NCP and SPLM officials signing the agreement in Addis Ababa [©Gurtong]
By James Deng Dimo
WAU, 22nd June 2011, [Gurtong] - The Government of Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement, SPLM on Monday signed the temporary agreements for the Administration and Security of the Abyei Area in Addis Ababa.
The Addis Ababa agreement provides for the temporary administrative arrangements for Abyei Area and for the redeployment of Sudanese military forces, the SAF and SPLA immediately consequent on the development of an Interim Security Force for Abyei, ISFA composed of Ethiopian troops in accordance to the resolution of the UN Security Council.
The agreement was signed on behalf of SPLM by party’s secretary general Hon. Pagan Amum Okiech and NCP by Idriss Abdel Gadir and witnessed by Thabo Mvuyelwa Mbeki on behalf of the African Union High Level Implementation Panel.
In the document signed, the two parties agreed with the provisions of this agreement shall not prejudge the final status of Abyei Area whose borders have been defined by the permanent Court of Arbitration. “Except as modified by the terms herein, this agreement respects the provisions of the protocol on the Resolution of the Abyei Conflict (the Abyei protocol)” the document quoted.
The January 1956 line between the north and south will be inviolate, unless changed as result of the outcome of the referendum foreseen in the Abyei protocol or other decision of the parties on the final status of Abyei.
The two partners called on the African Union and United Nations to support this Agreement and its implementation.
During the agreement in Addis Ababa, the two parties agreed that the Abyei Area Administration shall consist of the Chief Administrator, a Deputy Chief Administrator and five heads of department.
Chief Administrator shall be a nominee of the SPLM, agreed by the GOS. The Deputy Chief Administrator shall be a nominee of the GOS, agreed by the SPLM.
In each instance, the nominating party shall make three nominations for each position, from which the other party must agree one. Of the five heads of department, three shall be nominees of the SPLM, and two shall be nominees of the GOS.
The two parties agreed to constitute a committee to nominate and agree on the Abyei Area Administration including the Chief Administrator and Deputy Chief Administrator by yesterday. The parties agreed to exchange their respective nominations by not later than the 21st June 2011.
The signed document also consists with an establishing of Abyei Joint Oversight Committee, AJOC which shall be composed of four members.
Each party shall appoint two members to the committee. The two members will serve as a joint chair, one nominated by each party.
The Abyei Area Executive Council shall draw up a budget for review and approval by the Abyei Area Council. The GOS and GOSS shall jointly finance that budget.
With the exception of ISFA, the Abyei Area shall be demilitarized. Any SAF and SPLA forces shall redeploy out of the area. Henceforth, all other forces, apart from the ISFA shall remain outside of the boundaries of Abyei Area, as defined by the permanent Court of Arbitration.
As soon as authorized by the United Nations, the ISFA shall deploy in the Abyei Area.
A joint military Observer Committee, JMOC consisting of an equal number of observers from the two parties shall be stationed in Abyei. The force Commander of ISFA shall chair the JMOC and JMOC shall liaise with ISFA in carrying out its functions.
A special unit of the Abyei police service shall deal with the particular issue arising from nomadic migration including accompanying nomads within the Abyei Area on their annual migrations.
“The government of Sudan, the SPLM and the UN shall constitute a joint committee with the Government of Ethiopia to draft the mandate for ISFA, based on the roles specified in paragraph 27 of this agreement. The draft shall be submitted to the UN Security Council. The Committee shall complete its work no later than 21st June 2011.” The agreement read.
The Government of Sudan and SPLM request to deploy the Ethiopian troops in Abyei shall not be changed without the agreement of the GOS, the SPLM and the Government of Ethiopia.
All displaced former residents of Abyei have the right to return to their former places of residence. The parties shall facilitate the rapid return of IDPs.
The parties shall ensure that the humanitarian assistance reaches those in need and shall facilitate the work of the United Nations and other humanitarian agencies in Abyei.
The two parties agreed on the joint appeal to assist the returnees in the rehabilitating the people affected by the conflict, including assistance to those who have lost livelihoods, income or assets.