November 7, 2018 (KHARTOUM) – The African Union mechanism for peace in Sudan has made clear that amending the Roadmap Agreement does not necessarily mean abandoning the inclusive national dialogue process.
- Mbeki speaks to participants at the inaugral session of Strategic Consultations Meeting in Addis Ababa on 18 March 2016 (AUHIP Photo)
The Germain Berghoff Foundation hosted in Berlin on Wednesday a meeting between the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) and the opposition factions of Sudan Call alliance that signed the Road Map agreement for peace in Sudan including the National Umma Party (NUP), Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) Sudan Liberation Movement-Minni Minnawi (SLM-MM) and Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North led by Malik Agar (SPLM-N Agar).
Following the meeting, JEM leader Gibril Ibrahim who is also the Sudan Call Deputy-Chairperson told Sudan Tribune that the meeting discussed the course of the peace process in Sudan and a letter the AUHIP Chair Thabo Mbeki sent to the opposition umbrella on 25 September.
Mbeki proposed to amend the Roadmap Agreement in a way to move directly to the Constitutional Conference after concluding a peace agreement on the armed conflicts in Darfur and the Two Areas. Also, the proposal says that the opposition should participate in the general elections scheduled in 2020.
During the meeting, the two sides exchanged views on the peace process. Also, the AUHIP delegation led by Abdel-Gader Mohamed aka ’Abdoul’ said that the Mbeki proposal does not mean bypassing the roadmap or rescinding the national dialogue. He stressed that it was a call for a serious dialogue
The Sudan Call vice-chairperson said the mechanism made it clear that “it is possible to conduct a comprehensive national dialogue through the process of writing the constitution without calling it a national dialogue, and that there is no a single template for the national dialogue but everybody can conduct a national dialogue according to its own circumstances”.
“The AUHIP delegation has stressed that Mbeki is ready to discuss any new ideas that push the political process in Sudan forward,” he emphasized.
On its part, the opposition delegation affirmed its adherence to a roadmap that combines the peace process with the political process. Further, they called on the mediation to extend an invitation to all the factions of the Sudan Call to take part in the meeting that Mbeki plans to hold in November with the signatories of the agreement.
In addition, they expressed readiness to make new proposals to push the political process forward.
The opposition delegation, along with Ibrahim, included Miriam Sadiq al-Mahdi, NUP deputy leader, Minni Minnawi, SLM-MM leader and Sudan Call Secretary-General and Nasif Bashir al-Amin, SPLM-N Agar representative in London.
It is worth mentioning that Sudan Call issued a statement rejecting the proposal to cancel the national dialogue preparatory conference and announced its commitment to the national dialogue as a forum to discuss major national political issues that would not be discussed in the peace talks on Darfur or the two regions.
JEM leader explained that he and Minnawi hold a meeting in Doha with the Qatari envoy for the conflict resolutions on November 11 to exchange ideas on how to manage the future negotiations. Also, they would put forward their vision on the negotiating approach for the peace negotiations with the government.
Within the framework of its two-track one process, the AUHIP will broker the negotiations on the cessation of hostilities and the humanitarian process, after what the armed groups in Darfur will move to Doha to engage in political negotiations aimed at ending the conflict in Darfur.
Ibrahim welcomed the initiative announced by the Government of South Sudan to gather the Sudanese parties in Juba saying it stems from the fact that peace in both countries is linked to one another and that instability in one of the two countries will affect the other.
“We are brothers united in one nation and share common values and history despite the political separation and the establishment of two states,” he stressed.
However, he said that so far they had not received an official invitation yet to come to Juba.
Juba is carrying out a mediation to reconcile the SPLM-N factions and to gather the government and the opposition groups with the view to bridge narrow the gap between the two sides and facilitate an agreement under the patronage of the AUHIP.