AACC Declares 2010 a Special Year for Sudan

From George Conklin <gconklin@igc.org>
Date Fri, 01 Oct 2010 09:23:04 -0400

17 AUGUST 2010

The All Africa Conference of Churches (AACC) declared 2010 a special
year for Sudan. Alongside with the World Council of Churches and the
Sudan Ecumenical Forum, the AACC has made Sudan a top priority in her
programmes. In response to a request from the Sudan Council of
Churches the AACC in consultation with the WCC and SEF appointed the
Rev. Dr. Samuel Kobia as Ecumenical Special Envoy to Sudan to spear
head the ecumenical work on Sudan. The office of the Special envoy was
set up at the AACC headquarters in Nairobi in March 2010.

The main focus for the work of this office is the process of
implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) which was
signed in Naivasha, Kenya in February 2005. The main pre-occupation in
the coming months is the referendum to be held on 9th January 2011 as
provided for in the CPA. At the referendum the people of Southern
Sudan will exercise their right to self- determination to decide their
future. They will choose whether to remain as part of a united Sudan
or separate to become in a new nation state.

The Sudanese Churches through the Sudan Council of Churches have been
deeply involved in the search for peace, justice and freedom for the
Sudanese churches over decades. The international ecumenical community
has accompanied the Sudanese church in these initiatives, intensifying
their solidarity and support in the CPA implementation and the run up
to the historic referendum. Since March 2010 we have been involved in
high-level diplomacy and advocacy and re-engaged the CPA process in a
number of ways:

1.         Meeting with Leadership of the guarantors of the CPA which 
inclu de.

-          President Mwai Kibaki of Kenya.

-          Thabo Mbeki, the former president of South Africa in his
capacity as the Chairman of Africa Union Panel on Sudan.

-          President Salva Kiir of South Sudan.

-          Vice President Riek Machar of South Sudan.

-          General Scot Gration, the US special Envoy to Sudan.

-          Amro Musa, the Secretary General of the Arab League.

-          Hon. Moses Wetangula, the minister of Foreign Affairs, 

-          The Director General ministry of foreign Affairs of Norway,
and the Norwegian ambassador in Geneva, Switzerland.

-          Consuls general of Norway, UK and Germany in Juba.

2.   At all the meetings held the message shared is from the Sudanese
churches arising from their meeting in Juba in March 2010 as contained
in the document ?choose life: a vision for a peaceful Sudan?. (Copies

The emphasis of the message are:

a)     The integrity of the CPA must be respected by all.

b)    The self-determination referendum must take place on 9th January
2011 as provided for in the CPA.

c)     The outcome of the historic referendum must be respected and
accepted by all

d)    The international community especially the guarantors of the
CPA, has the responsibility to ensure that the National Congress Party
(NCP) and the Sudan People?s Liberation Movement (SPLM), the two
principals involved in the CPA must implement all the CPA provisions
to allow for a peaceful, fair and free referendum.  And that the
international community provides the necessary technical and material
resources to enable full implementation of the CPA and the historic 
referen dum.

e)     That the Sudan council of churches, under the support of the
AACC and international ecumenical community will work tirelessly for a
peaceful atmosphere to prevail in the run-up to and during post 

f)     That the Sudan Council of Churches will participate fully in
the civic and voter education to prepare the people for the 

g)    We are deeply concerned that the CPA implementation process is
behind schedule. Specifically we note with concern that the work of
the referendum commission has not started in earnest.  But this must
not be used to suggest postponement of the referendum because this is
to be totally inacceptable.

3.   We call upon the IGAD countries, the African Union, the UN, the
churches and ecumenical organizations in Africa to express their
support for the full implementation of the CPA, including the date set
for the historic referendum for the people of Sudan.

Rev. Ramadan Chan ­ SCC GS

Rev. Dr. Samuel Kobia - ESES