The Machakos IGAD, Peace Talks, On Sudan

The Peace Talks between the Sudan People's Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A) and Government of Sudan (GOS) that took place in Machakos, Kenya from 18th June 20th July 2002 under the auspices of IGAD have ended with the signing of a Protocol on the following issues:-

(a)  The Right of self-determination

It has been agreed that the people of Southern Sudan shall have the right of Self-determination which will  be exercised through an internationally monitored referendum.   The referendum will be on two clear options namely (i) confirmation of the  unity of Sudan as set out in the peace Agreement or (ii) cessation.  The Interim Period will  be of two phases namely a  Pre Transitional Period of six months and the main Transitional/Interim period  of six years.

During the Pre-Transition the parties shall work out a Legal Framework for  the Agreement and shall establish Institutions of Governance as provided in the Peace Agreement.  It is also during  this period  that steps shall be taken towards the implementation of a comprehensive ceasefire while assistance and resources shall be mobilized and secured for the peace process and reconstruction. The main Transitional/Interim Period will entail operationalization of the  institutions of Governance both in the centre and in the Southern entity as well as the  implementation of all the Arrangements and Principles set out in the Peace Agreement and its Legal Framework.

(b) Religion and State.

The National/Central constitution shall guarantee freedom  of belief, worship and religious practice to all Sudanese.  In regard to Legislation the National Parliament, shall operate in two distinct manner.  When it legislates for the Northern State/States, it shall use Sharia and  customs as the source of legislation.  However, when it enacts national legislations applicable to Southern Sudan it shall use non-Sharia sources and may derive its source of legislation from popular consensus, values and customs  of the people of Southern Sudan.  Central Government and related institutions shall likewise do the same.

It is also agreed that there shall be a bi-cameral legislature consisting of Upper and Lower Houses/Chambers.  The Lower House shall consist of members directly elected by the people, while the Upper House will consist of equal representation from the North and Southern Entities.  The function of the Upper House shall be to protect states from national legislation that is of a religious nature and which  may adversely affect any of these states.  If such a case arises, the Upper House may block it.

(c)  Governance of the Southern Entity

It has been agreed that Governance of the Southern Entity during the Interim Period  shall involve substantial devolution of powers (ministries and  national institutions) from the centre to the Southern Entity.  The details of which will be worked out in the next phase of the peace talks starting mid August 2002.

Finally, the SPLM/SPLA would like to inform the people of the Sudan in particular and the international community in general that the two contentious issues that have revolved around the conflict in the Sudan have now been successfully resolved.  When the next phase resumes, the issues of  power and wealth sharing, concrete establishment of institutions of governance, security arrangements, and  comprehensive ceasefire shall be addressed.

We hope that given the spirit and the responsibility being shouldered by the two parties, a comprehensive Peace Agreement that the Sudanese people have been yearning for will be reached.

Dr. Samson L. Kwaje

Commissioner for Information  and

Official Spokesman SPLM/SPLA

22 July, 2002  - Nairobi

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