Mr. Jean Ping, Chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission [©UN]
By Waakhe Simon Wudu
JUBA, 2nd May 2012 [Gurtong]
“The Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union (AU), Jean Ping, welcomes the formal acceptance by the Government of the Republic of South Sudan of the Roadmap contained in a communiqué,” a statement released to the press yesterday indicates.
“This important decision will greatly contribute to the efforts aimed at defusing tension between Sudan and South Sudan and facilitating the resumption of talks, under the auspices of the AU High‐Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP), and negotiations between the two countries,” the statement added.
On 24 April 2012, the high level ministerial body of the AU’s Peace and Security Council sat in its 319th meeting and passed a communiqué, a roadmap containing a number of measures to end conflicts between the two nations.
The communiqué articulates the two countries to cease hostilities within 48 hours prior to its adoption, resume talks within two weeks and end negotiations on all post secession matters within three months.
The two countries have up to date failed to resolve remaining post secession issues; oil, border demarcation, Abyei among other diplomatic issues which policy analysts predict to be the cause for conflicts between the two countries if not hurriedly resolved.
Undiplomatic relations between the two nations have worsened since March 2012 when Khartoum launched air bombardments on South Sudan territory including underground attacks wanting to invade oil fields.
AU has reiterated her commitment to observe the full implementation of her communiqué on the two countries though criticized by some South Sudanese policy analysts who have urged Sudan to adhere to the call too.
“The AU‐led efforts, looks forward to the formal acceptance of the Roadmap, so that steps can immediately be taken towards its full operationalisation by the Republic of Sudan,” the statement read.