Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Garang foes may lose in Salva Kiir's regime

Salva Kiir Mayardit, pictured below, arrives in Khartoum after 22 years of absence to take his place in the national unity government.

Salva Kiir Mayardit

Photo: Salva Kiir Mayardit arrives in Khartoum, Wednesday, Aug 10, 2005 after 22 years of absence to take his place in the national unity government, stepping into the vacancy left by the death of his commander and partner in the southern rebel movement that is now committed to peace.

Kiir was named leader of the Sudan People's Liberation Movement after Garang's July 30 death in a helicopter crash. He will be sworn in as first vice president and president of southern Sudan on Thursday. (AP Photo/Abd Raouf)
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Garang foes may lose in Salva Kiir's regime

Interesting piece here by an un-named correspondent at The East African, August 8, 2005, listing some unfamiliar names. Not sure of the accuracy of the information, time will tell. It is good to see Mrs Garang had, and hopefully still has, a role. More women are needed in Sudanese politics and government. Here is the report, entitled "Garang foes may lose in Salva Kiir's regime" copied in full for future reference, incase the link becomes broken:

With the exit of Garang from the scene, the power equations within the Sudan People's Liberation Movement are likely to change in major ways.

In terms of profile and seniority, one would say that the next in the hierarchy after Salva Kiir is Dr Riek Machar.

Yet the truth of the matter is that Machar, like the other warlords, such as Dr Lam Akol and Theophilus Ochieng, who confronted Garang militarily, will be viewed with suspicion by SPLM stalwarts who dismiss them as recent converts.

Salva Kiir will want to avoid the perception that he is bringing closer to the centre of power former defectors who differed with Garang.

In terms of influence, the group whose political stock is likely to soar are Salva Kiir's longstanding military comrades, who have served as his deputies, including Oyay Deng Ajak, Salva Mathok, Riek Machar and field commander Kuol Manyang.

His longstanding military aides like Malong Awan and Commander Jadalla are also likely to be more visible in the new regime.

In determining the direction of relations with the Arab north, the people to watch are Yasir Arman, a Northerner and SPLM spokesman based in Eritrea and Cairo, the chief negotiators of the comprehensive peace agreement; Commnders Nhial Deng and Elijah Malok, and people like secretary general James Wani Iga and Pagan Amum.

Who is going to be who in Kiir's Cabinet? SPLM insiders are reluctant to make predictions.

Weeks before he died, Garang confounded pundits by dispersing key party stalwarts and appointing them as "caretakers" of the separate regions of south Sudan.

For instance, Riek Machar, a Nuer from Bentui, was sent to Bahr el Gazal as the caretaker of the region, while Theophilus Ochieng - an Acholi from Magwi - was appointed caretaker of Western Upper Nile; Pagan Amum - a Shilluk from Malakal - was sent to East Equatoria and James Wani Igga, a Bari from Juba, was posted as caretaker of Central Equatoria.

Initiallly, the postings elicited murmurs, with critics saying that it was a ploy to weaken key figures politically by posting them to the countryside.

But as it emerged later, these were temporary postings effected to avoid a power vacuum following the dissolution of the administrative structures that existed before the signing of the comprehensive peace agreement.

Thus, the most reliable guess about how Garang wanted to structure his Cabinet would appear to be a confidential document that showed how he had nominated key party leaders to a capacity building programme that was to take place in Pretoria, South Africa.

People were nominated for training in specific areas of government, suggesting that they were being groomed to take up posts in those areas.

Salva Kiir and James Wani Iga were to travel to South Africa to be exposed to how a liberation movement can be transformed into a robust mass political party.

Oyang Deng, Abdal Aziz al Hilu, Obuto Mamur Melle, George Athior Deng and Butrus Bol Bol were selected to study South Africa's military.

Gabriel Mathong Rok, speaker of the National Leadership Council, Kuot Deng Kuot and Peter Longole Kuam were nominated to study the South African parliamentary system.

Dr Machar was among the group who were to study the area of transport and comunications and information technology and communications, while Army Commander Paul Malong Awan was nominated for training in the environment, tourism and wildlife resources area.

Elijah Malok Aleng, the designate governor of the central bank, was to train in central banking, while Pagan Amum Okech was nominated for training in the area of public expenditure management and training

Kohl Manyang Juuk, Castello Garang and Stephen Ali Kamanyungu were nominated for training in the areas of railways, transport, and power projects.

Garang's wife, Rebecca Nyandeng de Mabior, was slotted in the area of rehabilitation of wounded heroes and orphans.
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Demining Southern Sudan

Demining Southern Sudan

Photo: Stafford Molelekoa, a South African demining dog handler, moves across a dirt road with his dog in Juba, southern Sudan, Tuesday Aug. 9, 2005 during an operation to locate possible explosives and clear them. A Sudanese soldier walks at right. (AP Photo/Sayyid Azim)
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Servant's Heart Relief - Sudan Council of Churches USA - Sudan Mercy

Sudansong left a comment at Kendall's blog Titusonenine, thanking him for the link to Sudan Watch. I too am grateful. As mentioned here earlier, there was a spike in traffic here for a few days - lots of extra visitors a day - maybe 400 or more - I lost count - all arriving from Kendall's blog. Here is a copy of Sudansong's comment that provides new links:
"Thank you for this link.

There are also some great resources from those who have worked on Southern Sudan, the Nuba Mountains, and elsewhere – where the genocide started two decades ago, and from Sudanese Christians themselves, now working with the Darfurian refugees in Chad. For instance:

Servant's Heart Relief - Risk management banker turns into Indiana Jones and and helps the Sudanese in Eastern Blue Nile and elsewhere to dig wells, build schools, detect landmines, as well as follow the oil money in Sudan from China to Canada to Malaysia, etc.

Sudan Council of Churches USA and Sudan Mercy: Sudanese Christians reaching out to their former persecutors (standing with the Muslims of Darfur), bringing food aid, clothing, and a message of forgiveness and reconciliation to the refugees in Chad.

That's just a sampling, there are plenty more. Very soon, the first Christian newspaper in Sudan, The New Sudan Christian, created by the Rev. John Daau from Kakuma Refugee Camp, will be online, too.

Please pray for our Sudanese brothers and sisters upon the devastating blow of losing Dr. Garang."
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UN and SPLM say 17 bodies recovered at Garang crash site

The UN said on Wednesday 17 bodies had been recovered from the site of a helicopter crash that killed John Garang, although Uganda has said only 14 were on board its chopper.

The reason for the discrepancy was not immediately clear, although a member of the southern Sudanese leadership council had earlier also said 17 bodies had been recovered.

A joint commission between the government and Garang's SPLM was formed this week to investigate the causes of the crash and officials have said they welcome any input from the U.N. or other international experts.

The commission, headed by SPLM official and former Vice President Abel Alier, is to offer a preliminary report within four weeks of starting work.
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Coffins of seven Ugandans

Photo: Red Cross officials carry the coffins of seven Ugandans who died in the helicopter crash with Sudanese First Vice President John Garang at the Entebbe military base, Uganda, August 9, 2005. Garang was travelling on Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni's helicopter back to southern Sudan after a meeting with him on July 30, 2005 when it disappeared from radar screens. (Reuters/Stringer)
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First Anniversary of Sudan Watch

This month is the first anniversary of this blog. Sudan Watch has a Site Meter that logs visitor numbers. Recently, new features were introduced enabling users to see country locations of visitors.

It was astonishing to see visitors from almost every country in Africa, including the Sudan. I had no idea there were so many from Africa - or Malaysia, Ethiopia, Australia, New Zealand, France, Germany, Canada, USA and UK ... I have lost track of all the different countries.

Although I can only identify a visitors by country, I can see what brings them to the site, i.e. Google search words used. It is encouraging to see 99% of visitors at this site know exactly what they are looking for and do not arrive by accident. As I can recall, without even looking, most of the material posted here over the past 12 months, it pleases me to know that visitors probably find what they are searching for. Thank you.


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