A letter from Dr Khalil to President Salva
حركة العدل والمساواة السودانية
Sudan Justice and Equality Movement
Your Excellency President Salva Kiir,
The President of the Republic of South Sudan
Today, the ninth of July, we are all here to celebrate the independence of south Sudan from tyranny, oppression and racial subjugation. It is an independence from the old Sudan and its abhorrent and ugly face. We in The Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) are glad that the south has retained the name of Republic of Southern Sudan (ROSS) because they are the real Sudanese. It is also a time to pay our respects to our pioneering forefathers for their strength of spirit, their unfailing courage and their unwavering commitment to their vision of the New Sudan. We consider the birth of ROSS as the start of the dismantling of the old Sudan paving the way for a vision of a new era of freedom, peace, co-existence and prosperity.
This is a moment of happiness. Behind the tears of celebration there is mixed grief of losing part of our country. In due course, we descendents of Kush, must learn to exercise wisdom to look forward to a brighter future with opportunities to create a Sudanese nation that we all cherish to continue to explore and achieve. As we are all here to celebrate Independence Day, we must keep at heart the vision of the New Sudan. A future dynamic nation of Kush united in freedom, democracy and secularism.
We in the JEM have always been nationalist and warned that the enemies of the New Sudan were waiting to see the country divided and partitioned. We tried our best by all means, political as well as military and will continue to do so until we see the New Sudan a reality; a Sudan that guarantees freedom, justice and equality for all of its citizens.
On this historical day we in the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM ) salute and congratulate all the people of southern Sudan wherever they may be for their hard won independence from the old Sudan. We congratulate you on the peaceful success and conclusion of the CPA which has delivered your honorable and dignified independence. As Chairman of JEM I have always wished to share this moment with you. Unfortunately for reasons beyond my abilities I could not be with you today.
But you may allow us at the outset to mark this peaceful event as a success that is not only for Southern Sudan but equally for the whole of Africa and the international community as a whole.
Your independence has now changed the old Sudan forever. The remaining parts of the country cannot and will never be the same again. The CPA has inspired the Sudanese people and has ignited their love for democracy, freedom and justice. We should not forget that the final political conclusion of the CPA affirms the right of popular consultation for the people of the Nuba Mountains in Southern Kordofan and residents of the Blue Nile to decide their destiny and determine the kind of Sudan they want. This independence of the South coincides with the 22nd anniversary of the Islamic coup of Bashir in June 89. With this in mind we consider it as an obligation that all the marginalized Sudanese people must start the march and begin the process of achieving real independence of the remaining regions of the nation. This is the first step in our march to dismantle the old Sudan that has lasted from January 1956 to 9th of July 2011.
This independence therefore signals the start of the New Sudan and regaining the Land of KUSH. Let us reiterate here that from today Sudan should either pursue voluntarily unity in justice, equality and dignity for all its citizens regardless of their race, religion, gender or color or loses its existence as a country. If Bashir insists on Arabisation and Islamisation of the rest of the country and fails to rise to the challenges of diversity, freedom, equality and democracy that are enshrined in the New Sudan, then the north of Sudan will descend into a protracted war and fragmentation.
As a matter of urgent necessity, JEM calls all on the northern political parties for a regional conference. The conference should debate all issues relating formation of a nation based on voluntary unity, democracy and secular approach to politics. Failing that Darfur, Kordofan and the Blue Nile will either unite or confederate with the ROSS. This is not a farfetched vision. The revolution would continue until all the rest of Sudan is liberated.
On the occasion of the success of the referendum you would recall that JEM celebrated by releasing prisoners of war from the south and we will continue to release other prisoners of war at various other times. Our enemy refused to reciprocate and is still keeping many of our members in custody.
As we celebrate this momentous and historical landmark of independence we have to remember the three hundred thousands who perished in the Darfur conflict. We are sure your hearts go out in grief and solidarity with the peoples of Darfur. Now the enemy started to attack South Kordofan. In their hours of tragedy at the hands of a merciless Islamist regime we share their pains and sufferings. South Kordofan has been devastated by the Sudanese Armed Forces. We urge the international community to help alleviate the suffering of the Nuba of Kordofan and rebuild their shattered lives in their affected Nuba Mountains. Other serious issues are intensifying in Abyei region while another war is threatening Eastern Sudan.
The Sudanese President is rejoicing to build a monolithic Arab Islamic state after your independence. He aims at excluding the Sudanese diversity to continue the fundamental problems of the Sudan and exclude substantial numbers of the Sudanese people leading to more marginalization. This would certainly provoke resistance by the excluded and would equally open doors for more wars, death and destruction and insecurity to ROSS.
JEM believes that creation of a New Sudan is possible for the majority in northern Sudan sharing with SPLM the universal ideals of liberty, freedom, justice and equality and opportunity for all Sudanese citizens in a democratic secular system.
It has become clear that we must have an all-inclusive state at the national level and full devolution of power to the six remaining regions of the Sudan. Otherwise it is unlikely that the country would stand any chance of remaining united.
Finally we must pay tributes to all those who suffered and or gave their lives to make this celebration possible. In particular, we pay tribute to Dr. John Garang for the vision that he gave to all of us and the sense of freedom and dignity that he taught us.
Dr. Khalil Ibrahim Mohammed