Win-Win Negotiation is Essential for Abyei Protocol

By Daniel Abushery Daniel (USA)

“I cannot teach you violence, as I do not myself believe in it. I can only teach you not to bow your heads before any one even at the cost of your life”. Mahatma Gandhi

October 31, 2010 (SSNA) — Without any doubt, South Sudan is now heading towards the end of a long tunnel, which its independence from Khartoum elites, just waiting for January 9th, 2011, and the southerners will excise their ultimate right of self determination in a referendum, don’t make any mistake, we are dealing with people who don’t value life, don’t keeps, and honored their promises, be alert, till the mission was accomplished. Therefore, the involvement of international observers was a wise and brilliant idea. Nevertheless, despite the cheap and shameful attempt of Egyptian government, trying to lour and   seduce our leaders to accept the postponement of this historical event, it was just one of many tactics from Khartoum regime, but the Egyptian acknowledged that; world is watching them. Therefore, they changed the plan they intended to approach our leaders with. Egypt wants transparency between south and north, just to assure that; war will not erupt again, the Egyptian delegation stressed. But, we said to pharaoh, nice trial, but over rule.

The matter of fact is that; the purpose of negotiation is to resolve the situations where; what you want conflicted with what someone else wants. The aim of win-win negotiation is to find a solution that is acceptable to both parties, and leaves all involved with feeling that; they’ve won – in some way – once the negotiation or deal has finished. Remember, we don’t want Abyei to become another Kashmir of Africa.

However, for SPLM to resolve its differences with al-Bashir party (NCP), and put an end of Abyei epidemic peacefully, we must make sure that; we prepare thoroughly, and follow win- win negotiation technique adequately:

Goals: what do we want to get out of the negotiation?, and what do we think the Khartoum wants?

Trades: What do the SPLM and its partner NCP have that both can trade? What do they all want? What are SPLM and NCP comfortable giving away?

Alternatives: if the two parties don’t reach agreement what alternatives do they have? Are these good or bad? How much does it matter if they do not reach agreement? Does failure to reach an agreement cut them out of any future opportunities? And what alternatives might NCP or SPLM have?

Relationships: what is the history of the relationship? Could or should this history impact the negotiation? Will there be any hidden issues that may influence the negotiation? How will the two parties handle these?

The consequences: what are the consequences for SPLM of winning or losing this negotiation? What are the consequences for NCP?

Power: who has what power in the relationship? Who controls resources? Who stands to lose the most if agreement isn’t reached?

Possible solutions: based on all of the considerations, what possible compromises might there be?

Evidently, many observers stated that SPLA/M cannot deal with the consequences and controversy   of the secession  of  South Sudan  in isolation of the other Southerners  political parties,  and civic organizations, south – south  reconciliatory   summit actually became hands on, and their obligations and duties to help is sine que.

Thus far, our   intention here is; to follow the right procedure, and make sure that; referendum was exercised in free, fair, and healthy environment, to avoid any emotional behavior, or hostile situation that may jeopardize the whole process, so, it should be conducted professionally, to meets the international standard.

In –conclusion, we must honor the fallen heroes, and myatres who lost their precious lives to liberate Ngok Dinka in particular, and south Sudanese people in general from York of northern elites, especially, those who were buried in Abyei area, as a reminder to the coming   generation and the whole world that; at last, we make it to the shore, again, if you can’t make it to the poll, please don’t registered your name.

Let’s hope for the best, and prepare for the worse. Long live South Sudan nation.


The author is a criminologist, and human rights activist, can be reached at [email protected] or [email protected]  

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