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Abu Garda continues campaign against Darfur authority leadership

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January 15, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The secretary-general of the former rebel Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM), Bahar Idriss Abu Garda, once again heavily criticised the leader of his group, Tijani al-Sissi, accusing him of failing to implement development projects in Darfur.

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Abu Garda (L) poses for a photo with the joint mediator Djibril Bassolé in Doha in May 2009 (File photo/ ST)

The former rebel group is de facto divided into two factions led by Abu Garda and al-Sissi. The differences between the two blocs emerged over the implementation of security arrangements but now reached the implementation of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) as the two sides accused each other of failing or hindering its implementation.

In a press conference held in Khartoum Thursday, Abu Garda pointed that al-Sissi failed to implement the peace framework document, saying “the Darfur Regional Authority (DRA) was supposed to implement 1070 recovery projects during the past period but in fact only 335 were realised”.

He further blamed the DRA ministers saying they do not have administrative or regulatory powers and they even do not reside in Darfur.

“The Ministers of the regional authority are like the guests, and do not have any responsibility” adding “the best evidence to prove that they only held four meetings during three years”.

Last week Abu Garada was prevented by armed men from holding a meeting in Nyala. The gunmen who are members of his group but supporting al-Sissi said they came to ask him how he dares saying they were not LJM true fighters.

LJM secretary general is not part of the DRA but several of his supporters are part of the regional body entrusted with the implementation of the DDPD.

Abu Garda who is a former member of the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) reiterated he has no intention to split form the former rebel group, adding they plan to hold a general conference for the movement to transform it into political party.

He added that the conference will discuss the outcome of the DRA activities during the past period and decide whether to maintain al-Sissi at LJM chairmanship or not.

LJM information secretary Sharaf Eldine Mahmoud who took part in the press conference told reporters that the “Movement” dispatched delegations to 18 states to brief people about the challenges of the general conference that would be held during the upcoming days.

He further strongly criticised al-Sissi accusing him of seeking to design the ongoing crisis with the group as personal difference between him and Abu Garda. He further stressed the failure of their efforts to resolve the differences within the group.

“Al-Sissi is a cancer in the body of the Movement,” he added.

The DDRD international Implementation Follow-up Commission (IFC) held last week its ninth meeting to discuss progress challenges facing the framework agreement signed on 14 July 2011 and now part of the Sudanese constitution.

The Qatari deputy prime minister Ahmed bin Abdallah Al-Mahmoud who chairs the IFC urged the international community to fulfil its commitments and pledges adding “peace in Darfur will not be achieved through agreements and protocols alone; rather by those who have the best interests of their country and their people at heart”.

(ST)

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