, facilities, workers and companies,” he said.

Meanwhile, GoSS has confirmed its respect to all oil contracts signed before and after the CPA and stressed the need for mechanisms to resolve oil security-related problems.

According to the agreement, the JIUs will continue to secure oil fields in the South until 9 July 2011 based on the political directives to be agreed upon between the CPA parties after the referendum result is announced.

The two parties agreed that the JDB would meet to discuss the immediate implementation of the agreement and that the federal government and GoSS would provide amenities needed for the implementation.

SUNA reported that VP Ali Osman Taha said that the two CPA partners, the NCP and the SPLM, agreed to secure oil fields to ensure flow of the oil during the CPA implementation.

Taha underlined that the flow of oil represents the basis of the Sudanese economy now and in the future, whatever be the outcome of the referendum.

The agreement stipulated that security of the petroleum south of the border of 1956 is the responsibility of the joint integrated forces, and the security forces (of the National Security Organ and south Sudan Police).

The two parties agreed on formation of mechanism to observe implementation of the security plan and to carry out immediate intervention to contain any emergency incident, provided that this mechanism is to be headed by the federal Minister of Interior and the Minister of Interior of the Government of South Sudan as the deputy chairman, the Director of the Security and Intelligence Organ as member, Deputy Chairman of the Security and Intelligence Organ as member, the Commander of the Joint Integrated Forces and his deputy as members.


Arab tribes in the South file suit against SSRC

Al-Intibaha – Arab tribes in the South have filed a suit with the Constitutional Court challenging the latter’s refusal to register them as voters for the upcoming referendum, hinting further undisclosed steps should the SSRC continue to deny them the right to register.

Advocate Ghazi Suleiman, who participated at a press conference convened by the group yesterday, criticized the SSRC for refusing to register the members of the Arab tribe of Manj County of north Upper Nile state.


SSRC request Justice Ministry to establish courts

Al-Intibaha – the SSRC has requested the Ministry of Justice to set up courts to dispose referendum-related objections. SSRC spokesperson George Makuer said committees had been formed to receive objections after the registration.

Makuer told reporters yesterday that 2,496,000 voters have registered in the South, 95,000 in the North and 40,000 abroad.

According to Al-Akhbar, the SSRC has sent a letter to the Ministry of Justice requesting formation of referendum courts to dispose registration-related objections.

SPLM-DC accuses SPLM and the SSRC of hampering voter registration
Khartoum– The Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Movement – Democratic Change (SPLM-DC) is accusing the SSRC and the SPLM of violating the Referendum Law and attempting to weaken the voter registration process. SPLM-DC’s secretary for youths, Pasquale Otweil, noted that the SSRC has hampered voter registration in the north and south of the country through by engaging young “identifiers and monitors” while focusing also on tribal bias in order to “lay the grounds for rigging in the referendum in the same manner the April 2010 elections were rigged in southern Sudan.”

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