Southern Sudan Conference seeks to highlight Sudan’s ‘ticking time bomb’

Category: Diaspora
Published on Thursday, 18 November 2010 19:44
Written by The New Sudan Vision (NSV),
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Calgary, Alta – By the time the Southern Sudan & Abyei Referenda Conference is held at the University of Calgary this Saturday, Sudan will be less than 6o days away from what U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton recently dubbed a ‘ticking time bomb.’

Mr. Deepak Obhrai, Member of Parliament for Calgary East and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs will deliver the conference’s keynote address on Canada’s stance on the ‘inevitable state’ in southern Sudan.

A panel of experts on southern Sudan, local Sudanese cultural groups and artists, will also be featured at the awareness event at the University of Calgary’s Science Theatre 148, 2:00pm-7:00pm.

The referenda on southern Sudan & Abyei are pegged for January 9, 2011, a culmination of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) which ended more than two decades of north-south civil war—which killed an estimated 2 million people and displaced five million others—thousands of whom call Canada home.

The people of southern Sudan and Abyei will be choosing between national unity and self-determination. However, international consensus and opinion polls suggest Africa’s biggest country is headed for partition, if Sudan’s two ruling parties conduct timely, free and fair referendums.

Resolution of Abyei, a disputed oil rich region on the north-south border, an agreement on oil and where the borders lie, activists and analysts warn, will determine whether the country consolidates its shaky peace or reverts back to another costly war.

Luckily, Sudanese Canadians (‘Sudanadians’) don’t have to travel to the other side of the Atlantic to cast their votes, thanks to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the organization contracted by the Southern Sudan Referendum Commission to facilitate Out of Country Voting & Registration (OCV&R) for the diaspora.

The majority of the estimated 10, 000 southern Sudanese populations in the West have the option of travelling to register and vote in Calgary, the only center for the region. Toronto will be the other location for southern Sudanese in the East.

To watch the event live, CLICK THIS LINK. For more information, CLICK HERE.