Hold-out rebel leader Abdelwahid El Nur joins a growing group of movements and parties who reject the upcoming agreement between the Forces for Freedom and Change and the military. People on the streets, however, are looking for a quick solution to the economic and political crisis and hope that an agreement will bring stability.
The mainstream Sudan Liberation Movement in Darfur under the leadership of Abdelwahid El Nur (SLM-AW) denounced the framework agreement that the Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC) intend to sign with the military junta.
The current negotiations between the mainstream FFC-Central Council (FFC-CC) and the military are “hijacking the Sudanese people’s revolution,” the movement’s official spokesperson Mohamed El Nayer told Radio Dabanga yesterday.
“The movement will stand against any agreement or settlement that does not meet the aspirations of the Sudanese people for freedom, peace, and justice,” he stated. “What is happening between the military and the FFC is a recognition of the October 25 coup and giving it legitimacy. It is a straight deviation from the course of the revolution.”
‘It is a straight deviation from the course of the revolution’
He said that the SLM-AW will strive “together with all genuine forces that seek a radical change in Sudan to reject the settlement and bring down the putschists”.
The united opposition forces will then establish “a Sudanese-Sudanese dialogue between all components of the people in the country to address the roots of the crisis and agree on a civilian government based on real competencies and not partisan quotas,” he stated.
In former years, the SLM-AW has been pressed to join the peace negotiations in the South Sudanese capital Juba between the Sudanese government and other rebel movements. El Nur refused as he insisted on having a large internal Darfur dialogue first to discuss solutions to the Sudanese crisis on a grassroots level.
The FFC-CC said last week that the imminent agreement is based on a two-stage political process; the preliminary ‘framework agreement’ and the ‘final agreement’. The framework agreement will likely already be signed within the next 10 days and the final agreement within a month.
The final agreement will deal with transitional justice, security and military reform, the implementation of the Juba Peace Agreement, and the dismantling of the remnants of the ousted dictatorial regime of Omar Al Bashir.
These issues are not part of the initial framework agreement as there are too many differing opinions regarding these thorny issues.
This means that the framework agreement will be an agreement with the military without guaranteeing transitional justice, accountability, and military reform – key issues for many revolutionaries and opposition parties, who therefore reject the upcoming agreement.
Not all reactions, however, are negative. Political scientist Salah El Doma expects the upcoming framework agreement to be successful, “as it will provide a solution to the political crisis”.
“This agreement comes after suffering by the Sudanese not witnessed before, which has led to more awareness among them about the importance of such an agreement,” he told Radio Dabanga in an interview yesterday.
“The framework agreement is comprehensive and is expected to be approved by all revolutionary forces,” he said. “The parties that oppose it under various names are fronts for the movement that calls itself Islamic,” he said about critics.
Opinions on the streets
When asked about the possibility of a new civilian government based upon an agreement between the military and the FFC, all 12 people a Dabanga reporter spoke with in Khartoum say they do not mind. They stress there should be justice but that the continuously deteriorating economic situation cannot continue.
“Any government of capable technocrats who could lead the country out of these terrible problems is welcome,” an elementary school teacher said.
A solar electricity engineer answered that “the economy is just spiralling down and down”. “We cannot deal with it any longer. The prices of food and fuel need to be agreed on, as soon as possible.”
‘We need a government as soon as possible to prevent the country from collapsing’
“We need a government as soon as possible to prevent the country from collapsing,” another engineer said. “It doesn’t matter who agree on it, as long as the government will be capable to combat the dire poverty and the growing criminality in the neighbourhood,” she explained.
A woman replied that she hopes a new government will be formed soon, “whatever it will take”. She scorned “all that talk about principles” and continued: “These dusty politicians and analysts are only criticising each other on television. Talk after talk after talk, and we are suffering more each day. Last week, one of them referred to a meeting he had with another person who recently died. So, the dead are even talking? Let them be quick in finding a solution or we will all be dead.”