Home | News    Monday 15 October 2012

South Sudan pleads for public support on cooperation deal with Sudan

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October 14, 2012 (JUBA) - Leading officials from South Sudan’s governing Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) have admitted compelling conditions behind the signing of the cooperation agreement with the government of neigbouring Sudan and pleaded for public support in the face of sustained criticisms.

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Sudan’s chief negotiator Idris Mohamed Abdel Gadir (L) shakes hands with South Sudan’s chief negotiator Pagan Amum after signing the cooperation agreement on 27 September 2012 (Reuters)

Most criticism has focused on the inclusion of Mile 14 in the border buffer zone. The Governor of Northern Bahr el Ghazal and other officials and civilians from the state say that the area is not in dispute and should never have been included in the demilitrosed area 10 kilometre either side of a nominal border proposed by the Arican Union mediation.

SPLM officials, including South Sudan’s chief negotiator Pagan Amum have said that those who have criticise the deal do not understand it as the inclusion of Mile 14 in the buffer zone will have no bearing border demarcation, the two sides and the AU and UN Security Council have agreed.

On Monday South Sudan President Salva Kiir is expected to appear before parliament to persuade lawmakers to vote through the deal to allow its implementation to begin.

Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation, Paul Mayom Akec, told an event predominantly members of the civil right activists on Saturday that the deal was needed for the country’s flagging economy and restore its reputation in the region.

Akec, who was a member of negotiating team in Addis Ababa said: “We must be realistic to ourselves. We all know the condition we are in. We have been denied loans since April. We have been made unpopular in the region because of shutting down oil production.”

South Sudan stopped oil production at the beginning of the year in a transit fee dispute with Khartoum. The resumption of oil production was contingent on border and security deals also being reached.

Akec told audience that the United States was to blame for some of the "confusion" over the border between Sudan and South Sudan.

The Americans "were the ones who went to Western Bahr el Ghazal and say there are minerals in Hufra Nahas and Kafia Kinji and they announced existence." This he said meant that the Sudanese government - then led by President Ibrahim Aboud - to annex the area to north.

Akec said the same had occured in Heglig/Panthou after oil was discovered in the area, during President Jafa’ar Nimeiri’s rule.

"When it was announced president Nimery came out and said the oil was discovered somewhere few kilometers south of Khartoum to fool the world. He actually decided to give western Upper Nile new name because of oil. He named it Unity. So you see clearly where the problem came”, he explained.

The two sides fought a border war over Heglig in April this year. The conflict led to the UN Security Council to pass Resolution 2046 under Chapter VII of its Charter demanding both sides come to agreement on all outstanding issues pertaining to South Sudan’s independence last year.

The senior official pleaded the public, asking them to avoid being negative about the agreement, asserting that there were compelling conditions behind signing of the deal.

Gabriel Changson Chang, Minister of Wildlife and Tourism blasted critics of the deal, arguing that the same people would have gone to the street to protest if there was no agreement.

“We have to be honest with ourselves when approaching issues of national concerns as such. There was nothing the negotiating team did not do to protect the interest of our country. We actually have done what anyone among you with the national interest at heart would have done. If we did not sign this agreement, I am sure the same people criticizing now would have gone on the street to protest in order to cause havoc and instability”,said minister Chang.

Chang tried to dismiss fears and increasingly growing public criticisms over the buffer zones and four freedoms agreement. The "four freedoms" agreement was initially in March 2012 creating a framework allowing citizens of both states to enjoy freedom of residence, freedom of movement, freedom to undertake economic activity and freedom to acquire and dispose property.

The minister argued that the deals were transitional arrangements which provide ways to establish a joint security committee that would "control the security situation on both sides of the border in the framework of respecting the national sovereignty of the two countries."

In its Resolution 2046 the Security Council said "that the center line of the (Safe Demilitarised Border Zone) SDBZ in no way prejudices the current or future legal status of the border, ongoing negotiations on the disputed and claimed areas, and demarcation of the border."

“It is true we see things differently. There are those who see security arrangements from different perspectives but we at the negotiating team also see it differently. We see it from the perspectives that make security arrangement different from border demarcation. This was just one of the arrangements prerequisite to create conducive security environment for resumption and flow of the oil through Sudan as it has been agreed by the two parties”, he explained.

ABYEI

The thorny issue of contested areas was left unresolved in the 27 September deal, leaving the status of Abyei, Heglig, Kafia Kinji and other border areas to be resolved in future talks.

Luka Biong Deng, a Co-Chair of Abyei Joint Oversight Committee said the deal was one of the best temporary options which the negotiating team could accept to end dispute with Sudan.

Biong called for objective analysis of each detail of the agreement and the need to dialogue instead of being locked in blaming negotiators, describing Chief Negotiator, Pagan Amum, as long experienced and “shrewd negotiator with national interest at heart as top priority”.

“I think we need to be sincere. We need to place trust and confidence in our negotiating team. We do not need to doubt them. Someone like comrade Pagan Amum as you all know is someone with national interest. He cut [short] his education as second year student at Khartoum University and decided to join Anyanya II because of this land”, he explained.

The leading official was reacting to a remark accusing Amum of having sold out over the issue of disputed areas as he was afraid of international pressure which includes sanctions.

General Garang Mabil, a close and long time military ally of President Salva Kiir Mayardit, expressed his anger and dissatisfaction with the agreement, asserting that the deal sells out the land and violates grievances and values for which many in the country took up arms.

“We will not accept this agreement by all means. It is very bad. Our forces will not draw from 14 mile area. It has never been there before. How come it has been included in the agreement? The so called additional special arrangement is not acceptable and it must be clear now. If Pagan Amum is afraid, then let him go”, Mabil told audience amid overwhelming applause.

Dhieu Mathok Diing Wol, a senior government official and a lecturer at Juba University, expressed “bitter displeasure” with the deal. He criticized those who confused individuals expressing personal opinions and with opposition against President Salva Kiir.

“It is the right of the people to ask and express their opinions. The 14 mile area has never been a contested area and when people talk about how it is not part of Sudan, people take it as that those talking about it are against the president. This is completely wrong”, explained Wol.

Atem Yaak Atem, deputy minister of information and broadcasting service said that he thought that representatives from border states should be involved in future talks relating to the border and contested areas.

Alfred Taban,Editor in Chief of the Juba Monitor newspaper, previously known as the Khartoum Monitor before the split of the country in in July 2011, expressed his disappointment with the deal, particularly the four freedoms element. He called on the parliament to amend the deal before passing it.

“I would certainly begin my remarks with the attack on the government because the agreement is actually bad for our people to accept. Just look at four freedoms, they bring no benefits at all”, explained Taban.

Nhial Bol Akeen, Editor in Chief of The Citizen, a daily English newspaper, equally disapproved of the agreement, noting that he had been "summoned three times by security" services since the agreement was signed.

"My views have been censored. This shows that the agreement is bad otherwise they would not have sanctioned them if it was good”, he explained.

(ST)

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  • 15 October 2012 09:21, by Eastern

    Recently there were coercing people not to criticise the damp agreement; now they are pleading with the same people to accept the agreement citing other factors that pushed them to sign this agreement. Without this agreement in its current for SPLM government was going to be kaput as the World Bank report had indicated earlier!!

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    • 15 October 2012 10:11, by Dinkawarrior

      Nobody wanna gives a damn about the Oil! We care the most about the land that took more then 2.5 million people lives! If anyone among you decided to suck the BLOODS of brothers and sisters alone, he or she has put life in risk. Believed it or not, you will be held accountable by anyone even our people who die will punishing you. You better be careful for what you doing!!!

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    • 15 October 2012 14:37, by Wetkout Malual But

      Our government have had been playing a dirty games with some misleading tactically since they came to power, do you negotiators plus your little-mind President think South Sudanese citizens are stupid? What so-called four freedoms agreements will never benefit we Southerners . We had been supported you SPLM members. But, unfortunately, it seems you don’t even care about us at all, GO TO HELL ALL

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      • 15 October 2012 14:48, by Wetkout Malual But

        What the hell are you talking again since the agreement embarrassing us. Are you now trying to brainwashed a public opinion? or what are you trying say? You went to ADDIS ABAB, TO negotiated on our half but came back with empty hand and tried to redress your failure who do you think will listening to such rubbish details? I guess now no one will wast his single time to listen 2this trash conten

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  • 15 October 2012 09:25, by Tutbol

    So the so-called regional actors are blackmailing our people to agree to something that will take them back to where they started because we shut down our oil?. So the so-called regional leaders only want the oil tape opens, but are not after root cause of the problems that brought this situation in the first place? We’ve been in a lot of all these before to be coerced by these so-called actors.

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  • 15 October 2012 09:31, by Frank Man

    It is clear now that all South Sudanese are not happy with the content of the Adis Ababa agreement. Only a very few who will benefit from the oil money they hope to embezzle are in suport of the deal. I have a feeling that Adis Ababa is not a good venue for us S. Sudanese, It was there that Joseph Lagu was lured to sign a sell out agreement, Now it is Kiir and Amum. To Hell with Adis Ababa.

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  • 15 October 2012 09:45, by Tutbol

    We have been with no functioning economy for over fifty years and now the Europeans are using every evils they always use to coerce people to their interests. Let them issue that damn sanctions, we will endure it than letting these devils take us back to where we got out it without pleasure at all. We need to go back to our army & villages. Our negotiators should know better who the Europeans are.

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  • 15 October 2012 10:00, by Boyone

    The deal was not about to benefit all southerners but only for Kiir and his alikeness thieves. The senses that their money are running out and soon their fencer life styles would face a big trouble so he decide to signed away NBG land so he would pocked his billion of dollars sooner.

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  • 15 October 2012 10:00, by Boyone

    NBG especial Awiel people should now learned the true color of Kiir , it’s a weak Dinka and idiot person I ever know, Basher always knows he would fool him very easily by saying no to everything and kiir always a yes man. What was he afraid from? Is losing power or losing a country?

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  • 15 October 2012 10:01, by Boyone

    SPLM leadership fooled Sudan during the CPA signing and thy are bitter for losing the whole South and now thy are looking for away to trim off our riches border to benefit from what the have los and yet stupid leadership of Kiir losing track to dispute our right ownership of the borders just for the sake of the short term gains.

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  • 15 October 2012 10:01, by Boyone

    I never recall any concrete decision ever made by this foolish leader, people of Aweil suffered yrs of violence in the hands of Arab before the moment and after, and yet Kiir goes around and signed a trick deal which would only benefit Khartoum and himself and turn eye blind to NBG community, shame on him.

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  • 15 October 2012 10:02, by Boyone

    He is lacking qualities of a leadership and doesn’t care so much for his own people and their land; I believe he is a curse to us. He gave away too much of our resources to our enemy so that they can use it to terrors us. His 7 yrs in power is a big joke to our nation not a single thing this man ever did to benefit us as nation of south

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  • 15 October 2012 10:04, by Boyone

    I failed us to build highway in his country that is so wealthy and do anything due to their high income. The 7 yrs of his administration he was so busy encouraging division among fellow dinkas what you expect from him this man who dwelled on hatred. Sorry guys, I hope guys are on the page with me , we needs him out of power in 2015, vote zero for him .

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  • 15 October 2012 11:07, by jur_likang_a_ likan’g

    Since 2005 misrule precipitated the situation the motherland is. Luck of setting national developmental priorities for development has made the nation a laughing stalk. Pipeline to Kenya for oil export, hydro-electric power, roads construction could have made GOSS negotiate with Jallaba from the position of strength. The money stolen could have done that. That agreement was a total let down to SS.

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  • 15 October 2012 11:14, by jur_likang_a_ likan’g

    Misrule precipitated the situation the country is in. Lack of setting national developmental priorities for development has made the nation a laughing stalk. Pipeline to Kenya for oil export, hydro-electric power , roads constructions could have made GOSS negotiate with Jallaba from the position of strength. The money stolen could have done just that. That agreement was a total let down to SS.

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    • 15 October 2012 16:58, by Mapuor

      Jur Likang
      Our priorities should have been all what you mentioned,economic activites such as those would have helped us alot.Misallocation of funds led to corruption and nepotism.Money should this time flow to developmental things.

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  • 15 October 2012 14:49, by Monyjang

    meant that you gave our land away because of fucken oil huh?14 miles is not contest area.

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  • 15 October 2012 21:30, by ViVa Sudan

    that is if u have land idiots you must support da agreement other wise UNO will kick ur butt & now were to hide it will be ur END so Haramya GOVT or death ..new law in Fake state

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  • 16 October 2012 02:34, by SeekingTruth

    A DAMN SHAME ON THE LEADERSHIP! ISN’T IT? IF YOU KNEW YOU HAD NO STRENGTH ON HOW TO RUN THE STATE ECONOMICALLY, WHY SHUT DOWN THE OIL IN THE FIRST PLACE? DOES IT FEEL GOOD NOW WHEN IT SEEM LIKE YOU ARE EATING BACK YOUR INITIAL VOMITS?
    WHY FEEL FRUSTRATED THEN WHEN THE AVERAGE CITIZENS LABEL YOUR TYPES AS SOLD OUTS? WHICH YOU REALLY ARE! LEADERS ARE LEADERS ONLY WHEN THEY REPRESENT THE WILLS OF..

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    • 16 October 2012 02:43, by SeekingTruth

      CONT....OF THE PEOPLE THEY LEAD OR ELSE, YOU’RE MORE LIKELY TO BE SIMPLY TOSSED OFF FROM POWER BY THESE VERY PEOPLE WHO ELECTED YOU; PEOPLE POWER IS EMINENT SHOULD YOU ALWAYS BE UNDERESTIMATION! AMERICANS REPRESENT THEIR CITIZENS INTERESTS AND THAT’S WHY THEY SAY WHAT THEY SAID. WHY WOULD YOU GIVE UP YOUR VERY RIGHTS TO SAVE SOMEBODY’S INTERESTS AND LEAVE YOUR OWNS? YOU’RE ALWAYS A LAUGH STALK...

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      • 16 October 2012 02:57, by SeekingTruth

        ...CONT...YOU’RE ALWAYS A LAUGH STALK BECOS YOU KNOW WELL YOUR RIGHT IS IN FRONT OF YOU AND DARE DON’T KNOW HOW TO FIGHT FOR IT. YES, MAYARDIT AND HIS REGIME HAVE FAILED THE BLOOD OF THE 2.5 MILLIONS WHICH HAVE CEMENTED THE EXISTENCE OF THIS DAMN LAND! I WISH THE DEMONSTRATORS SHOULD KEEP THAT PRESSURE ON THEM. AND FOR YOU THOSE WHO CLAIMED THAT THE AGREEMENT IS ONLY TEMPORARY, YOU’RE DEAD WRONG!

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        • 16 October 2012 03:05, by SeekingTruth

          ...REM, WHATEVER THE NEGOTIATORS HAVE DOCUMENTED INTHE AGREEMENT WILL BE THE BASIS FOR FUTURE RESOLUTION AND THAT’S A FACT. STOP BEING IGNORANCE AND TRY TO THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX.
          RSS SHOULD KNOW THAT PEOPLE ARE THE GOVERNMENT AND IT MUST LISTEN TO THEM!

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  • 16 October 2012 03:01, by Alueel

    To Sudan Tribune Journalists You Guys need to have Editors to check your articals that you want post for the integrity of your viewers around the world to support this wonderful site. For instance thing like improper spelling, dangling and true story. I think that will help you be trusted by your audience. little piece of advice. Peace

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  • 16 October 2012 10:01, by Takinom

    Mr. President Kiir and his Government are annexing the land of South Sudan to Sudan in favour for NCP of Khartoum to resume oil flows and than both governments of Sudans are going to embezzles more money of oil revenues. shame on them!

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