SUDAN WATCH: Hope endures for Sudan's fragile peace

Friday, August 05, 2005

Hope endures for Sudan's fragile peace

Today's BBC Africa report quotes Roger Winter, the US state department's senior Sudan adviser, as saying of the new leadership in South Sudan:
"The level of leadership is something I've not often seen among the rebel movements I've worked with on this continent. They're capable in terms of intellect, and they're capable in terms of vision. I fully recognise how difficult it is to work out of this current situation, but I must say I'm optimistic because the leadership is there."
Also encouragingly, the report says:
Another diplomat closely involved in the peace talks said the death of John Garang may in fact make the surviving commanders more effective.

He said the late chairman often controlled his organisation through the sheer force of his personality.

His successor will have to spend more time building consensus - something that should make them more unified than before.

John Garang's widow, Rebecca, agrees.

She has been receiving visitors in the light, airy tent in a quiet corner of the compound.

Seated on low cushions in the shade, she said her late husband's vision would survive, and that the leaders were committed to it.

"I told them that the death of John Garang was a wake-up call to you people," she said.

"You used to rely on him, now it's time to stand on your own feet, and they are."
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