Sudan must be New to avoid becoming Many
By Bor Gatwech Kuany *
May 16 2006 — It is the 23rd Birth Day of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement today founded in May 16 1983 at Itang (Ethiopia) by our Heroes Col. John Garang de Mabior Atem, Major Kerbino Kuanyin Bol, Capt. William Nyuon Bany, Arok Thon Arok, Salva Kiir Mayerdiit, and many more. It is not first time the people of southern Sudan have carried any rebellion, but with new strategy and ideology.
This new animal that emerged as a rebellion from marginalised people of south Sudan was indifferent. It came with a new vision never touched by any kind. A vision unachievable, unthinkable and illogical for people who fought for half a century to get rid of their masters, the Northern Arab elites.
The questions ever raised till now is how can we achieve the so called New Sudan, or what is it?
However, it is not inconspicuous for one to learn that the country Sudan is engulfed in three political and ideological paradigms. These three ideologies fighting are the so called the Old Sudan, New Sudan, and No Sudan. Most surprisingly, the former exist already and the later two are likely to happen sooner then later. I personally refute that the vision of Dr. Garang, the new Sudan is already achieved but rather written in a book-CPA. The book is not yet published nor edited. The publisher is not willing to accomplish the work while the authors have bent their heads looking down.
The term New Sudan, however, is not a name of an individual, nor a section, nor a clan, nor a tribe, nor a region, but a political and ideological dispensation and direction to resolve the long standing marginalisation of the so called the old Sudan dominated by a tiny Arab elites. It is just an ultimate solution to Sudan problem and is never been anything else! It is about a Sudan which must be secular, democratic and united regardless of race, gender, religion or tribe. It is about Sudan belonging to both Arab and African, women and men, small and big which should be free from any form of marginalisation how vivid it might look.
Many southerners including most of the founders of the SPLM refuted this idea and called it crazy, and mind boggling. How can we bring the head down to the tail? How possible Sudan come back to African map; a black non-Muslim becoming a president; a Christian man marrying an arab-moslim lady from a rich background, and people becoming one, equal at any tip part of this tortured land, and most dangerous, kicking sharia (Islamic law) back beyond the Red Sea?????
Every body from the south refuted and angrily reasoned that this animal called SPLM should opt for independence of our land southern Sudan, or just wasting our lives for something strange. Courageously enough, one man who sees that, courteously joke to his compatriot that, let fight, get to the 1/1/56 border and discuss this strange ideology thereof.
It is up to jellaba to accept the Sudan new or many, and not any longer the concern of the marginalised African nations and nationalities from Nimule to Wadi Alfa.
However, one of the said has to happen-either Sudan allowed to become NEW, or NO Sudan in any other form it has ever been. This is succinctly manifested by other marginalised peoples of the Sudan in their various statements as I quote from Sudan tribune during the signing of CPA: “The people of Nuba Mountains have an irrefutable claim to self-determination as an essential guarantee on their rights. Their demand for the right to self-determination is based on long experience of persistent human rights abuses, suppression, marginalisation, discrimination and exploitations by all governments in power since our independence in 1956. This makes them eligible to self-determination, which is now enshrined in international laws as a fundamental right for all people under the Human Rights Charter to which Sudan Government is a signatory. Therefore, this right should have been accepted by the Parties. The present regime in Khartoum has never showed any good well towards the people of the Nuba Mountains which means they will not trust any government whatsoever from the Northern Sudan due to the bad record of injustice and discrimination they inflicted on them. It is for this reason the people of Nuba Mountains are demanding the recognition and the acceptance by IGAD, Troika, negotiating Parties an well as international community to their right for self-determination, which would be exercised if the people of the Southern Sudan at the referendum voted for secession and the country is divided into two separate nations (Sudan Tribune, 2004)”.
It is, therefore, crystal clear that coming 2011, south Sudan independent, Nuba would want to be independent. Darfur is also pushing for that in the current peace process. They need greater representation at the climax of getting the post of Vice Presidency. If not, Darfur independent will be the ultimatum, which leads Sudan becoming four or many if no New Sudan!
Another threat for Sudan old is also at the back yard in the east. No New Sudan, no old Sudan. Sudan has to be New or it will be as never been created.
Practically, if we are to think for the jallaba, it is better to allow Sudan New than NO Sudan ideology. And the only way to allow that is to publish and edit the book written for the New Sudan-the CPA: implementing it not only from clause to clause but letter to letter; more specifically for the presidency to endorse the recommendations of Abeiy Boundary Commission; negotiate honestly with our brothers in Darfur, and stop marginalisation of our African brothers in the east. Let a marginalised be voted in for presidency and there will be no problem in 2011. Otherwise, as social animals, the marginalise people of the Sudan will adapt to the new ideological paradigm of No Sudan anymore.
* Bor Gatwech Kuany is a Sudanese residing in Australia and studying at Environment Science in Monash University. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org