Update on the recalling to Juba of SPLM ministers in GONU

Oct. 10th, 07 (New Sudan Vision)

In a telephone interview from Juba, a senior member of the SPLM who chose to remain anonymous has told the New Sudan Vision that the purpose of calling to Juba its ministers in the Government of National Unity (GONU) is to “evaluate” the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), “brief” the ministers about the recent appointments of SPLM three deputy chairpersons as well as the addition of sixteen members to the SPLM Interim Political Bureau.

The interview was done by the New Sudan Vision following an alarming news report by the Miraya FM that the SPLM Interim Political Bureau has recalled to Juba its ministers in GONU for consultations due to deteriorating relationship between the SPLM and NCP. When the news of the recalling of the ministers appeared yesterday, the public got worried concluding that the SPLM was withdrawing from the Unity government but according to the senior member of the SPLM, “this has nothing to do with withdrawing from the government of national unity.” He urged the public to remain calm. According to him, the meeting is about evaluating the CPA implementation to identify “hindrances” that have led to the violation of important parts in the CPA and to identify ways to overcome the deadlock over those issues.

Asked if war is imminent because of all these violations, he said that “it’s something imminent” because of the violation of the key parts of the CPA such as the Abyei Protocol, Complete withdrawal of Sudan Armed Forces from the South as per CPA, North-South border as it stood on January 1956, lack of transparency in the oil revenues, power sharing especially the South's percentage of civil service jobs in the national government among other key things. He was quick to add that it’s not in the interest of the SPLM and its supporters in the country especially in South Sudan to return to war and that the SPLM’s interest was to try to solve the crisis in a peaceful way. He said that the willingness and seriousness of the SPLM to implement the CPA is shown by the fact that SPLA troops have been withdrawn from the North as per the deadline stipulated in the CPA. He said the only SPLA soldiers remaining in the North are those who are parts of the Joint Integrated Unit (JIU) as per the CPA. He called on the international community to intervene and save the CPA from being violated by the National Congress Party (NCP).

The CPA was signed in January 2005 which ended a 21 year war between South Sudan and North Sudan.The war killed 2.5 million people and displaced four million others. Analysts who have studied the North-South war estimated its scale of destruction as greater than the current humanitarian crisis in Darfur. The International Crisis Group in its report last month wrote that the CPA was in danger because of undermining particularly by the National Congress Party (NCP). Its report expresses concern that unless the international community balances its attention between Darfur and the CPA in the South, a worse war was likely to return to Sudan. Many analysts have so far expressed great concern over the imminent return to war if the key parts of the CPA are not implemented.

The New Sudan Vision contacted the SPLM Secretary General Pagan Amum for interview but he couldn’t be reached. Stay tune for more update should we reach the SPLM secretary general.


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