Home | News    Monday 20 April 2009

US agency to support elections in Sudan with USD 25 mln

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April 19, 2009 (KHARTOUM) — The United States of America extended a $ 25 million grant to support the general elections and the democratic transition in the Sudan.

File Photo showing Enumerators from the Sudan Commission for Census and Statistical Evaluation prepare for interviews with residents on the opening day of Sudan’s 5th National Population and Housing Census in Khartoum (AP)

The grant agreement was signed Sunday by the Sudanese minister for international cooperation Al-Tigani Fidail, the chairman of the national elections board Abel Alier and the US Chargé d’affaires Albert Fernnderz as well as William Hammink, the Director of USAID – Sudan.

In a speech delivered after the signing, Alier pledged to work hard on the National Elections Commission, saying "We will work hard to ensure the success of the next election" to be free and fair and in a manner to guarantee the rights of all the concerned parties.

Minister Fidail pointed out that the support of 25 million dollars, is the first batch of U.S contributions in order to enable technically and logistically the elections commission and supports it to play it role. It also represents a part of the U.S. commitment in the Oslo Conference to support the electoral process, he added.

He further said that this agreement represents the first direct and non-humanitarian U.S. support to Sudan. It is also an indicator of the US’s support for one of the key elements of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, he stressed.

The US Chargé d’affaires Alberto Fernandez said that this support is the beginning of direct and concrete US assistance for 2010 elections and for the democratic transition.

He added that this support is tangible evidence of U.S. interest in the full implementation of the CPA and the democratic transition, pointing out that this support will continue to include the referendum in January 2011.

One indicator of US attitudes toward supporting elections Sudan is a July 2008 report presented to USAID by a contracted company called Management Systems International (MSI). The advisory report recommended that USAID fund capacity-building activities for the National Election Commission, South Sudan Election High Committee, and State High Committees and their senior staff.

According to the USAID contractor, the US should also "increase support for grassroots civic and voter education activities" and "fund the development of media centers in Juba and, if possible, Khartoum."

The report also labeled as "unfeasible" the treaty-mandated timetable to hold elections in July 2009, urging the US to push for a later date — a step since taken by the National Election Commission which pushed back the date till February 2010.

Noting also that there are over 5 million persons internally displaced (IDPs) within Sudan, another more than 500,000 living as refugees, and 100,000 in the diaspora, the report stated "registering and voting may be problematic for many IDPs."

The assessment team also felt that the conflict in Darfur was a major obstacle to elections and opined that the people in camps should not be completely disenfranchised, but acknowledged that administering ballots to them would be extraordinarily difficult both logistically and because of certain legal constraints.

“In sum, the Darfur situation could result in the disenfranchisement of a significant portion of the Sudan population, thereby diminishing the credibility of the elections,” said the USAID contractor.

(ST)

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  • 20 April 2009 06:31, by BLACK DEMOCRATE

    Very great Suport but I don’t think if this money would be justly used in a right time nor necessary condition.

    I am sure it will be misused by extravagants in their own reasons related to their own problems if not spied by international views.

    • 20 April 2009 13:42, by Yakulota

      In democracy, it is fundamental that we all have the right to air out our opinions.
      And I also strongly believe for democracy to work practically, everyone using democracy should carry responsibility for their views and actions!

      Visiting this news site, am impressed by many constructive criticism in a pool of all kinds of opinions. On the other hand, I wonder how each of the critics stand in their daily environment!

      Do they ask themselves, "WHAT AM I PRACTICALLY DOING TO BRING ABOUT A CHANGE IN THE FUTURE IN THIS COMPLICATED WORLD?"

      I believe am not saying you should stop expressing your opinions but you should evaluate something like...

      ’Would I consider volunteering for a few months to live basic African life so that I can explain to the formally uneducated masses in Southern Sudan - what is the value of the 2011 referendum?’

      Or

      ’Would you say - it is unsafe over there! I need appropriate payment, I need readily available transport, I want three meals a day, I need clean mineral water... before I can consider the offer!’

      ...I believe one’s criticism is more valued when one make such considerations ;-)

      • 20 April 2009 15:20, by lokutaweng

        Well done U.S.A

        For your tirelessness support to the war torned Country the Sudan and specially the southern Sudan and Darfur.This money will be used for general election but iam worried to the person who will use the money.
        Well, they can misuse the money and nobody will ask them because everything is on their hands and all of them are thieves. This amount of money can facilitate the election for campaign and dissemination of information to all the states in the south -north. But wrong hands always lead to nowhere.

        God, bless their hearts for this money.
        By
        Kurto Oduho

        • 20 April 2009 19:33, by ojok s. ojok

          Please United State of America, why do you want to waste your money in south sudan? there is no any development there only coruption. they love to be in the bush.

          • 20 April 2009 20:40, by RED ARMY INTERNATIONAL

            Not waste but an everlasting investment in the freedom of South Sudanese.

  • 20 April 2009 20:06, by Dinka Aliap Chawul

    You never know These money may simply be used by National Islamic Front(NIF)government to buy more guns & funds evils guys like Arabs militias to care out genocidal activities in Darfur if not America must ensure the ways their aids are used otherwise they(America) will end-up funding notorious Islamic s fundamentalists in Sudan which we share universally with U.S.A.

  • 21 April 2009 15:25, by Thondet Manyang

    Hey guys look here!!!!!!!!
    Money and election is it fair??????
    Lets not laugh on promises.
    Since you all know that money is the great divel and an Arab weapons lets us not be bribe on our right.
    The board is still in the middle of OCEAN I hatred money to be connected to our lives (New Sudan).
    Who signed an agreement for that amount????? An Arabian open mouth man.Guys,
    lets us be far from money.

    In this election, i am scacred believe me or not.
    And GOSS should take time to dig out all Arab secrets on this election.
    Oh dear let not be sheat again

    • 22 April 2009 17:36, by Tolossa

      USA!
      Pay attention! This millions of dollar won’t be allocated for the purpose intially intended.Albashir will use it for its personal benefits or buy weapons and automatic guns to wipe out few reminants of Darfur.

      Please, you either better buy the electoral equipments and present them in kind or send the money for development purposes via NGOs.

      Thanks



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