Last modified: 2005-10-08 by zeljko heimer
Keywords: sudan | sothern sudan | splm | kenya |
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by Clay Moss, 4 August 2005
On the signing of a peace accord between the government of Sudan and the rebel forces of the South in Nairoby 9-Jan-2005. there is a news from report The Nation (Nairobi, Kenya) saying that under the accord, the South will not only enjoy autonomy and the prospect of an independence referendum, but that the South is also entitled to fly a distinct flag. The flag is described as follows:
"The south will have a new flag that closely resembles Kenya's in its features and colours. A black stripe at the top represents the identity of the eight million people. There is a star against a blue background representing the River Nile. It signifies a future with optimism for the people of southern Sudan.
Red stands for the blood shed by the southern Sudanese in the 21 years of armed conflict while green stands for the region's agricultural potential."
Jan Oskar Engene, 10 January 2005
It may not be a coincidencehow similar this flag is to the Kenyan flag. Politically, what connections are there between the Kenyan government and this region, if any? Or is it simply like the five points on the Somali flag's star standing for Somalis in five different countries?
James Dignan, 10 January 2005
On 9 July, John Garang took the oath in Kartum as the Vice-President of Sudan. It had not been to Kartum for the last 22 years. Until recently, Colonel John Garang was the leader of the rebellion of the Animists and Christians of the south of the country against the Islamic regime of General Omar Al-Bashir. According to the peace treaty signed in January 2005, Garang left his title of Colonel and will go back to Juba, his capital city. A transition Constitution was adopted on 6 July; accordingly, Garang's movement SPLM (Sudanese People's Liberation Movement) is now a political party with 28% of the seats in the Parliament. Al-Bashir's National Congress helds 52% of the seats, the northern opposition 14% and the southern opposition 6%. General elections shall take place in four years. In six years, the people from the south shall decide to stay in the Sudanese Confederation or to leave.
According to the transition Constitution, the south will have its semi-autonomous Parliament and government, its Constitution, army, banks, courts and "national" anthem and flag.
John Garang was born in 1945 in the southern city of Bor, in the Dinka country. He studied economy in Iowa (USA) and joined the Anya-Nya insurrection in 1970. Peace was signed two years later and Garang was appointed Colonel in the Sudanese Army, after an infantry training in Fort Benning, Georgia (USA). In September 1983, General Jaafar Nimeyri, then ruler of the country, sent the army to repress an insurrection against the Islamic law in the city of Bor. The 105th Batallion and his commander, John Garang, deserted, and formed the core group of the Sudan People's Liberation Army. In 1991, the rebels were repelled southwards by Al-Bashir's militia and the movement split between the Dinkas and the Nouers.
After Monique Mas, Radio France International, 8 July 2005, Ivan Sache, 12 July 2005
The parts relative to flags (courtesy of Jos Poels) read as follows:
2005, July 9Christopher Southworth, 12 July 2005
Interim National Constitution of the Republic of the Sudan
Part One - The State, Constitution and Guiding Principles
Chapter I - The State and the constitution
Article 9 - National Symbols
The law shall specify the national flag, national emblem, national anthem, public seal, medals, national festivals and commemorations of the State;
Schedule A: National Powers
Exclusive competencies (Legislative and Executive Powers) of the National Government.
24. National Flag, National Emblem and National Anthem;
Schedule C: Powers of States
Exclusive executive and legislative competencies of the individual States of Sudan shall be as set out hereunder:-
45. Flag and emblem.
Today's New York Times shows the coffin of the South Sudanese leader (and overall Sudanese Vice President) covered with the "New Sudan Flag" (yellow star version). The online version, at http://nytimes.com/2005/08/02/international/africa/02sudan.html, interestingly shows it covered with two overlapping flags, the hoists at opposite ends and the top stripe on both sides.
Nathan Lamm, 2 August 2005