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AU criticizes ICC ruling on Bashir genocide charges

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February 4, 2010 (KHARTOUM) – The African Union (AU) today issued a statement criticizing the ruling of the appeal chamber at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in which it decided that the Pre-Trial chamber committed a legal error in excluding the genocide charges from the arrest warrant against Sudanese president Omer Hassan Al-Bashir.

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African Union Commission chairman Jean Ping (Getty Images)

The Bashir case is now back to the Pre-Trial chamber judges to review the and make a new finding on the genocide counts consistent with the interpretation of the evidentiary standard set forth by the appeal chamber.

Many legal experts believe that the ruling means that there is a big possibility that the genocide charges may ultimately be added.

Sudan slammed the ICC decision calling it an infringement on its sovereignty. The Sudanese embassy in Addis Ababa, where the AU is based, issued condemnation statement and its emissary handed it to the AU commission chairman Jean Ping.

Ping, who is one of the fiercest critics of the court, said during the AU summit that the ICC is targeting African states.

“We are not for a justice with two speeds, a double standard justice one for the poor, one for the rich,” he said.

The AU said in the statement released today that the decision “comes at a particular time in the history of the Sudan.

“Over the coming months, the Sudan will be witnessing momentous events, in particular the holding of national elections, in April 2010, and the holding of a referendum on self?determination for Southern Sudan, scheduled for January 2011. For the African continent, the successful completion of these processes and, more generally, the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) are of utmost importance”.

The release made reference to the AU panel on Darfur chaired by Thabo Mbeki which came out with a roadmap to harmonize peace, justice and accountability. It had recommended the establishment of a hybrid court to try Darfur war crime suspects after recognizing flaws in the Sudanese handling of the prosecutions.

However, Sudanese officials including Bashir and pro-government groups made remarks expressing reservation on the proposal and to date nothing has emerged on the practical steps taken to implement the proposal.

Many critics and rebel groups accuse the AU and Mbeki of seeking to protect the Sudanese head of state from prosecution. Prior to completion of Mbeki’s report, the AU decided that none of its state will cooperate in apprehending Bashir irrespective of their legal obligations under the Rome Statute.

In a report released less than two weeks ago, Human Rights Watch pilloried the AU for supporting the embattled Sudanese leader, arguing that such a move was a blow to the entire institution’s credibility.

"The AU, led by some of the continent’s worst autocrats, began accusing the court of unfairly targeting Africans. In reality, these leaders were cynically trying to protect one of their own," it said.

But the pan-African organization defended its stance with regard to the indictment.

“The African Union has always emphasized its commitment to justice and its total rejection of impunity, in line with the relevant provisions of its Constitutive Act. At the same time, the AU reiterates that the search for justice should be pursued in a manner not detrimental to the search for peace. The latest decision by the ICC runs in the opposite direction”.

Furthermore, the AU chided the UN Security Council (UNSC) for not heeding to its request that the warrant be deferred under Article 16 of the Rome Statute.

“The African Union observes with concern that the UN Security Council has, to date, not given due consideration to this request, in spite of the AU’s repeated appeals and the serious risks and dangers associated with the pursuit of the ICC process in the context of the ongoing search for peace and reconciliation in the Sudan, as well as for stability in the region”.

It is highly unlikely that the UNSC will take any steps in that direction. The African members of the ICC will propose an amendment to the Rome Statute granting the UN General Assembly the power to defer cases if the UNSC does not act within a specific timeframe.

(ST)

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  • 5 February 2010 06:25, by Gatjang

    AU is a mess and they have to stay way from Sudanese business. Who the heck were they during the South-North long war. And now they are supporting the world big criminal and they are against South Independence.

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    • 5 February 2010 06:35, by Nuerfudinka

      AU are a selection of poor minding people each one want to get money from Al Baher,because some AU members came a long from a poor family.they all again south sudan independence.thanks.

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    • 5 February 2010 08:33, by K Bambo

      What do you expect from people like Jean Ping, who rais their family and live their life by handouts from dictators and killer leaders.

      He had to make such remarks so that he gets a better handout from Bashir when he next visit Sudan.

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  • 5 February 2010 06:30, by Wal P Muoranyar Biet

    Union of corrupted and dictators, whether you like it or not, your member will follow Charles Taylor soon. If you were a credible union, African crisis would have not been determine by foreigners. Where were AU when 300,000. Darfuris were slaughtered?
    You melato Jean Ping,your cousin melato Bashir will face justice soon.

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    • 5 February 2010 07:12, by Young Nation

      I totally agree with Muoranyar. The United Nations, European States, The United States and other organized global institutions have no power of intervening in African affairs had African leaders adopted a none damaging path based on corruption, warfare and lack of development since day one of de-colonization in the 50s and 60s.

      The bottom line is that President Bashir must practically rather than theoretically be fully apprehended and locked up on genocide charges not just in Darfur but also in Southern Sudan, Nuba Mountains and in Funj areas. African dictatorial and autocratic leaders should really not be committing war crimes against the very people they rule and thefore complain when their evil deeds come back to huant them. Nobody is above the law. There is no reason why Sudan’s president could not face law when murderous like Charles Tylar and master minders of Rwandan genocide are behind bars. Omar Bashir must face justice, the very justice he denied others in the Sudan since he came to power in 1989.

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      • 5 February 2010 07:31, by Padiet Gagag

        Where was AU when Darfure were killed like wild animals?

        AU doesn,t judge the truth they depend on money,stay away from this problem.
        because you around since it started itself your eyes were blinded by money of Arab leage,The ICC will solve this problem because you are nuptism.

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  • 5 February 2010 07:19, by Freedom Fighter

    Is the AU proving that black man isn’t full, but only half of a human creature.!! OH my god. Why supporting a killer, who has killed millions and hundreds people of its own ( AU ). Shame on africans

    freedom fighter

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  • 5 February 2010 07:53, by Lual Chol Kuir

    what stupid union is that?, how long re they gonna defend criminals?, if I’m not wrong I dnt really see the different between ping nd Bashir becox to back up a criminals, you re criminal too.
    Now the AU stand for stupid african union for Dictators and corruption.
    We all believe that in African union states there’re good leaders who’re really concern about injustice in Africa and they can’t do anything because this Organization is now fuck up but this motherfucker undercover Arab like Ping and ban ki-moon.

    By any means necessary this stupid coward will face justice.

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    • 5 February 2010 08:22, by Master

      What dont you traitors and failures mind your own business. This is between North Sudan & Darfur. Worry about you impotent corrupt GOSS and the 4.3 million starving in you population that are suffering. Worry about you pity tribal clash’s over COWs !!

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  • 5 February 2010 08:20, by Majang

    guys Jean Ping or pig is an Arab I can recognise him.look at him closselly he doesn`t have an African image no wander he look smart in a Suit Bashir has been supyling him with money.black continent of black minded corrup leader eating in a soup of innocent blood can they tell me those 300000 Durforian died on earthquek or on Bashir`s hands?sometimes I feel like I wasn`t born from Africa just becouse African leaders don`t surport Justics and Human right.

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    • 5 February 2010 08:25, by Master

      Do you even read what your saying you racist primitive ape.
      Shows how little your minds are !!

      DO YOU HAVE PROOF 300 000 DARFURIES DIE. DONT TELL THEY SAID SO. WHEN YOU ASK THEM, THEY SAY SOMEONE ELSE TOLD US.

      SHOW ME PROOF OTHERWISE SHUT THE HELL UP YOU TRAITORS. YOU PEOPLE ARE RACISTS LOOK AT WHAT YOUR DOING TO EACH OTHER FIRST BEFORE POINTING THE FINGER

      IGNORANT MORANS

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      • 5 February 2010 13:23, by Sudani Logik

        Master

        You’re a hypocritical retard!

        As for the rest of you criticizing the AU without really understanding their stance, I urge you to analyze info before reflecting stupidity via your comments.

        1) The AU is not asking for Bashir to be declared innocent but rather that the ICC is biased and non neutral in its interventions on African affairs. A US soldier could not even be touched by this ICC let alone a senior member of its government. Don’t tell me the US has a great justice system because evidence proves otherwise hence why Blacks in the US are four times more likely to receive harsher sentence then their fellow Whites for the same crimes, not to mention that African Americans are over represented in US jails as well as the inhumane conditions of detainees in Guantanamo, being held without trial for years is not justice.

        2) The AU, in its recommendations had asked Sudan to consider setting up Hybrid courts to asses Darfur crimes.

        3) The AU is only asking for the warrant to be deferred rather than cancelled for the purpose of achieving the CPA and because they know crimes have been committed in Darfur but this should be tackled by the Sudanese themselves.

        4) The Darfur crisis has been grossly exaggerated as evidence contradicts much of the nonsense shouted out by groups such as the Save Darfur Coalition. There has been more deaths in the South than Darfur during 2009, so I urge the above (speak first and think later) commentators to look at the facts before making noise.

        No one in the SPLM leadership will ever accept or confirm that what happened in Darfur is greater than the crimes committed against southerners during the struggle but yet it has always been labeled as a civil war so why on earth would they label Darfur any different. Most of the Mujahideen who caused unbelievable suffering of southerners in Equatoria during the rain of "Amir al Mujahideen" Khalil Ibrahim the then Governor of Bahr Al Jabel were recruited from Darfur and Kurdofan and not from the far north. Now these very same people cry foul because they have not been rewarded adequately for their contribution in the South/North war.

        Lastly, please try to use intellect to counter my points rather than insults which makes you look more childish than Master and his likes. The ICC is a joke of an organization.

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        • 5 February 2010 14:21, by AAMA

          Thanks for trying to establish a sensible debate in the middle of this emotional and hateful forum.

          The facts are that Sudan is not a country that Africa hates and Sudan is a mini Africa model, so, what happens in Sudan raises a flag for the whole continent.

          So, if today the ICC was successful in Sudan, tomorrow you will see much of the African leaders in question and the court will only target Africa.

          There is a problem in Darfur as there was a problem in the south before between the government and rebels and mistakes are from both sides, just as in the south problem.

          What really bothers me is what people expect from Africa to do against Sudan as a goverment and a nation. There is a fundamental difference between the north(all Sudan excluding the southern part)/south problem and the north relationship with the rest of Africa. An ordinary northerner will tell you I am an Arab but also will tell you that my roots are from Africa. Also throughout the history of independent Sudan since 1956, Sudan was very supportive to all African causes and never sided against Africa and will never ever do so. The problem is that due to the fight between north and south, and because Sudan labels its self as an arab country, southerners tend to think that they are African and northerners are not (or maybe less African or not African enough) and therefore wonder why Africans support the Sudanese government.

          Beside that, an independent south will erupt and fuel separatist groups all over the continent (many minorities in Africa think they are oppressed like the southerners and they have the right to secede). Many African countries are formed in colonial times and the result is that a nation or a tribe of people can be split into several countries while several tribes of unequal numbers can be put tighter to form a country.

          The last thing is that countries in Africa used to sympathies with the south cause because of 2 reasons:

          1. South had a just cause and used a unionist approach.
          2. The government of Sudan didn’t counter the SPLM publicity effectively.

          However, every thing is changed now, the south gained a lot of rights (much better than most of the people of the north), so, south will get less sympathy from Africa as they no longer suffer like before (off course with the exception of countries like Kenya and Uganda who look forward for exploiting the new and very rich resources in the south). It’s also worth mentioning that the central government is working very hard and is giving a lot of attention towards Africa and is winning back Africa’s support very rapidly after the SPLM had bad mouthed its reputation for years.

          Peace to all peace loving people.

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      • 5 February 2010 13:44, by okucu pa lotinokwan

        Au members should not be buyers,ICC issue on the criminal president Omer is the truth way on Darfur peace agreement,Mr ping or Pig,as his structure look like is getting some beriberi from Omer Bashir,if Im not lieing asked the former foreign minister General Larazous Simboya,what NCP party did to him when he was mediating for 21 years civil war Between North and South Sudanese,if General Simboya should be person who love money,I believe South -North conflict would have been still continuing up to now.Any mediator who is standing by the side of Omer Bashir has been bought. Why the Kenyan former President Daniel Arabmoi who took money from Arabs in the name of south- north mediator what has he done?.Only he improve his Bank account.Ashame on those who want follow the same rout.

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        • 5 February 2010 14:23, by sheeple

          What is it you don’t understand? Bashir robs the oil from the south, sells it to the chinese and shares the booty with corrupt African Union officials who happen to be corrupt murderous head of states. It’s like robbing a bank and then sharing the booty with the the Judge, the Police and the politicians. Very Very simple this is how Africa operates, you don’t need to be a scientist to figure this out!

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          • 5 February 2010 14:36, by sheeple

            ...And if the people get noisy just spray them with bullets and Ping Jean or what ever will take care of the rest...... nice job hah

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            • 5 February 2010 15:02, by sheeple

              John 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

              •• The "thief" in this verse is generally understood to refer to the devil. Never lose sight of the fact that the devil has an unending desire to steal, kill, and destroy anything he can in your life.

              • Jesus called him a “murderer” (John 8:44).

              • You cannot make a truce with the devil. He is and will always be, 24 hours a day, “your enemy the devil” (1 Peter 5:8).

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              • 5 February 2010 15:57, by sheeple

                Don’t worry Bashir, big brother Ping has a secret weapon

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      • 5 February 2010 23:56, by Lual Chol Kuir

        heyy Master or Dog

        You motherfucker Master or whatever you called yourself, how can you denies Bashir that he hasn’t commits genocide in Df, do you want Bashir to rape and killed your mother is that how you gonna know that he commits it?.
        Shame on you motherfucker and I feel sorrow for you, and please you Asshole you better go and see Physicologizt dump Asshole to get some counselling.

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      • 6 February 2010 01:27, by Majang

        Master

        you stupid baboon evile minded are you trying to cover your crimes commited by your husband Bashir!
        or you think the durforian are not Human to be consider by human right?listen to me here,"the uncondusive situation paced by south and west sudan shall be one day be paced by Arab people in the North if they don`t changed their mentality against African Tribe.you call me race have you forgot what your people did to us southerners is it not being Race against African?anyways I don`t blame you you `re a man withuot any nice qualities.

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  • 5 February 2010 18:53, by babadit

    BRAVO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!BRAVO Mr.MORINO OCHOMPUS

    AU must stay out of sudan, Ping is from south Korea that is why he talk like Ban-ki moon.
    Al Bashir and others who are involves in Darfur case must answer for what they have done against the people of darfur.
    B

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    • 6 February 2010 05:55, by jur_likang_a_ likan’g

      It is erroneous to claim AU criticizes the ruling on Bashir genocide charges. AU is not mullato Mr Jean Ping. Let justice be separated from politics. Bashir should face justice for his deeds. There are many Bashir substitutes in Sudan. The African leaders who support Bashir to dodge Justice have their cases to answer to their citizens.

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  • 7 February 2010 10:12, by kumii

    Let Africans Unit and the World Take Concrete Measures against Unlawful Institutional Acts

    Let African elites, business men, farmers, students, elders all of us with love for African people, tradition, religion, culture and all resources unit for emancipation from local colonialists and end up brutal governors’ rule. Let us be committed for social justices, rule of law unit and work together for African citizens’ rights –let us start by producing a one T – shirt or hat with the scripts, “rule of law and social justice in Africa”. It helps us think and work together, share both the vision for social justices and friendship as well as join our heart and hand against African pains, poverty, humiliations, genocide and ethnic clearance generated from the group in power. We observe excessive reluctant and less emphases by developed nations and international community to end or stop the criminal acts of “African leaders” as they were doing against apartheid which was unlawful as many current African governments. Let us unit to call international communities to work with us and take tangible measures against dictators and ensure freedom for African people. Let us jointly work to persuade world leaders and international agencies change their mind to think “support for food and infrastructure is enough” for Africans. Let they not send their money to us through African leaders who finance own institutions, power and facilities that perpetuate our enslavement. Let the world stand and think that we are human being like them, but deprived of freedom, snatched our rights by the governments with which they make agreement, to whom they give money for our education, health and development.
    What always shocking me is that international institutions send money for us through those who are using that money against us, who are already engaged in impoverishing us, who are working to eliminate us, who already enslaved us. Financial and technical supports strengthen such governments and build their capacities to practice more crime, widen their illegal acts, create and finance many illegal institutions against humanity and the rule of laws. They cover their shortage of money and facilities, help them to train additional man power who violate human rights and keep them in power, to pay incentives for those acting against the law, to create employment opportunity, education, pay house allowance and per diem for those who are violating human rights on the other hand and weakening us from time to time on the other. Those who put themselves in power and call themselves a government don’t face any check and control due to lack of capacities of local people and reluctance of international community. They use such gaps and decide, act as they like on all aspects of human life at the expenses of Africans survival.
    Let all African youths, adults and the elderly( affected in all sectors by those who call themselves a government, who appoint themselves as a leader, who establish economic, political and cultural institutions that safeguard their power and security; ensure their vision eternality and supremacy over citizen) work together against violation of law and “end up ruling for ever” by those who control power throughout their life and transfer the political and economic power of the citizens to their descendents, children or groups/affiliates. Let us have our own priority and slogan every year and start by saying “End up Ruling Forever” for this year. Let us assist each other work together, share information and experiences, safe guard each other like that of our opponents, “Africa leaders” who aggressively work not to miss each other from power, who collaborate to see each other as the representatives of their country and head of state on African Union meetings forever. They developed a kind of emotional attachment, feel sympathetic to one another and help for one another when any one of them is won in election or face genocide charge. They seriously think either facing genocide charge or lose of power by one of them risk the other as the punishment of Albahsir by genocide and war crime may extend fears to its neighbors.
    All Africans, we have tasted the sour life due to uncontrolled and excessive violation of law and injustices practiced against our survival, destiny and hope by the eternal rulers in our respective countries. We faced this starting from birth, with our poor father and poor mother while growing as a child; with our children and partner when we are adults and care for new generation. We never see the progress towards its end; rather regress when it is worsening. We all Africans are living the same life though we are not seeing each other; speaking the same language though we are not listening to one another. Our life in Ethiopia, especially for Oromos is dark always. Africans are losing African tradition, culture developed by the Oromo people for generation. It is time to take action and protect those whose survival is getting threatened like that of Oromos. TPLF never believes Oromos as human beings that have rights and equal with others under the rule of law. Our parents were land less tenant. We started to serve landlords at 13 with barefoot and dilapidated clothes. We took grains and money to the land lords. We know Ethiopian governments are ruining Oromo children by violating the rights of parents
    We are worrying that the position of our children will continue like that of ours and our father so far as one group of people (TPLF) decides on the fate, power and resources of Oromos. This is what Oromo fathers and mothers inherited to their children. Power and decision making are decisive in determining the means and the end of ensuring social justices which we are deprived of. This is why I want to bring our parents, our existing life and our children situation to the attention of African brothers and sisters.
    From 1900 to 1970/80 our world has passed a lot of advancement towards human rights, liberty and social justices by abolishing one man rules (kings and dictators), absolute power of groups of people, abolishing slavery, making many countries free from colonialism. But recently dictatorship, absolute power, one party systems are evolving, reviving, developing, expanding in Africa( Meles promised to work for democracy when he came to power to get time, stabilize the people, get the support of democratic governments of western countries) and getting more and more deepening by abusing civilization, law, technology and media. Now which systems of ruling Meles and his TPLF are demonstrating and teaching African leaders? Answering this question by researchers, human right activists and western powers are imperative to decide African fate towards democracy. African leaders are sharing experience among themselves on how to rule their people for ever. They support each other when their powers are threatens by citizens and the rule of law. They consult each other to see and get one another on power everlastingly. I feel fear this might cross seas to western democratic countries unless it is gradually eliminated in Africa. African leaders know if true democracy is exercised in one country, it is a threat for the other one. They have to help each other to keep one another on power. Developed countries have taken measures to abolish slavery and slave trade, colonialists as well as apartheid of South Africa. But, they don’t have courage and commitment like that of the past to work towards emancipation of millions of people from decisions and actions of ingenious dictators.
    They have been never taking serious measures on brutal African leaders who are the sole source of poverty, inequality, injustices and absolute power. We rather see the “cycle of empowerment and disempowerment”. The western countries are consistently empowering the people in developing countries while African leaders are constantly disempowering their people. This cycle continuous till it is broken through transferring political and economic power to citizens so that the people empower themselves and the empowerment of the western for African becomes sustainable.
    TPLF led Ethiopian government works day and night by media, by the name of development, democracy and the rule of law to change all people for itself (disempowering others) and not for others (empowerment). It works hard to create the state of mind that believes the right organization is only TPLF and the right leader is Meles and other parties are anti democracy and the duties of citizens is to be ruled and approve the power of TPLF through nominal election every four years . Living without being submissive and without praying to Meles is impossible and this is extremely frustrating. The power and resources are entering in the hands of TPLF and groups surrounding it while who think and behave differently are disempowered from time to time. Thinking and actions are encouraged towards taking Meles as GOD and TPLF as angels and superior in thinking and actions. Incentives are given and thinking like TPLF are encouraged and rewarded get education opportunity, employment and promotion. The groups, parties or individuals who think differently are discouraged starting from loss of opportunities for education, employment to facing sever punishment. We are practicing not only poverty and humiliation, but “Social, Economic, Cultural and Psychological Death”, not recognized as genocide (it has to be recognized) by others; but by far more suffering and painful than physical death as it is degrading and humiliating one generation after the other. When I see all severely life in Ethiopia as a tenant with my parent and the current government abusing the intellectual power, economic and humanitarian support of the west to own resources and power, I am asking my self, why we get a child? Why do we give birth for slave child? Why we send them to school?
    American and many western countries are seeing new leaders emerging from time to time. But in African countries including Ethiopia, the head of the state and government are the same all ways for long time; when Americans were led by the 3 presidents, Meles is the head of state when Clinton was president, when Bush was president and still when Obama is a president). When do you think ruling (TPLF) and being ruled (the citizen) for ever ends in Ethiopia? Let the leaders born from democracy , grown it, worked and lived for social justice and equality discuss, work seriously and show their concrete commitment to end one man and one party rule and manipulation and abuse of citizens and hence the life of many people will be absolutely changed.
    In its recent meeting African Union represented by those who call themselves government and who are not appointed by the people participated taken technology and communication a priority for African at present or point of discussion? If really true elected leaders were there or if the leaders consulted the people and vast majority what would be the priority when almost all Africans are affected by the brutal local colonialists, uncontrolled power and decision of groups that put themselves on power, appointed themselves a government, who are hostile to their own people, who don’t know people and people don’t know them; who knows rule of laws and democracy on paper and who changes the fundamental meaning of democracy, rule of law, good governance, human rights, international and national laws for their own political and economic power, who abuses all sorts of life like illiteracy, resources, enlightenment, international cooperation, human rights; religion and tradition. All controls of power, abuses every thing, changing and diverting the meaning of concepts are for the sole of keeping self on political and economic power for ever, taking back African mentality to servitude, creating the mass economic, technological and political dependency through disempowering all citizens in all aspects.
    What would be the priority? What are the meanings of technology and communication, who will better benefited from them? How technology and communication have been used to violate human rights, for genocide, for flourishing and long life of the dictators? Is technology not used for dictators, security, for their propaganda, easily controlling those who fight for social justices and democracy; is not used for internal conflict, civil war, to keep African dictators in power, manipulate laws; has not technology used to suppress the mass voices, strengthen and expanded the influences of brutal leaders, has not they strengthened hostility.
    What was their intention when raising “technology and communication” is it to make them under the control of the majorities? Is to make access for all? Is to avoid its control by few individuals or groups? How this will be monitored that technology is used and backing the rule of law, democracy, social justices, alleviation of poverty, emancipation of African citizens from local colonialists, promoting human rights; what are the tools to control the technology and communications are not abused and not used for violation of human rights and injustices; served the majorities and accessed and controlled equally. Concepts of the slogan have to be changed and this should be worked and pressured by developed countries, phylantrnoics organizations, agencies, humanitarian organization through out the world to work on “Technology and Communication for the Rule of Law and Social Justices”.
    Kumii Tumi

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