How are we supposed to interpret Derby’s unprovoked and irresponsible commentary, when he calls the anticipated independence of south Sudan as “a disaster for Africa?” So why does this envious neighbour of the Sudan intent to return the country back to war by campaigning against the full implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) which is only finished when the people of the south finally cast their votes at the self determination referendum in January 2011? And what does Deby of Chad plan to do next when south Sudan is finally declared a separate state?
While I asked all the above questions, I already know that Deby and his type can’t delay the inevitable, not even for a second. But I believe that the Chadian people would more than willingly support the new African state of south Sudan, come January 2011 and they would more than likely want to have their mission in Juba.
People of Chad are not strangers to the Sudan, and it is expected of them to be better versed with Sudan’s north-south conflict. In particular those who resided in the All Black suburb of Mayo in the Sudanese capital city of Khartoum are aware of the closeness between its many Chadian inhabitants and those internally displaced Sudanese from the south.
The people of Chad are well aware of the degree of marginalisation to which the non Muslim south Sudanese people have been exposed. It is this that made successive southern liberation movements to hold up arms against Khartoum and it’s this same thing that we would want to save our children from going through again. We will have our own independent state even if it has to pass through the eyes of some power hungry sadistic generals in Ndjamena and beyond.
Some people may be out there to grid axes with south Sudan for reasons only know to them. Yet different countries are entitled to different solutions to their internal problems. In no way can some Arabs, Arabized Africans or any other Islamic bigots for that matter attempt to portray the Sudanese leadership as if they are imbeciles when they thought it wise enough to put the unity of the country in a plebiscites for the south to voluntarily choose either to remain in the unity which was decided for the Sudan by the colonizers or opt to walk out of it. It is a brave decision by brave people taken after 5 decades of civil war and blood-shed. It wasn’t a hurried decision as our friends are putting it.
Why can’t Derby learn a bit from Sheikh Hassan Abdullah al Turabi, the renounced Islamic guru?
“The Southerners have the legacy of injustice since independence. But now there is a 90 percent tendency towards separation, which we will see immediately after the elections, and it is perhaps too late to change that.” Turabi said.
Asked whether he thinks that the South will split with the North when the referendum comes?
“Yes, I think so. I do not think that Sudan will be united, and I wish that it will be a split not by conflict but peacefully.” Turabi answered.
“We have so many intermarriages all over, and we don’t want to cut them apart. Later the mood will change and the whole world will change and get together again and reunite the Sudan.” He added.
Again asked whether it would it be fair to say that it is best if Sudan was split?
“Not only Sudan, but all our other neighbours with frontiers – those are all colonial frontiers. We want to connect and unite to begin common markets and make easier contact with neighbouring countries.” Sheikh al Turabi affirmed.
The obvious essence here is that if a colonial boundary is the cause of disharmony between people, then to re-establish the much need confidence and trust, we will have to let go of those colonial frontiers and make sensible alternatives that can revitalize our trade and interactions in the different aspects of life, better based on mutual respect.
When we fail to create nations based on equal citizenship, and then we have failed. However those who can solve similar problems within their colonial boundaries the way it’s done in the union of (Tanganyika and Zanzibar) Tanzania where the presidency alternates in a complete harmony between the mainland and the island, they can do just that without necessary going the Sudanese path.
However the Tanzanian model is impossible to be adopted in the Sudan as long as the Muslin Arabs are in no any way genuinely ready for an alternating presidency with the non muslin south. Why doesn’t Chad try this recipe and get its southern population and the non Muslims back into power sharing process instead of worrying over south Sudan’s inevitable secession.
“If it isn’t your tail, don’t wag it.” unknown.
Dr. Justin Ambago Ramba, M.B, B.Ch, D.R.H, MD. Secretary General of the United South Sudan Party (USSP). The party that stands for the independence of South Sudan. Can be reached at [email protected] or [email protected]