Right time for Darfur leadership to unite ranks

Category: Commentary
Published on Tuesday, 03 March 2009 21:21
Written by Achol J Malony, The New Sudan Vision (NSV), www.newsudanvision.com
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abdulwahidandminiminawi
Abdul Wahid Nuur and Minni Arcua Minawi before they splintered into two groups (Sudan Watch)
Peace is by the door but the fighting between Darfur factions is an hindrance, they should unite now in good will for the sake of their civilian population.

With the recent developments towards peace in Darfur as shown by the Government of Sudan in signing the Agreement of Good Intentions with GEM, there is a good chance that the people of Darfur especially the civilians are closer to breathing the fresh air of peace in the once peaceful land.

There is a good analysis that the government of Sudan is poised on fighting a political war as an alternative to its previous combat approach to its enemies. This is due in part to the tensions with the international community and the ICC case against the President Omar El Bashir. Therefore the NCP political top elites seem to be devising a new strategy which includes attempts to handle the international community politically, delay the conviction of the President or strangle completely the ICC issue through dialogue and strike a peace deal with those threatening them militarily like GEM in Darfur.

However the Darfur rebels, both military and political wings seem not to realize that this is a chance to secure peace in Darfur by the Darfur people in one voice but not as warring factions.

Although Khartoum is willing to succumb to a peace process in the Sudan’s Western Region, it is politically dividing those factions that are currently fighting on the ground. The NCP is using that weakness of the Darfur rebels to calm down the war with its force and push the fight to Darfur on its own throat and thereby continue to destabilize it indirectly and exploit it the way it did to Southern Sudan in late 90s. W hen Southern militia warlords fought SPLA around the oil fields while Khartoum exploited the oil to its benefit, only to use the dough to empower its armory in thirst of using it later on other internal insurgencies like the Darfur and continue to suppress the South while at the same time go on its looting spree of the country’s resources. However during the negotiation for peace in Kenya from early 2002, the major political forces in Southern Sudan came together under SPLM/A led by late John Garang de Mabior. This was a visionary realization that they were fighting one cause: Freedom for the marginalized people and that of the people of Southern Sudan in particular.

The Nairobi declaration of Jan 6th 2002 between SSDF of Dr. Riek and SPLM/A of John Garang enabled Southerners to negotiate in one voice under SPLM/A and achieve peace in the South, Nuba Mountains, Abyei and Southern Blue Nile. And with hurdles of peace implementation with Khartoum as it is well known in previous agreements, SPLM/A is now protecting and watching closely that peace process with zeal so that it holds. With out the above merger the peace won't survive even if NCP was willing to implement it. The above case can be true with Darfur.

Therefore my message to my fellow brothers and great Country men who are fighting for the sole aim of freeing the African Ethnic groups of the Western Sudan is: Do not remain divided at this time when peace is beckoning for the people of Darfur. By so doing you will let down your people who put their hopes on you in those IDPs camps in Dafur and Refugee Camps in Eastern Chad.

Are you not tired of your people dying every day, their humiliation and being hungry in a land that can feed them and destroying their very potential for prosperity? I sincerely urge you Mini Minawi who is already with the government, Khalil Ibrahim, Abdel Whahid El Nur, Abdalla Yahya and the rest to halt fighting between your forces and unite now through a political dialogue and start to negotiate with Khartoum in one force even if with different factions brought together since you took up arms to free your very people who will continue to suffer because of your wrangles. The right time has come if you did not realise to put away your differences and unite the people of Darfur through peace. Those IDPs do not mind who leads Darfur provided you are one. DO NOT LOSE THIS WINDOW OF HOPE FOR YOUR PEOPLE!

*Achol J Malony is a Sudanese Scientist living in Melbourne Australia and can be reached on: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.