President Omar Al Bashir, without his intervention to transfer the peace process from IGAD headquarters in Addis Ababa to Khartoum, this peace agreement might not have been signed
We Are Closing This Chapter of Hostility and Violence, We Are Moving towards Peace Building Reconstruction
It was 2:30 pm when I arrived to Addis Ababa, it*was cloudy and very cold, but the atmosphere and the positive energy that had filled the city that day was extraordinary because in that day our brothers from South Sudan was*signing the peace agreement that will end*the civil war there and*will open a new page for a brighter future for
this country that had suffered a lot in the last 5 years.
Thousands of people have been killed and millions displaced, without a doubt the peace agreement is a huge step toward a better future of the people of South Sudan, and to focus more on this issue. I had the good opportunity to meet*with some of the representatives of the political parties who had signed the peace agreement. Our first episode was with the Federal Democratic Party/ South Sudan Armed Forces (FDP/SSAF) – Hon. Gabriel Changson – Interim Chairman of SSOA and Chairman and C-in-C of FDP/SSAF.
Q: What is your expectation from the peace agreement that had been signed and how do you look at the future of South Sudan?
A: We signed the final agreement, this is a new a dawn for South Sudan people and by the signing, and we hope that all parties will commit themselves fully to implement the agreement. When all parties have done that it will open a new page for the people of South Sudan in a stable country and to start a new life in term of stopping displacement, refugees, and also in restoring our economic stability.
Q: Now we can say South Sudan is moving from peace keeping to the phase peace building and development?
A: Yes, now we are closing this chapter of hostility and violence, we are moving towards peace building reconstruction and giving hope to our people for a new beginning, after we do so, then we will major construction projects such as the rehabilitating of the IDPs and the refugees, also the reconstruction of the war torn area.
Q: How is the international community going to give support to South Sudan in this transitional period?
A: The international community is concerned about the sustainability of the peace agreement, and that can be achieved if all parties commit themselves to the agreement, once the political parties have the political will to implement what we have agreed to, than we will be step forward for the international community to recommit themselves to the peace process , then after seeing progress then the people of south Sudan themselves will show their willingness to open a new page, after all of that we can bring on board the international community.
Q: When will that be?
A: Now that we signed the peace agreement there are a numbers of committees and commissions, that will start their work immediately during the transitional period, if those committees and commissions are doing their work normally, that will be one indicators that the parties are committed to agreements. Also if we stop fire and hostility reduced to the minimum or no longer there, that is also another indicator or test for the international community before they move in, third if we open up humanitarian corridor or access for relief to reach the needy people in South Sudan, then also that is another indicator that South Sudan is fully committed to the peace agreement and eventually they will come in (international community). Their role is very important in a number of ways, one of them that with start of the peace process , we will need huge funding because the activities of the pre-transition and the transition period will need resources and those resources may not be available in South Sudan at the moment and also in the region, so that is the role of the international community and it is very important, we cannot get that support or funding unless we meet the requirements of the sustainable peace agreements.
We will start a new page and that page is confidence building among the political parties and among the parties to the agreements. With this confidence building, we can build peace and how could we do that? There are some activates that should be carried out by the signatures to the agreement to show and prove to the people of South Sudan, that they are committed with co-existence or political co-existence, some of those things will demonstrated by their clear steps in implementing the conventions of the agreement. We should let the people know that peace had come and we mean it and you will stand with us and you will support us (international community), we want to end impurity, we want to end war and to live in a place where you can hardly here the sounds of guns.
Q: How do you evaluate the role of IGAD and Sudan in hosting the negotiations from beginning?
A: We are grateful, for the role played by IGAD in the first place to establish what they called high level revitalization forum and that was the decision made by head of state and government of IGAD countries, we had followed that and it had gone for more than a year and now we had achieved peace.
Also many thanks and gratitude to President Omar Al Bashir, without his intervention to transfer the peace process from IGAD headquarters in Addis Ababa to Khartoum. This peace agreement might not have been signed, so we appreciate and evaluate this sisterly country for what it can do, not only for the peace in South Sudan but also to stability, security and the restoration of economic stability in South Sudan.
I think what they have done; they did it because of their concern for the people of South Sudan and to restore the normal relationship between the sisterly countries.
We need to stand together and support one another, that support can do a lot of good things, it means opening of our borders so people move from the south to the north and vice versa , return of services, and also security in the borders areas will be restored and eventually if we resolved this issue of South Sudan, then also South Sudan will play an important role in fighting the rebels that are in Blue Nile and South Kordofan and even beyond to Darfur so Sudan is in peace and South Sudan also in peace.
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