Friday, April 12, 2024

Sudan Tribune

Plural news and views on Sudan

Africa : Hypocrisy or self-pity?

By Odongi IbaluKirram

Feb 9, 2007 — Who would have though the astounding rate of chaos, murder, rape, and utter destruction that’s sinking Sudan deep deep—absolutely deep into catastrophic eternity is admirable? While if you think the ongoing manmade mess in Sudan is loathed by every person, you’re out of the hot globally conventional political style.

It is a welcome curse! An act made possible and compounded certainly by [some] the senselessly noisy and deliberately obstructive, incredibly bossy and selfishly inadequate “Big Five” United Nations Security Council.

Hu Jintao and the government of China complete disregard for core human rights values is exactly why China is much adamant the debilitating crisis in Sudan is a necessary curse. This complacency is exacerbated by Chinese selfish economic and hegemonic desires. That’s what Hu trip to the country/continent was all about. To argument the dominance of dictatorial rule in other parts of Africa, so China can balloon in the rat race for global supremacy. Naturally at Sudan and Africa’s expense.

Wasn’t murder and slavery passed as law in the Sudanese national assembly? It was. The Islamists scorch earth policy, first applied in Junnub and subsequently implemented in Darfur, not to mention the general destabilization campaigning is therefore legal state development policy—it’s within the framework of the sovereign law.

This is an indisputable truth. Except if one is inviting Omar Bashir and all NCP fanatics wrath, and assuredly they will condemn you as it is their habit to death or maltreatment. Ask Thabo Mbeki why he was declared, by Omar Bashir of course, as agent of the West and Zionist for confirmation.

On the contrary, we have self-acclaimed independent thinkers, separate from the sightlessly staunch admirers of NCP, doing exactly the opposite rationalization of what’s taking place in Sudan. I find it mind-boggling, but it is a fact, and we have to live with it just as we have lived with improper system of governance since the dawn of independence(?) I am sure.

Sudan, not Omar Hassan al-Bashir, it is charged was denied and rightly so an opportunity to guide Africa to achieve economic liberalization, political democratization and diplomatic mellowness. It is Sudanese, ironically, people who also whine about relentless war in the country being a sin emitting this nonsense.

That criminal deeds of one person should not be lumped on all citizens of Sudan is logical. But that the raging of war crimes in the country is an act of one man: Omar Bashir is sheer dishonesty. This is how we have endorsed chronic bad leadership and governance, throughout in support of blind patriotism.

The prevailing argument that AU presidency should have been given to Sudan, and somebody other than Omar Bashir would be chosen nationally to steer the chairmanship is ridiculous. First we should take stock of the politically implicating circumstances in Sudan. Does the situation from the bottom of our sincere hearts warrant such articulated move? Of course, a resounding no is the answer.

And there’s another camp that ardently argues for Bashir support. It reasons that AU leaders should adopt an engagist attitude if they are serious of Africa’s development. People like Bashir can be transformed, goes the argument, from “evil-doers” to positive role players by conferring the presidency to them. This is absurd given the track record of Bashir as that speaks for itself.

The African Union is already engagist enough to include “war criminals” in its fledgling club of potential good manners. And yet none of the barbarians like Bashir enjoying, if not despoiling, the AU membership privilege demonstrated willingness to rectify their conduct and build a better government system in their countries.

Bahsir was going to use his chairmanship to spit evil ideas, as it is understood. There is nothing incredibly convincing to suggestion he was not going to cement economic stagnation, political obfuscation and the flexing of his military muscle to heighten genocide, but progress.

The AU chairmanship is a rotating game. Last year was the turn of East African block, one of the five blocks of the continental body. But unthinkably, Omar Bashir was their surprising leader of choice. There’s a real big problem with Eastern Africa we know. It has led some people to conclude Bashir handed out plenty of “kitukido” that’s why his bid for AU presidency was unanimously approved. Unnecessarily, however, it was hard for the block to relinquish its position or support for Bashir as the candidate of choice.

The trickery card is an established thriving business in east Africa. It is a popular culture often played in the top echelons of power. This behavior seems to be justified by a popular joke in Kenya: “even if God the Almighty happened to travel through Kenya, and east Africa at large, kitukido or chai—bribery that is, Kenyatta had agreed is a thing to be honored by every visitor irrespective of status if descent service/or reward is to be expected.”

If the joke is not enough to justify the eastern block support, then who knows, whatever necessitated them to rally behind Omar Bashir in the first place, as their candidate to duly represent east and lead Africa in its image cleansing expedition. Perhaps it is callous disregard….

Another reason given is how expense the burden of an AU presidency is. The eastern block countries might have dodged the responsibility to avoid incurring huge financial expenses. But still Bashir is a renowned “war criminal” a thing clear to the block. What does the block consider more important: long-term credibility or the nurturing of dictatorial tendencies and crippling of developmental focus? So far they voted for prevalence of dictatorial drift.

Fortunately, those with voting rights like Thabo Mbeki though otherwise. And lobbying was instituted to sidestep Bashir. Credit to Mbeki and other right thinking leaders for averting shame. But one thing demonstrated by the East African block is sheer lack of vision and leadership. The recapitalization of Africa, though expensive, is a burden that ought to be shared equally and respectfully without let or hindrance by any AU member state.

So there is no such thing as sincerity in the region, no beating about the bush. Politics of no higher principles, however, is the preferred way of doing business. That being the case, the chimera of Bashir zealotry is unstoppable. The only way to arrest Bashir mischievous passion to promote linguicide, and all that is evoked to advance a certain imagined Hitler-like dominion, is to strip him of absolute power. Until Sudan can do that, anything else is illusory, with SPLM and other opposition groups getting hopelessly inefficient at their task and the petrodollar power adding up to his advantage.

With the not so uncommon practice of folly in the air, it is perplexing what Sudanese, Africa want exactly. The amalgamation of hypocrisy and self-pity as a plan to ingratiate change out of murderers like Bashir, and to please foreign foes, is just not going to work. Never will it ever work.

In an act of self-conciliation, Omar Bashir insisted he be allowed to draft the message announcing Ghana’s nomination to chair AU. Furthermore, Bashir insisted only Thabo Mbeki should make the announcement. The words Bahsir wrote boast of his understanding and clemency to let Ghana take helm of AU in honor of its 50 years of independence.

But the summit in Addis Ababa was again marred by self-humiliation. As Mathatha Tsedu observed, “AU issues were sidelined to let decorum reign.” “It was difficult to see the logic in granting prime time to foreigners to promote themselves without apparently putting a time limit on their presentation. It spoke of an inability to see AU’s core business as important and opting for ceremonial roles, etiquette and decorum instead.

“And therein lies the dilemma for Africa and its leaders because progress start with taking ourselves and our issues as crucial and important. You can’t assemble the leaders of our continent and subject them to the diatribes spewed by some of the guests.”

* Odongi IbaluKirram is a Sudanese journalist. He’s reachable: [email protected]

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