KHARTOUM ACCEPTS REFERENDUM RESULTS
News emerged today from Khartoum that the regime has ‘recognized’ the preliminary results published by the SSRC – South Sudan Referendum Commission – which indicates a 99+ percent yes vote for independence from the North. At the same time have regime figures openly blamed the SPLM – Sudan People Liberation Movement for the now inevitable breakup of the country into two separate states, an interpretation which was met with the contempt it deserved by the Southern leadership, media and people. Suggestions that ‘it was never the will of the Southern people to split’ were in fact greeted with derision, considering the 99+ percent yes vote, a result which could have been neither rigged nor imposed on the people of the South Sudan yearning for freedom and liberty.
At the same time it was also reiterated by the North that a number of contentious issues were still under discussion and negotiation, such as the exact border lines (the North has arguably delayed and obstructed this exercise throughout the 5 year run up to the referendum), water rights, mineral and oil rights, distribution of assets and debts of the current Republic of the Sudan, nationality, citizenship and a range of other related issues. Also high on the agenda of the South are the rights of the people of the Blue Nile state, South Kordofan state and Abyei state, discussions on which are again being delayed and obstructed by the North in a blatant attempt to keep the people of these areas under continued ‘second rate citizenship’ and to hold on to the oil and mineral deposits in those areas. The Southern leadership has not ruled out to take unilateral decisions on the future of those three states, should no negotiated settlement be reached and as it has the support of the Eastern African nations in their demands for a free and fair decision process for the Africans living in the three disputed states, pressure on Khartoum will undoubtedly grow yet further to sit down and enter into honest and meaningful discussions very soon, so that when Independence Day on 09th of July comes calling, most if not all of the pending disputes have been resolved to everyone’s satisfaction and mutual benefit for a peaceful and prosperous future.