Home | News    Tuesday 11 May 2010

Sudan formally rejects the Nile Basin Pact

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May 10, 2010 (KHARTOUM) — Sudan has announced today that it will not sign the framework agreement aimed at reallocating shares from the river Nile, a longstanding demand by several up-stream countries.

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Children fish in the river Nile near the capital Khartoum May 04, 2010 (Reuters)

Egypt joined by Sudan has refused any alteration to the pre-existing accords of 1929 & 1959 which gave it veto power over upstream projects.

Some of the Nile Basin countries, which include Ethiopia, Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya and the Democratic Republic of Congo, say past treaties are unfair and they want an equitable water-sharing agreement that would allow for more irrigation and power projects.

The Nile Basin Initiative, the World Bank funded umbrella group of Nile basin countries, has put off signing a water sharing pact over objections from Egypt and Sudan.

The Sudanese Legal Counsel to the initiative of the Nile Basin countries Ahmed Al-Mufti said in a press conference today that "the official position of the Sudanese government is not to sign during the period of the year set by the seven countries of the basin from the 14th of May unless all nine basin states reach solutions to the disputed issues.

Al-Mufti said that Sudan believes that the Nile Basin countries should issue a presidential statement announcing the establishment of the Office of the Nile River Basin while continuing to negotiate in order to arrive at a comprehensive agreement on the remaining points of disagreement.

He further said that the expiration of the signature period for the Convention, does not mean that it has automatically entered into force because it has to be followed by a lengthy and complex process, stressing that this "does not increase or decrease the rights of the Sudan in the Nile basin or the Nile Waters Agreement."

Al-Mufti also ruled out the possibility of an outbreak of war in the Nile Basin over water, stressing that the differences between Egypt and Sudan on the one hand and the rest of the basin countries on the one hand can be overcome.

Last month, Egypt stressed that the Nile water issue is one of national security.

"Egypt’s share of the Nile’s water is a historic right that Egypt has defended throughout its history," Mohammed Allam, minister of water resources and irrigation, told parliament.

"Egypt reserves the right to take whatever course it sees suitable to safeguard its share," he said.

"If the Nile basin countries unilaterally signed the agreement it would be considered the announcement of the Nile Basin Initiative’s death," Allam added.

Many observers in Sudan have questioned the government’s keen interest in siding with Egypt on the matter despite needing more

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  • 11 May 2010 07:09, by jur_likang_a_ likan’g

    The language Cairo and Khartoum is using to secure a lion share of the water of the Nile is barbaric, arrogant and ill placed. The people of the countries in the Nile basin region have a right to life on the waters of the Nile like the Egyptians and the Sudanese especially at this century of climate uncertainties. For Egypt to say she only recognises 1929 and1956 NIle Agreements is an insult to those countries and their people. This statement seeks to portray her supremacy on decisions that is completely out of her borders and her sovereignty. Nothing will doubt that the statement outlines the master-slave, Arab-African sad relationship of the past that saw millions of Africans enslaved, tortured to death by them.

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    • 11 May 2010 07:21, by sheeple

      Believers, take neither the Jews nor the Christians for your friends. (Sura 5:51) Qur’an

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      • 11 May 2010 07:54, by julius mowanga

        Yo, please be relevant...ok!

        Egypt is the GIFT of The Nile,No Nile / No Egypt , is’t clear?!and the rest follows....

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        • 12 May 2010 14:36, by Simon Puok Nyang Tutjiek

          You people lost your sense how can we support Egypt holding water like is for them 95% of the water signed in 1929 and 1959 was unfairs and that was one of the reasons to destroyed Jonglei canal which supposed to drain water from South sudan to north Sudan and Egypt.
          This agreement was signed when all the Eastern Africa countries and the rest were too weak to response to the strong country like Egypt so today we are awake enough to see thing are going with right direction.
          We need water in Jonglei as South sudan dry land, some parts of barh El gazal and some partsof Equotoria and Egypt won’t allow that, if that agreement still there is the threat to the human lives specially in South Sudan and we need to work hands in hand as african and Egypt and North sudan imposed the agreement to the African let’s tackle that.
          And we can not differentiate them, they are all brother and sisters, therefore the agreement is not logical

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    • 11 May 2010 09:40, by sunny

      Dear all,

      the Nile Basin Pact signed in 1929 & 1959 gives Sundan and Egypt, who are on the tail of the Nile, a jurisdiction and veto power over any one who shows unsatisfactory manners among the list of seven countries.

      Sudan may take it easy but Egypt will slaughter who ever will attempt to transgress the past conventions.

      Take care,

      Sunny.

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    • 11 May 2010 19:22, by MJriaksdca

      Who own the Nile or its water? My answer is that any country that has the touch of origin, passage, or end has the right to have a share of the Nile water. These countries are Uganda (origin), Sudan (passage), and Egypt (end). These countries are the ones to negotiate and sign a share deal on the Nile water.

      It is wrong for Egypt and North Sudan to want to stick to olden days agreement of 1929 or 1956 because the upcoming creation of a new country in Sudan will definately require new negotiation on the Nile Water. As soon as Southern Sudan becomes a new country, she will have an immense say on all these invalid agreements.

      I do not see the right to claim the Nile water by countries like Tanzania, Kenya, and Congo. The only way these countries can get involve in Nile water issues is when the countries who claim rights of origin, passage or end start to have disputes that need resolutions. They can step in to help solve such disputes.

      Again I say this view of mine without having gone back to reread my history of the Nile. So, I am open to correction.

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      • 12 May 2010 02:32, by Deng Ateny Lueth

        wrong,wrong, and wrong idiot. i don’t thing you have studied your georgraphy enough. there tributaries that collect water in those 7 mention above countries. victoria is shared on some parts among kenya, Tanzania, and the rest like congo river joined Nile some where.ethiopia got blue nile originated in TANA lake. where do you get the idea of three countries you mentioned to be the owners.

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  • 11 May 2010 08:13, by DASODIKO

    Africans will be stupid to give you Nile water again to kill their own African families in South Sudan and Darfur. Keep on braging until one day find yourself coming creeping on your knees toward Nile Basin countries begging the drinking water.
    My advice to African Nile basin countries is that never allow these Arabs to use our resourses to kill us again. Today they are killing people in South Sudan and Darfur tomorrow they will be moving towards Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania to Arabize them. Arabs believe that all living things on earth GOD created for them; and they have a divine rights to use them.
    WATCH OUT AFRICAN, if you take my advice seriously you will preserve the coming generation or else!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • 11 May 2010 08:48, by murlescrewed

    I think Sudan made a reasoned decision in rejecting any renegotiation of the Nile Basin treaty. It would invite anarchy if past treaties are dismantled. What will convince Egypt and Sudan is the increasing demand from other countries. There is nothing that can prevent Tanzania or Kenya from drawing more water than they are allocated. Egypt cannot risk a war or conflict with all countries upstream.

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    • 11 May 2010 09:28, by DASODIKO

      Jalabi Murlescrewed keep on dreaming until you find yourself with your masters in North drinking your sweats to survive. Haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa, the train of change in Africa started rolling.

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      • 11 May 2010 09:39, by Deng Thiak Adut

        There is no substance in law for allowing Egypt to keep using waters she does not have right to. Legally, other countries shouldnt beg Egypt nor Sudan to rectify the previous illegal agreements. They are not binding and if you ask anyone with international law degree, he will affirm my position.Other countries can go ahead with their projects for economic and utilities reasons. Drinking water and agriculture usages are adequate claims in this regard. The situation might be different now, but these treaties will be affected by the independece of South Sudan. We need irrigation and drinking water. Our activites will lawful activities. So Nile Basin should not even invite Epypt into their discussions....because they have paramount rights to use water equitably....

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      • 11 May 2010 09:53, by sunny

        Dear all

        The Nile water is all our concern. lets support our Thinktanks to post controversial over the amendment of the treaty. Remember when nile water is used for agriculture by the forementioned countries near to Lake victoria, the Nile will sink or even dry up. On that day you will not dream of Kenana sugar any longer.

        SUNNY.

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        • 11 May 2010 11:00, by Gatloth Gai

          Nile water is God give to every ones living in the country acrossed by the Nile,hence there must be no negaciation.

          Some country take this creature as thier own,but when cercumatency like drying up of the water occured who can say no to God.

          Politically,people with the hight authority of Nile water,must be Ugandans becuase they are possessing the source of the Nile water(L. Victoria)but when they sympathising with thier fellow Africans then why are you be crazy like that?

          The use of Nile water must be that claimed those mentoined counties.
          So be very co-operative.

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      • 11 May 2010 10:49, by abushama

        Yes jalaba nock your heads alone and begin to sign your new agreement with Khartoum oh Egypt for we Southerners need to sign a new agreement with the rest of the countries regarding this issue of Nile Basin.
        But be aware that the crying which has began form Egypt will soon start in Khartoum too because of this same issue of water.

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  • 11 May 2010 20:35, by DASODIKO

    Haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa enjoy this Film not that of Adel Imam but of Odenga here you gooooooooooooooo

    Nile treaties are malicious and must be renegotiated
    By JOHN B. OSORO
    Posted Tuesday, May 11 2010 at 18:02
    TANZANIA PLANS TO BUILD a 170-kilometre water pipeline from Lake Victoria to benefit an estimated 4,000 people in its arid northwestern region.
    Similarly, Kenyan policymakers often toy with the idea of pumping massive amounts of water from the lake to supply populations in vast water-deficit areas.
    Similar sentiments regarding the use of the waters are increasingly gaining currency among upstream countries.
    These plans remain just dreams, thanks to an abusive agreement drawn during the colonial days to dispossess Africans of their Nile heritage.
    There is a 1929 agreement between Egypt and Britain granting Cairo the lion’s share of the Nile water resource. This treaty shamelessly forbids Ethiopia, which generates over 85 per cent of the total Nile water, from irrigating farms.
    The agreement empowers Egypt to command Ethiopia (a sovereign state) on the utilisation of the Blue Nile water within its borders.
    DESPITE ATTEMPTS BY SEVEN UPSTREAM nations to convince Egypt to renegotiate this bizarre agreement, Cairo continues to ignore them while barring any large-scale upstream irrigation or power generation projects on the Nile Basin.
    Instead, Egypt persists on squandering the spoils of the Nile through the creation of a new town called Nubia from scratch (1987) fed by canals drawing excessive amounts of water from the river.
    Construction of the Tanzanian water pipeline is a way of expressing the determination of the seven riparian nations — Kenya, Uganda, Eritrea, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, and Ethiopia — to counter this historical injustice.
    Faced with an estimated population of over 160 million, which is likely to double in 25 years, countries on the Nile Basin are under pressure to access this water.
    Unless Egypt co-operates, lack of an agreeable agreement may spark military action or Northern Sudan and Egypt will eventually contend with any remaining volume of water after upstream states have extracted enough quantities to satisfy their water and energy needs.
    Threats from the north that their inflated share of the Nile’s water is a historic right, and that Egypt reserves the right to take whatever action it deems necessary to safeguard that right, is no longer practical.
    Egypt is certainly aware that most riparian nations resent this treaty. Besides, the collaboration between the World Bank and Egypt to deny upstream countries the external funding required to construct multipurpose dams on the Nile has also fanned this resentment.
    To put it simply, the World Bank has continuously displayed its reluctance to provide infrastructure development funds to riparian states, which want to harness the Nile waters unless Egypt endorses the projects.
    Through this, Western donors are playing the enforcers’ role of the 1929 and 1959 Nile Treaties crafted purposely to impoverish the people of the Nile Basin.
    The ministries of Foreign Affairs in the seven African countries stand accused of naïvetè and utter incompetence for accepting Western donors such as Cida to lead them into engaging Egypt and Sudan in meaningless diplomacy.
    The ministries should have refused to recognize the treaty due to its oppressive and discriminative intentions. This agreement is a racist colonial relic, premeditated to underplay the needs and interests of Africans.
    Egypt and Sudan have persistently stalled efforts to renegotiate both the 1929 and 1959 treaties. This unfriendly act has attracted the attention of politicians in Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania who are questioning the legitimacy of this colonial instrument of oppression.
    UGANDA MPS SUGGEST THAT EGYPT pay compensation for denying Kampala access to a readily available local resource.
    Intriguingly, while Cairo denies Ugandans and others the use of the Nile, Egyptians exploit it fully for generating electricity and irrigating crops, thus enabling this desert nation to industrialise at the expense of upstream states.
    Furthermore, the treaty grants Cairo a right to inspect the entire 6,400 kilometre of the Nile, including its estuaries and Lake Victoria, to ensure no major water-related project is underway. This is an affront to the sovereignty of the riparian states.
    These countries are therefore justified to renounce or ignore the Nile treaty as a nuisance in the conduct of their international relations.
    Mr Osoro is a political analyst and media consultant (osorojb@yahoo.co.nz)

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    • 11 May 2010 23:50, by Amokdu

      Nile Basin countries have full rights to correct old agreements Egypt and Sudan need it or not. Bravo Basin Nile countries go a head and stop who ever want to take your water unjsut ways.

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