Beyond the Horizon: Sustainable Peace Achieved by Addressing the Conflicts Root

Alula Berhe
Sustainable Peace achieved by addressing the Conflicts Root Causes and Not Posts Allocations.
War and Peace

The concept adapted by the FCF (Freedom and Change Forces) with regard to addressing the issues of war and conflicts in the country should be highly recommended and the FCF should be strongly supported as not waver from this position.
The concept is based on the correct assumption that posts and wealth allocation to some rebel leaders is not a sustainable solution but just a temporary remedy for a short time. The ousted regime of Omer Al Bashir have tried this for tens of times during the last 30 years and failed to end the wars and conflicts to the contrary these rewards have opened the appetite of more war lords and not real revolutionary leaders and groups to join in hope of a peace of the wealth and power cake. The end result of this painful comedy was that the IDPs remained in the camps and the refugees in the disposer all of them depending on the international humanitarian aid to sustain a meager miserable life.
The real sustainable solution presented now by the FCF and as a matter of fact by many patriotic national personalities, political parties and civil society groups before them was that to address the root causes of the conflicts in a broad national framework.
It was a good start that the FCF have refused to deal in a piece meal fashion with the issue of war and peace as the Revisionary Front wanted which would have opened the gates of hall to horse bargaining on individual bases with the various armed groups. In this context we must strongly condemn the wrong move of the FCF to start a negotiation with the Revisionary Front before the start of the Transitional Period as agreed upon on the FCF January , 2019 Declaration. Anyhow this maneuver by some elements in Sudan Call which is a partner in the FCF was aborted was the signing of the peace document as an annex to the main Constitutional Declaration. The basic aim was to grant the Revolutionary Front some seats in the transitional period institutions this increasing the share of the Sudan Call and its power to influence the transitional period course and policies. When this is taken with the undeclared alliance of some undemocratic regional powers then the impact would have been greatly negative in the course of the December, 2018 Revolution. The last two points which we would like to add in this context in that first the Revolutionary Front is the weakest military and with the least popular support when compared with the other armed groups outside the front. Second, when the front position of seeking posts with that of the SPLM-North Abdel Aziz Alhala who have stood firm that negotiate will only be with a civilian government then the difference is quite clear. The message that the Revisionary Front must receive and understand that the December revolutionaries who have not been embezzled by the might of the ousted Omer Al Bashir regime will not accept or endure that from a much lesser force or seriously consider and mean less revolutionary false slogans because the last thirty years have stripped naked the masks of many persons.

Programs Ministers

The solid information obtained have revealed that the coming performance of the Transitional Period ministers will be guided and monitored in a fundamentally different manner than the haphazard manner of the last three decades.
The FCF will present to ministers and discuss with them the programs that been prepared by national experts to address all the challenges of the transitional period and the transformation to a civic governance system based on the rule of the law and citizens rights. The performance of all ministers will be closely monitored by the FCF as well as the civil society, the media and the citizens and public at large. The principle of the accountability of public officials wills the rule of the game in the coming days. All public officials have to perform to the best of their capability and in a very competent way or will not stay for long in their position.

Civil Service

The new rule in the Public Service is that public officials as the English name them are public servants and the masters of the public so any official organs towards the public when delivering any service will totally not be acceptable. This new spirit must spread from up to down the ladder in the whole Civil Service system. Needless to say this may require some training and orientation of many of the public officials on the new norms in how to deal with citizens in a genuine democratic civic state which is 180 degree different than that which have prevailed in the last Thirty Years when public servants were the masters of the people.

Rights Bill

It may be important to point to those who criticizes the Constitutional Document signed last Sunday 4 August,2019 between the Transitional Military Council (TMC) and FCF (Freedom and Change Forces) that we must not only look at the empty half of the glass.
One of the best parts among many others is the Bill of Rights which have reformed and expanded the Bill of Rights in the 2005 Constitution. In addition to that the implementation obstacles which have hindered the realization of the previous Bill of Rights had to a large extent been addressed in the new one.
Women rights received a major boost in the Constitutional Deceleration which will pave the way for the realization of many neglected rights. Same time build a strong foundation for their inclusion in the coming Permanent Constitution.
We must always take into serious consideration that revolutions donít move in street lines and most historical precedents indicate that there are many curves but if the revolutionary forces keep pressing with wisdom and clarity of vision will attain the ultimate goals they aspire for when they went to the streets.

Third Revolution

In this juncture it may useful to read our revisionary history once again .
The revolt against President Omar al-Bashir is not the first in Sudanís history, but it is the first since Africaís former largest country split in two.
On 11 April 2019, Sudanís President Omar al-Bashir was overthrown by a popular revolution ending almost three decades in power. After tens of thousands of protesters encircled the military headquarters in the capital Khartoum, ten generals stepped in to remove their former boss, establishing a Transitional Military Council, ostensibly to pave the way for civilian rule. The young protesters had braved tear gas, truncheons and bullets throughout the country; they were following in the footsteps of their parents and grandparents, who had toppled unpopular military leaders in 1964 and 1985. In deposing Bashir, the protesters had achieved what rebel groups, foreign pressure and even indictments for genocide from the International Criminal Court had not managed.
The Sudanese are proud of their revolutionary history, and rightly so ñ but previous revolutions did not bring about the change the country desperately needed.

One nation?

Al Bashirís time in office, after he removed a democratic government in a coup in 1989, had been characterized by conflict and massive human rights abuses. After taking power, he stepped up the war in southern Sudan, in which it is estimated that over two million people died. A peace deal in 2005 stopped the bleeding, but to nobodyís surprise southerners voted almost unanimously to secede in 2011. South Sudanís independence did not solve Sudanís problems. Conflicts broke out in the Nuba Mountains and Blue Nile, areas which had fought alongside the south in the Second Civil War, but were north of the border at separation.
The conflict in Darfur ñ which began in 2003 as an uprising against the governmentís treatment of the regionís non-Arab population ñ rapidly became the worst humanitarian situation in the world. The US described it as a genocide, but took no meaningful action to stop it.
Sudanís third revolution began in the northern town of Atbara in December 2018. Local officials had removed a wheat subsidy and the price of bread ñ a Sudanese staple ñ tripled overnight. Angry crowds burned the local offices of Bashirís National Congress Party. The economy had been in decline for years, with inflation reaching over 70 per cent.
Bashir and officials complained that the economic issues were the result of bad luck, poor world oil prices and American sanctions ñ though the economy did not revive after the latter were removed in 2017. Sudanís problems were political in making. It is estimated that Al Bashirís government spent 60-70 per cent of its budget on the security sector in an attempt to buy the loyalty of the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and other armed groups.
After the demonstrators took to the streets in Atbara, protests spread to other towns across the country. On 25 December 2018, a new body, the Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA), made up of doctors, lawyers and journalists, attempted to deliver a petition to the presidential palace in Khartoum calling on Bashir and his government to step down. On 1 January, the SPA, along with several other political and social groups, signed the Declaration of Freedom and Change, calling for Bashir to be replaced by a transitional government to end civil wars, rethink the constitution and put the state back on its feet. Protests about the crumbling economy had become political. The slogan on the streets was ëTasgut, Bessí (ëFall, thatís allí).
The uprising has often been portrayed as a sort of delayed Arab Spring. This infuriates the protesters. The Sudanese have overthrown unwanted military rulers twice before.. This history has informed every attempt by the Sudanese to protest since 1989.

The end of Al Bashir

On 6 April ñ the 34th anniversary of the overthrow of Nimeiri ñ a massive demonstration met outside military headquarters in central Khartoum. ëWe thought we were going to be killedí, said one protester. ëBut instead we were able to get all the way to the army headquarters.í Over the following days, security agents made intermittent attempts to dislodge them, using live ammunition. But members of SAF fired back. Ordinary soldiers were unable to countenance the massacre of civilian protesters, following the example of previous generations of soldiers in Sudanese revolutions. When President Bashir reportedly told his closest confidants that he was prepared to stomach a massacre if it kept him in power, the senior generals decided to act. In the early hours of 11 April they blocked Bashirís means of communication, changed the troops at the presidential residence and informed him that he had been overthrown.
The subsequent military councilís willingness to hand over power to civilians is the great remaining question. A deal has seemed close at points. The civilian protesters insist on a civilian-led government. The military has accepted the need for a civilian parliament, led by a civilian prime minister. The great sticking point is the composition of a ësovereign councilí, a supreme body above the Cabinet. Both the military and the civilians want to be in the majority. Saudi Arabia and the UAE are encouraging the military to hold firm, as is Egypt. Western countries, led by the US, the UK and Norway, have called for a swift handover to a civilian administration.

Third time

The protesters knew that, as soon as they left their sit-in outside the military headquarters, ëour revolution would be overí, as one puts it. So they stayed, creating a mini-city in a matter of weeks: a stage for announcements and concerts; any number of speakerís corners to discuss politics and Sudanís age-old problems of racism and tribalism; barricades where anyone coming to the protest was searched; a system for removing waste; doctors on call; even a school for street children. Revolutionaries discussed the sort of society they want Sudan to become. In the early hours of 3 June, Transitional Military Council forces swept in to chase away the protesters and closed their sit-in. The protesters promised to step up civil disobedience to achieve their goal of a civilian government. The final chapter of Sudanís third revolution is still unwritten, but it is impossible to dispute what it has already achieved.

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