Census kicks off, partial boycott in Southern Kordofan, SPLM in Nuba Mountains detains head of census team, Abduction of Talodi Commissioner

Media Monitoring Report, 23 April 2008
(Al-Rai Al-Aam/Al-Sahafa/Akhir Lahza/ST)

Sudan 5th population census began on Tuesday all over the country with the participation of an estimated 60,000 census enumerators. Vice President Taha has received enumerators at his residence and seized the opportunity to appeal to all citizens to provide accurate information for

The exercise also began in Southern Sudan by firstly counting the First Vice-President Silva Kiir’s family. Kiir said census was proceeding satisfactorily, pointing out that some areas were inaccessible. He called for repatriating the IDPs to the Southern States.

In Darfur States IDPs staged anti-census demonstrations.” We reject this counting exercise because there is no peace and we do not trust the outcome of this census."

In Southern Kordofan, SPLM boycott census that kicked off yesterday. SPLM Secretary General, Maj. Gen. Simon Kalu, in press release broadcast by local Radio said SPLM in the Nuba Mountains opposed census exercise and called on all SPLM supporters across the State not to give information to enumerators and monitors claiming that NCP refused to prepare questionnaires in English and to include religion and ethnicity.

Meanwhile a team of enumerators visited Um Sirdiba (South Kadugli) to conduct census but SPLA detained the head of the team Mr. Al-Nazir Abaker and held him in custody in the area of Kardi.

The residents of the village of the detained person reacted by detaining the Commissioner of Talodi Locality Mr. Awad Abdul Rahman who was on his way to Kadugli escorted by three bodyguards and driver of his land cruiser vehicle which was taken to unknown destination.

Deputy Governor of Southern Kordofan Maj. Gen. Daniel Kodi ordered the JDB and SPLA commanders to head to Um Sirdiba to ensure the release of the detained head of census team.

Government vehicles mounted with loud speakers toured Kadugli, Dalinj, Abu Jibeiha and Muglad towns urging residents to boycott census, which is reportedly completely failed on the first day of the exercise in the State.

On the other hand, census chief Dr. Yassin Al Haj Abideen said the detained head of census team and the commissioner would be released and the exercise would continue in the State.


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