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Darfur Regional Authority to dissolve, Peace Committee stays

June 14 - 2016 KHARTOUM
DRA chairman El Tijani Sese speaks to the press after the meeting about the dissolution of the regional body on 13 June (ST)
DRA chairman El Tijani Sese speaks to the press after the meeting about the dissolution of the regional body on 13 June (ST)

The Sudanese government announced officially dissolving the Darfur Regional Authority (DRA) and the Darfur Peace Follow-up Office on Monday. The Higher Committee for Peace in Darfur, however, will be maintained. The committee has decided to establish a general administration to supervise future commissions and a public campaign following the termination.

The meeting in Khartoum was attended by the First Vice-President, General Bakri Hassan Salih, ministers, and the heads of the DRA and the Darfur Peace Office: El Tijani Sese and Amin Hassan Omer respectively. The termination is scheduled for next July, when the term of the DRA ends.

The participants decided that the Higher Committee for Peace in Darfur, headed by President Omar Al Bashir, should continue efforts to implement the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD), and inform the implementation committee.

Sese stated that a number of commissions will continue where the DRA stopped with its activities for the Doha peace agreement. “The DRA was able to implement 85 percent of the items stipulated in the peace agreement for Darfur.”

Also discussed were the financial dues to the employees of the DRA and settlement for their situation. Speaking to Sudan Tribune, a political advisor of one of the signatory rebel movements (JEM-Dabajo), Nahar Osman Nahar said that they will be financially compensated based on years of service. Also some of them will be incorporated in the central government or civil service in Darfur states.

The chairman of the Darfur Peace Follow-up Office, Amin Hassan Omer, said that the meeting also decided to transfer the Council of Nomads to a fund under the Fund for Rehabilitation and Development in Darfur. The Darfur Criminal Court will continue its work, Omer claimed.

He added that the implementation of the DDPD will continue, supervised by the State of Qatar, and that it “will remain the basis for peace in Darfur”.

Referendum outcome

The DRA was established to serve as the major body for implementing the DDPD signed between the government of Sudan and former rebel movements in 2011. The document further stipulated the holding of a referendum, which was held last April, as a way for the region ’s citizens to define the permanent administrative status of Darfur. The option against the unification of states won by a landslide, meaning that the DRA will be dissolved.

Relations between the signatory parties of the Doha peace agreement in 2011 have become chilly as members of the LJM, then headed by Sese, publicly criticise the “fraudulent practices” of their chairman. In January 2015, Sese was ousted as head of the LJM and the Secretary-General Bahar Idris Abu Garda was elected as his replacement. Sese formed the NJLM.

Since then the DRA, with functionaries of both the NJLM and the JLM, was divided too.

(Source: Suna, Sudan Tribune)

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