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Republic of

Birth of a Nation

SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation


Republic of

SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation

First edition 2011 Published by the Ministry of Information, Government of South Sudan All rights reserved. Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or transmitted in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise) without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and publisher of the book. Set in: Printed in:

SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation


TABLE OF CONTENT AcknowledgementVII ForewordVIII PrefaceX Memorable Quotes XI


Diplomatic Community 13 GOSS Missions Abroad  13 14 Constitution 14 States Political Parties  14 National Flag  14 Coat of Arms 15 National Anthem  15 History16 The People 16 Geography20 Economy21 Transport And Communication 23 Tourism And Wildlife 25 Mass Media 26 Investment Opportunities 27

CHAPTER 2: THE LIBERATION STRUGGLE Pre-colonial resistance  Colonial resistance The Southern Policy

SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation

29 31 32


TABLE OF CONTENT Juba Conference (1947) Torit mutiny Sudan gains independence The Addis Ababa Agreement The Sudan People’s Liberation Movement and Army (SPLM/A) Role of religious organizations Some liberation heroes and martyrs

CHAPTER 3: REIGN OF PEACE: THE COMPREHENSIVE PEACE AGREEMENT (CPA) Main provisions of the CPA Southern Sudan referendum Results of Southern Sudan referendum Government of Southern Sudan (Goss)

33 34 36 39 41 43 45

53 56 58 60

CHAPTER 4: INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY IN SOUTHERN SUDAN United Nations The CPA period UN agencies, funds and programmes UN Mission in Sudan Non-governmental organizations 

Front and back cover photos ©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.


71 72 73 74 74



booklet of this nature takes the concerted efforts of many people. The Ministry of Information, Government of South Sudan, appreciates the role of the Independence Technical Committee for Information and Mobilization, which conceived and sponsored the booklet. The members of the committee were Mr. Mustafa Biong Majak (Chairperson), Mr. Faris Mathew Richard (Secretary), Mr. Moyiga Korokoto Nduru, Mr. Rehan Abdelnabi, Mr. Ramadan Kamil Abulangi, Mr. Abdalla Noah Khamis, Mr. David De Dau, Mr. Justin Alear, Mr. Francis Duku Abe, Rev. Patrick Jok Ding, Mr. Emmanuel Lubari Joseph, Mr. John Ndruga Duku, Mr. Peter Atem, Mr. Larco Lomayat, Mr. Samuel Peter Oyay, Mr. Miyong Kuon, Mr. Obede Kumdu, Mr. Karlo Arigo Wani, Ms. Raja Samuel Lupai, Mr. Kuoc Nyuol Biar, Ms. Nyenagwak Kuol Mareng, Mr. Bol Makueng, Mr. Daniel Deng James, Mr. Thomas Kenneth, Mr. Simon Peter Apiku, Mr. Joseph Gwak and Mr. Mohammed Marjan. The ministry also acknowledges the contribution of the researchers who collected information for the booklet. They include Mr. Santino Okanyi, Mr. Abdullah Keri Wani, Mr. Isaac Amin, Mr. Justin Jada Joseph, Mr. Alexander Enock, Mr. Aping Kuluel, Ms. Gisma Shaban Suleiman, Mr. Paulino Zizi, and the Directors General of Information of all the 10 states of South Sudan. The ministry also appreciates Mr. Ajang Monychol, Mr. Matata Khamis, Mr. Tim McKulka, and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) for providing photos used in this booklet. The diligent work of the editorial team which drafted, edited, revised and designed the manuscript is also appreciated. The team consisted of Mr. Mustafa Biong Majak, Mr. Santino Okanyi, Ms. Agatha David, Ms. Rosemary Chacha and Dr. Tom Kwanya from the ministry; and Ms. Catherine Waugh, Ms. Antonette Miday, Ms. Elizabeth Murekio, and Ms. Sezar Amin from the United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMIS). It is not possible to list the names of all the people who contributed to this booklet. The ministry acknowledges your role.Your selfless contribution to the publication of this booklet will be celebrated wherever it is read.

SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation




ur struggle has been long. Its memory has been carried in our hearts and passed on orally from one generation to the other. Due to the limitations of the human mind to store and recollect over time, some of the details may be lost between generations. This booklet is a valuable reference of our struggle that will remind our children, who may not have experienced it, of where we have come from. It will corroborate the narratives that their fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, uncles, aunties and cousins will share with them on the history, struggles and triumph of their compatriots. It will also renew their patriotism and commitment to defend the sovereignty of their country knowing that it was bought by the blood of millions of their kinsmen. Similarly, we cannot be everywhere in the world where there is a need for our story. This booklet will be one of our trusted messengers bearing our story to the world. From public library reading areas, academic lecture halls or private living rooms, this booklet will repeat our story faithfully and challenge progressive peoples of the world not to allow a repeat of our experience of humiliation and wanton loss anywhere else on the globe. In the hands of the downtrodden, it will be an inspiration and consolation that a fight bravely waged for an honest and justified cause will always be won however long it takes. It will also jog any current or potential oppressors to the reality that good always wins and that all human beings have a God-given inalienable right to freedom and self-determination. Any person, institution or ideology that stands in their way to this realization will be crushed flat. I commend the Ministry of Information and all the people and organizations that diligently collected, compiled, edited, laid-out and printed this booklet. I am also grateful to the members of the Independence Technical Committee for Information and Mobilization which conceived the idea. I am very proud to be associated with you and this work. I urge all our patriotic citizens to each get a copy of this booklet and keep it as a souvenir of our freedom. I also urge them to nurture the nascent peace we currently enjoy and perpetuate it in the lives of our children to ensure that future generations do not go through a gruesome experience as we have. May God bless the Republic of South Sudan and keep us in peace and prosperity for ever. It is now my pleasure and privilege to wish you an insightful reading. Lt. Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit President, Republic of South Sudan 9 July 2011


©UNMIS/Paul Banks. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation




he story of South Sudan’s liberation struggle has been told in myriad ways in diverse media and forums. Some of the sources have been accurate while many others have been off the mark. But none can be as authentic as our own reflections of our liberation experiences. In your hands today is our story, as they say, from the horse’s mouth. The first chapter introduces South Sudan; its history, people, geography, economy and values. It paints a true picture of who South Sudanese truly are, what we have been through, and where we hope to go. It also presents a glimpse of the rich and virgin natural resources that our country is endowed with. The second chapter presents the story of our liberation. Initially waged by traditional chiefs and prophets, our struggle passed through many hands and hearts but our vision remained the same. We rose against invaders who plundered our territory of black gold (people), white gold (ivory) and yellow gold (real gold). Though they enslaved us, killed us and discriminated us, the inextinguishable fire of liberation in our hearts glowed on. This chapter recollects the stages of our struggle as well as the respective gallant heroes and heroines involved in it through to the referendum, which sealed our victory. The third chapter describes the Government of South Sudan; its origins, structure, achievements and priorities. The fourth chapter presents the role played by the international community as well as United Nations agencies in the liberation struggle, the negotiation of peace accords, especially the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), as well as reconstruction of the country. We recognize that our struggle has been long. Therefore, we are alive to the fact that a book of this size cannot tell the whole story. Though it is just a scratch on the surface, it is invaluable as a pedestal from which other works can be launched. I wish to express my gratitude to the people and organizations that have made the publication of this booklet possible. I appreciate the strategic and material support from the Independence Technical Committee for Information and Mobilization; the researchers who collected the data from all the states of South Sudan; the team working under the Director General of Information who compiled the manuscript; and the UNMIS Public Information staff who copyedited and typeset the manuscript.Your work is a great contribution to our liberation struggle. Though due diligence has been done to ensure that all the information is accurate, I take this early opportunity to apologize for any mistakes which may have escaped our notice. I reiterate that any such mistakes were not intentional and welcome your feedback on the same. Please, have a pleasant reading. H.E. Dr. Barnaba Marial Benjamin Minister for Information and Official Spokesperson Government of South Sudan 9 July 2011



Garang, the son of my mother, have you come? Take over the command from here. Chagai, my work is finished: give me something to drink and let’s celebrate the start of the revolution.” Major Kerubino Kuanyin Bol, Commander SAF Battalion 105, Bor, 13 May 1983

I and those who joined me in the bush and fought for more than 20 years have brought to you CPA in a golden plate. Our mission is accomplished. It is now your turn, especially those who did not have a chance to experience bush-life. When time comes to vote at referendum, it is your golden choice to determine your fate. Would you like to vote to be second class citizens in your own country, it is absolutely your choice.” Dr. John Garang de Mabior, Chairman of SPLM and SPLA Commander in Chief, Rumbek, 15 May 2005

You have voted for freedom, equality, justice and democracy.You have voted for the fulfilment of the ideals that inspired our struggle from its inception in 1983. As a people, you have chosen the path to permanent peace.You have chosen the path to human dignity. And you have chosen the path to nationhood.” Lt. Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit, GOSS President, Juba, 8 February 2011

SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



SOUTH SUDAN AT A GLANCE History The people Geography Economy Transport and communication Tourism and wildlife Mass media

ŠMinistry of Information.

Investment opportunities


Official Name: Republic of South Sudan Independence Day: 9 July 2011 Capital City: Juba Time Zone: East African Time (GMT+3) Official Language: English Currency: South Sudan Pound (SSP) Population: 8,260,490 (2008 census) Religion: Christianity, traditional African religions and Islam. The majority are Christians.

Diplomatic Community: EMBASSIES AND CONSULATES China Netherlands Egypt Nigeria Eritrea Norway Ethiopia South Africa France Turky Germany Uganda India United Kingdom Italy United States Kenya Zimbabwe Libya

GOSS Missions Abroad:

Egypt, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Kenya, Uganda, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Zimbabwe, Nigeria, South Africa, Australia, Norway, Belgium, United Kingdom, Canada and United States of America. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



Constitution: Transitional Constitution of South Sudan (2011) States: The Republic of South Sudan has 10 states. They include Central Equatoria (Juba),

Western Equatoria (Yambio), Eastern Equatoria, (Torit), Jonglei (Bor), Unity (Bentiu), Upper Nile (Malakal), Lakes (Rumbek), Warrap (Kuacjok), Western Bahr el Ghazal (Wau), and Northern Bahr el Ghazal (Aweil).

Political Parties: Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) Union of Sudan African Parties (USAP 1) National Congress Party (NCP) Union of Sudan African Parties (USAP 2) Sudan People’s Liberation Movement Democratic Change (SPLM-DC) Sudan African National Union (SANU) United Democratic Front (UDF)

South Sudan Democratic Front (SSDF) United Democratic Salvation Front (UDSF)

Initially used by the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army during the liberation struggle, the flag was adopted as the national flag of the new Republic of South Sudan by all political parties, the Government of Southern Sudan cabinet and the Southern Sudan Legislative Assembly. The flag’s colours symbolize the following: Black African skin. Peace attained after many years of the liberation struggle. Blood that was shed by the liberation struggle martyrs. The countries natural resources. Waters of the Nile River, a source of life for the country. Star guiding the country and its citizens.


©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

National Flag


Coat of Arms

The prominent feature of the coat of arms is the African fish eagle (Haliaeetus vocifer), which is common in most areas of South Sudan. It symbolizes vision, strength, resilience and majesty. The eagle is leaning against a traditional shield and crossed spear and spade, which symbolize the people’s resolve to protect the sovereignty of their republic and work hard to feed it.

National Anthem

In August 2010, South Sudanese were invited to compose a national anthem. After three rounds of competition, University of Juba students won with their lyrics titled South Sudan Oyee (Hurray). A technical committee rearranged the original lyrics, which were then adopted as the official national anthem. The first stanza expresses gratitude for the abundant natural resources the country is endowed with, the second celebrates peace that the country now enjoys, while the third epitomizes the struggle of South Sudanese. Oh God We praise and glorify you For your grace on South Sudan, Land of great abundance Uphold us united in peace and harmony.

ŠMinistry of Information.

Oh motherland We rise raising flag with the guiding star And sing songs of freedom with joy, For justice, liberty and prosperity Shall forever more reign. Oh great patriots Let us stand up in silence and respect, Saluting our martyrs whose blood Cemented our national foundation, We vow to protect our nation Oh God bless South Sudan. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation





o state existed in the territory now known as South Sudan before the European scramble for Africa. The area only consisted of small, medium and large nationalities that coexisted in relative harmony. The indigenous populations and their territories remain largely the same to date. This tranquil existence was interrupted by European invaders seeking trade commodities and markets. South Sudan became the main source of trade commodities such as slaves, gold, ivory and timber. Thus, enormous human and other resources were plundered for generations. Modern South Sudan emerged during the Anglo-Egyptian Condominium (1898-1955), upon the break-up of the Ottoman Empire. Britain and Egypt colluded to occupy Sudan with separate administrative arrangements for the north and south. After the defeat of the Mahdist army in 1898 during the battle of Omdurman, North Sudanese accepted the rule of the new AngloEgyptian regime. However, South Sudanese rejected the regime and continued to fight for their independence. This struggle for liberation continued for several years, even after Sudan obtained independence in 1956. Sadly, 37 of the past 56 years have been wasted on major civil conflicts; the first from 1955-1972 and the second from 1982 to 2005 when the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) was signed. In fulfilment of a provision of the CPA, South Sudanese voted for total independence during the January 2011 referendum. South Sudan was declared a sovereign state on 9 July 2011.



ndigenous people of South Sudan can be broadly categorized into the Nilotic, Nilo-Hamitic and the South-Western Sudanic groups.

Nilotic people include the Dinka, Nuer, Shilluk, Murle, Kachiopo, Jie, Anyuak, Acholi, Maban, Kuma, Lou (Jur), Bango, Bai, Ndogo, Gulu, Endri, Forgee, Chod (Jur), Khara, Ngorgule, Forugi, Siri, Zandi, Benga, Agar, Pakam, Gok, Ciec, Aliap, Hopi, Guere, Atuot, Apaak, Lango, Pari, Otuho and Ajaa. Nilo-Hamitic groups include the Bari, Mundari, Kakwa, Pojulu, Nyangwara, Kuku, Latuko, Lokoya, Toposa, Buya, Lopit, Kuku, Kakwa, Nyabgwara, Tennet, Lopit and Didinga. The South-Western Sudanic group includes Kresh, Balanda, Banda, Ndogo, Zande, Madi, Olubo, Murus, Mundu, Baka, Avukaya and Makaraka.


ŠMinistry of Information.


South Sudanese are world renowned for their impressive height. They are bold, patriotic, hospitable, honest and hard-working. South Sudanese communities generally live in semi-independent homesteads forming villages inhabited by close and extended relatives. Their societies are structured into kinships, clans and villages administered by a king or chief, depending on the ethnic community. South Sudanese practise Christianity, Islam and indigenous religions. Some communities also believe in the power of spirits. Consequently, diviners, rainmakers, fortune-tellers and spearmasters are revered in these communities. The South Sudanese generally eat together in groups differentiated by gender, age and social status. Depending on their communities, South Sudanese enjoy a wide variety of foods. Some of their staple foods include milk, beef, dura (millet), sorghum, honey, fish, mutton, traditional herbs and vegetables, groundnuts, beans, wild game, sesame, finger millet and yams. Traditionally, there is clear division of labour depending on gender, age and social status. Men generally fend for and defend the family while women are homemakers. All communities have some form of initiation rite into adulthood. Removal of lower teeth, facial markings, wearing of special beads and male circumcision (among the Bantu groups) are some of the common initiation rites practised by the people of South Sudan. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation


©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.



ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka.


Marriage is one of the major milestones among South Sudanese and often involves all members of the immediate and extended families, including maternal relatives in some communities. Ordinarily, youth do not engage in marital arrangements directly; their parents discuss, facilitate and organize marriage of their children. Various communities perform diverse rites during marriages. However, exchange of gifts between families is common. Bride-price (dowry) is an important element of marriage. Marriage creates deep bonds between the families involved, making divorce impossible except where serious matters are involved. In case of a divorce, the whole dowry or part of it is returned to the man and his family. Childbirth is also treated as special, with specific rituals being performed depending on the community and gender of the child. Children are generally named according to seasons and events or after relatives. Due to the elevated status of cattle in most communities, children may also be named after the colour of the family cattle. Boys take the colour of bulls while girls take that of cows. Funeral rites are very elaborate. Among the Dinka community, men are buried on their right and women on their left. Wife inheritance is also practised among several South Sudanese communities, ostensibly to enable a dead husband’s kinsmen to continue his lineage and protect his family. Generally, a widow is inherited by close relatives, although in some communities she is free to pick an inheritor of her choice.

SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation


ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka.


GEOGRAPHY Area: 619,745 square kilometres. Boundaries: Sudan to the north, Ethiopia to the east, Uganda and Kenya to the

southeast, Democratic Republic of Congo to the southwest and Central African Republic to the west. Climate: Equatorial climate with high humidity and lots of rainfall. The rainy season varies but is generally between April and November. Temperatures are moderate but vary depending on the season. Terrain: Mainly plain interrupted every so often by hilly areas with thick equatorial vegetation and savannah grasslands. The country also has mountainous ranges along its border with Uganda. Some of these include Imatong, Didinga and Dongotona, which rise more than 3,000 metres above sea level. Mineral Resources: Include petroleum, iron ore, gold, silver, copper, aluminium, coal, uranium, chromium ore, copper, zinc, mica, diamond, quartz and tungsten. Water Resources: The River Nile is the dominant geographic feature in South Sudan, flowing across the country. South Sudan is home to the world’s largest swamp, the Sudd, which covers a total area of 30,000 square kilometres.


ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka.




he economy of South Sudan has been predominately rural-based and subsistent in nature.

Banking: There are 30 commercial investment and agricultural banks operating in South Sudan under regulation of the Bank of South Sudan (BoSS). Commercial banks include Ivory Bank (1993), Nile Commercial Bank (2005), Buffalo Commercial Bank (2007), Bank of Ethiopia (2009), KCB Bank Group (2005) and Equity Bank (2009). Finance: Still a growing sector, microfinance and microcredit institutions include Sudan Microfinance Initiative, Bangladesh Rural Cooperation (BRAC), Savannah Farmers’ Cooperation (SFC) and Finance Sudan. Agriculture: South Sudan has great agricultural potential. Of its 82 million-hectare land surface, more than half is estimated to be suitable for agriculture. Some common agricultural products include pineapple, cotton, groundnuts, sorghum, millet, wheat, cotton, sweet potatoes, mangoes, pawpaw, sugarcane, cassava and sesame. Livestock: The majority of indigenous communities are pastoralists with an estimated eight million cattle. Additionally, there are millions of poultry, goats, pigs, horses, donkeys, sheep and other animals. Fisheries: Despite huge water bodies in South Sudan, commercial fishing remains largely unexploited. Fish species include Nile perch, tilapia, catfish, mudfish, lungfish, moon fish (opah) and electric fish. Forestry: Natural forests and woodlands cover 29 per cent of the total land area of South Sudan. Currently, commercial exploitation is limited only to teak, natural mahogany and gum Arabic. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka.

Industry: Currently, the largest manufacturing plant is Southern Sudan Beverages Ltd, which produces beer and soft drinks. Manufacturing sectors, including sugar, textile, cement, fruit, vegetables and timber, were wiped out during the war. The Ministry of Commerce and Industry has prioritized agro-based industrialization, with a focus on fruit processing, cereal processing and production of livestock commodities.


©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.




urrent Ministry of Roads and Transport policies focus on regulation, strategy development and capacity building among stakeholders involved in roads development, offering feasibility studies, technical assessment and surveys.

Roads: Except for a few urban centres such as Juba,Yambio, Wau, Malakal and Yei, where

road infrastructure has undergone extensive rehabilitation in the Comprehensive Peace Agreement era, most roads in the country are being built from scratch. So far, a total of 6,881 kilometres of roads have been built. Bridges: To date, 110 bridges have been constructed or rehabilitated all over the country. Rail: Plans to extend the railway linking north and south, which currently reaches Wau, to Juba and neighbouring countries are underway. Air: About 15 local and international airlines operate in South Sudan. There is one international airport in Juba handling over 80 flights a day. All flights operate during the day. A passenger terminal is currently under construction. There are also plans to extend the runway and install lights to enable landing and takeoff at night. All state capitals have airports and airstrips. Water: Three ports – Mangala (Central Equatoria State), Diam Diam (Jonglei State) and Shambe (Lakes State) on the White Nile – have been upgraded. The Ministry of Roads and Transport is also planning to dredge rivers to facilitate smooth and safe movement of vessels. Juba port is also earmarked for expansion. There are also plans to install navigation facilities in the Bor-Shambe sudds (swamps). Passenger and cargo services will be launched soon. The Port Management Association of Eastern and Southern Africa, of which South Sudan is SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka.

a member, is organizing training for the ministry’s staff at the Bandari College in Mombasa, Kenya. Telecommunication: This has been the fastest growing sector. MTN, Zain, Sudani and Vivacell provide mobile telephony and data services in the country. Liberalization and competition in the sector has led to the provision of high quality, affordable services to more people.


ŠMinistry of Information.




here are about seven national parks and 12 game reserves in South Sudan. Recent surveys by the government in partnership with the Wildlife Conservation Society reveal that these parks and reserves have diverse wildlife species. They were inaccessible to human populations during the civil war and are today inhabited by large populations of kob, hartebeests, bongo and topis, giant and red river hogs, elephants, buffaloes, giraffes, chimpanzees and forest monkeys, hippos, hyenas, gazelles, zebras, ostriches and lions. ŠMinistry of Information.

In 2011, the Ministry of Wildlife and Tourism plans to develop and review policies and laws to regulate wildlife conservation in the country, develop management plans for protected areas and sensitize the public on conservation. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation


ŠUNMIS/Isaac Gideon.




he mass media environment is liberal. The right of expression is guaranteed in the constitution. The Ministry of Information, in partnership with sector stakeholders, has drafted a media bill (soon to be enacted) to regulate the sector. In the pursuit of its commitment to facilitate the free flow of information, the ministry has established the Public Information Centre, Government Printing Press and News Agency of South Sudan.

Television: South Sudan Television and Ebony. Radio: Over 25 public, community and private radio stations have been licensed. They

include South Sudan Radio, Sudan Radio Services, Radio Miraya, Liberty, Capital, Junobna, Bakhita, and Sault Al-Mahaba. In addition, state information and communication ministries run FM stations in Torit,Yambio, Rumbek, Bor, Bentiu and Aweil. Newspapers: The Citizen, Juba Post, The People’s Voice, South Sudan Today, The Pioneer, The Independent, Southern Eye, Al Masair, South Sudan Post, Sudan Tribune, Al Esteglal, Al Tayar, Jeres al-Huria and Khartoum Monitor. Magazines: Southern Eye, Southern Sudan Post, Gurtong Focus.


©Ministry of Information.




iven that South Sudan is a new country, vast investment opportunities abound in sectors like road and structural construction, housing, telecommunication, manufacturing pharmaceuticals, agriculture, power generation, mining, education, tourism and fisheries. The government has taken specific steps to nurture an environment conducive to investment. These include the establishment of institutions like the Ministry of Investment and South Sudan Investment Services as well as development of investment laws. The investment laws provide attractive fiscal regimes, protection of industrial and intellectual property, credible guarantee of legal security, repatriation of profits and dividends, customs duties exemptions and reduced bureaucracy. In February 2011, the government also launched a Private Sector Development programme encompassing investment climate reforms, small and medium enterprise development and access to finance. These steps are bearing fruit fast. The “Doing Business in Juba 2011” report compiled by the World Bank and International Finance Corporation indicates that the country’s business environment has improved tremendously. For instance, the report shows that it now takes 15 days for a start-up business to begin operation. This is fast compared to the average 13.8 days in developed countries. The Ministries of Investment as well as Commerce and Industry are working on further legislation, creating more institutions and streamlining business registration. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation




©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

Pre-colonial resistance Colonial resistance The southern policy Juba conference (1947) Torit mutiny Sudan gains independence The Addis Ababa agreement The Sudan People’s Liberation Movement and Army (SPLM/A) Role of religious organizations Some liberation heroes and martyrs



efore the European scramble for Africa, southern Sudan was inhabited by small, medium and large ethnic groups who coexisted harmoniously. The region’s indigenous populations were almost identical to those of today and inhabited the same territories. Reports by 19th century historians and missionaries show that interaction, assimilation and integration of southern Sudanese communities was peaceful. For example, the Azande under the Avongura Dynasty are reported to have assimilated several tribes like the Pambia, Barambu and Gollo. Other tribes such as the Madi and Bongo opposed total assimilation, but such resistance was always non-violent. European invaders on an empire-creation mission first came into the region in search of raw materials and new markets. The Pasha of Egypt, Mohammed Ali of the Ottoman Empire, led the first of these invasions between 1820 and 1821. His Turko-Egyptian forces frequently raided the southern region for slaves, ferrying millions of people into bondage in the Arab world and other regions. In 1885, the Turko-Egyptian reign ended and the Mahdist regime took over until it was defeated in 1898 at the Battle of Omdurman.

Pre-colonial resistance


esistance to foreign domination by southern Sudanese communities dates back to the pre-colonial period, when they fought against invaders and plunderers such as the TurkoEgyptian forces. The first to encounter foreigners were the Nuer, Shilluk and Dinka, who inhabit the north-south border area. The Dinka, the largest ethnic community in the south, occupied the central and border areas of the region. In modern-day South Sudan, they can be found in Jonglei, Unity, Upper Nile, Western Bahr el Ghazal, Northern Bahr el Ghazal, Lakes and Warrap states. In 1827, the Turkish governor of Sennar State, Khurshid Ali Agha, whose headquarters was in Wad Medani, planned to invade Dinka land with a cavalry force from Al Rosaries, using a route running from Al Gallabat to Nasir on the River Sobat in the south. This attack was repulsed by the Dinka, who fought ferociously against the rifles and swords of the Turkish army with traditional weapons like spears, sharpened sticks and clubs. After a humiliating defeat at the hands of the Dinka, Governor Khurshid’s forces regrouped in 1830 and raided the Shilluk, a Nilotic tribe found along the White Nile in current Upper Nile State, which shares a border with the north. The Shilluk warriors also defeated the slave and cattle-raiding Turks, forcing authorities in Cairo to suspend future raids. The Bari of Equatoria was the first interior southern tribe to encounter foreigners. In 1841, the Turkish frigate Captain Selim and Ibrahim Khasef, representative of Ottoman Empire Viceroy SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



in Cairo Mohammed Ali, landed with forces at Gondokoro, located about nine miles north of present-day Juba. Gondokoro itself was a Bari fishing hamlet. The Turks and their Egyptian, northern Sudanese Arab and European allies established a strong base at Gondokoro and began advancing deeper into Bari country to capture able-bodied men, women and children as slaves. Later that year, a Turkish slave trader fired his gun at a Bari youth, killing him instantly. Coupled with growing resentment about the ongoing slave trade, this attack provoked a serious confrontation between the Bari and the Turks, which delayed the Turko-Egyptian expansion programme to the Madi area for two decades. On 16 March 1860, a force consisting of 100 Turks, Egyptians and northern Sudanese Arabs left the Gondokoro base led by Ahmed Wad Al Mek, the son of a chief from Fazughli area near Sennar, for Muruli in the Madi area, south of Gondokoro. The Madi had been aware that it was only a matter of time before foreigners living among the Bari would invade their land. Despite a spirited resistance led by Chief Nyori of the Paluda clan in Iti Arro, the Madi could not match the guns of the expedition forces and lost the battle. Although several invaders were killed, over 100 residents died, including Chief Nyori, while their village was plundered and burned to ashes. The Zande tribe was beyond Turko-Egyptian control, as its land fell within Bahr el Ghazal. At that time, Bahr el Ghazal was controlled by Zubeir wad Rahama Mansour, a northern Sudanese slave dealer from the Arab Jailiyyin tribe of Shendi, north of Khartoum. Mr. Mansour wielded a lot of power in Zande territory because of its distance from Gondokoro in Equatoria. Although the Zande had effectively resisted internal invasion by Bahr el Ghazal tribes, they were subdued by the numerous and well-equipped northern Sudanese invaders. Consequently, the area was heavily slaved by Mr. Mansour and his fellow Arab traders, who maintained hostile armies. He established several enclosures to hold slaves, known in Arabic as dem or zeriba, before their transfer to the slave markets of El Obeid, Omdurman and Khartoum in the north. The biggest of these enclosures was named after Mr. Mansour and is still called Dem Zubeir to date. Zande territory comprised several federal kingdoms spread across modern-day Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan and Central African Republic. Most of these were under princes such as Ezo, Gbudwe, Kippa, Mange, Ndoromo and Wandu, who were sons of King Bazingbi, and their cousin Tomburo. Of these, Gbudwe was the most popular and prosperous, as he built a strong army the slave traders feared, thus protecting his people. Gbudwe defeated traders and Turko-Egyptian forces until he was captured together with King Tomburo in 1882 and imprisoned in Dem Zubeir for two years. They were released in 1884



by the Mahdist regime, which was now reigning in Khartoum. King Gbudwe thereafter led several Zande resistance battles, defeating Belgian troops on Mount Maiwa in 1885, the Ansar expedition in Nzara in 1889 and the French in 1897. Madi Chief and rainmaker Akeri Milla of the Pandikeri clan, Bori, also resisted the invaders. In 1889, the Mahdist forces stationed at Rejaf sent an expedition force in search of slaves and food from Bori. Chief Milla and his subjects put up stiff resistance and forced the invaders to retreat. In 1894, the Dinka from Bor were part of a force commanded by a British officer, Lieutenant Colonel Martyr of the Uganda Protectorate, who defeated Emir Arabi Daffalla, the Mahdist commander for Equatoria, at his stronghold in Bor.

Colonial resistance


n 1898, the Anglo-Egyptian Condominium was established, with both Britain and Egypt taking over the rule of Sudan. Although the northern Sudanese collaborated with the Anglo-Egyptian rule, southern populations resisted. The first target of the new regime was King Gbudwe, but he soundly defeated the Condominium at the Battle of Birikiwe in 1898. Nonetheless, he was captured alive by British troops under the command of Colonel Butenois on 7 February 1905. He died two days later under unclear circumstances. The king was buried in Yambio, Western Equatoria State, where his tomb is now a national monument. The southern Sudanese continued to wage sporadic battles against the colonial government. For instance, the Anyuak of Upper Nile killed 47 soldiers, including five officers from the Condominium, in 1912, while the Aliab Dinka from Yirol’s present-day Awerial County, killed Provincial Governor Chauncey Hugh Stigand in 1919. The Nuer, a large Nilotic tribe found in present-day Unity, Upper Nile and Jonglei states, also resisted British attempts to control them. According to anthropologist and author of The Root Causes of Sudan’s Civil Wars Douglas Johnson, Guek Ngundeng, son of the great Nuer prophet, Ngundeng Bong, led his people against British colonialists, resulting in the assassination of District Commissioner Vere Ferguson in 1927 in Waat, present-day Jonglei state. A fierce military campaign by the British against Mr. Guek began the same year, which witnessed the first plane bombings in southern Sudan. Mr. Guek was killed in the battle, which also saw the destruction of Ngundeng’s Bieh (pyramid) in 1929. With Mr. Ngundeng dead, the Sudanese government confiscated the dang (a ceremonial Nuer stick) before Waat District Commissioner Percy Coriat took it to England as one of his personal souvenirs. (Mr. Johnson bought the dang at a public auction in London and handed it back to the Nuer community in May 2009.) In 1947, the Dinka of Tonj, in current Warrap State, attacked and severely injured a Mr. Wilson, who was their area district commissioner. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



The Southern Policy


ilitary pacification campaigns in the south lasted into the 1920s, as the British struggled to establish their rule in the region. As a result, the Anglo-Egyptian Condominium developed a policy to administer the north and south separately. The “Southern Policy�, as it came to be known, stated that the south was to be developed along African lines with its future pegged ultimately to British East Africa. Political analysts and historians argue that British colonialists paid attention to socio-economic development in the north, while similar responsibilities were left to Christian missionaries in the south. In 1922, the Condominium declared the Closed Districts Ordinance (CDO), which restricted movement between north and south. According to Mr. Johnson, the CDO also aimed to abolish internal slave trading and halt the spread of Islam. It also prohibited southern Sudanese from establishing contacts with any other foreigners, who were similarly proscribed. Sadly, this policy exacerbated the development imbalance between north and south. Mr. Johnson argues that development disparities between the two regions were far greater as a whole by the 1940s than they had been at the end of the Mahdist reign. In 1945, the British changed tactics and began implementing unitary policies for the whole of Sudan, placing southerners under the administration of northern elites. Khartoum Administrative Conference (1946) Although the 1936 Anglo-Egyptian Treaty ended the British occupation of Egypt, it did not resolve the question of Sudan, which was still under the Condominium. In 1946, the Condominium organized an administrative conference in Khartoum to discuss how to govern Sudan at the central and local government levels. Discussions on the unity of the country, the introduction of a legislative assembly and the appointment of an executive council were prominent political issues discussed at the conference. Although southern Sudan was not represented at this conference, northern elites realized that a unified Sudan would remain elusive as long as the south was not involved.



Juba Conference (1947)


n 1947, the Juba Conference, which included both northerners and southerners, was convened to discuss the future of southern Sudan as a follow-up to the Khartoum Administrative Conference held the previous year. Participants had three options to choose from: southern Sudan as a separate entity ruled by the British; the south as an annex to East Africa British Protectorates; or unity with northern Sudan. Participants at the conference included six British senior government officials: Civil Secretary and Conference Chairman James W. Robertson; Upper Nile Governor F.D. Kingdon; Equatoria Governor B.V. Marwood; Director of Establishment G.H. Barker; Assistant Civil Secretary (Councils) M.F.A. Keen; and Bahr el Ghazal Deputy Governor T.R.H. Owen. Also in attendance were five northern Sudanese representatives: Mohamed Saleh al-Shingeiti; Ibrahim Badri; Hassan Ahmed Osman; Dr. Habib Abdalla; and Sheikh Surur Mohamed Ramli. Seven southern Sudanese chiefs also attended. They included Chief Cir Rehan, Chief Gir Kiro, Chief Okuma Bazin, Chief Lolik Lodu, Chief Lopwanya, Chief Tete and Chief Luath Ajak. There were also 10 elites representing southern Sudan: Father Guido Akou; Pastor Andrea Apaya; Kamyangi Ababa; Sergeant Major Philemon Majok; Clement Mboro; Hassan Fartak; James Tombura; Edward Adhok; and Buth Diu.

SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



The terms of reference of the conference were to consider recommendations of the Khartoum Administrative Conference about southern Sudan, discuss the nature and composition of southern Sudanese representation in the proposed legislative assembly, and discuss how to cater for unique needs of southern Sudanese in forthcoming pieces of legislation. The conference was also to discuss whether or not an advisory council for southern Sudan should be set up to deal with the region’s affairs and also become the pool from which southern representatives might be appointed to sit in the assembly. In addition, it was to consider recommendations of the Khartoum Administrative Conference on matters not strictly relevant to the political development of Sudan, which the conference recommended as essential if unification of the Sudanese people was to be achieved. Though some of the southern Sudanese representatives initially staged a spirited fight for separation or federalism, their efforts were betrayed by colleagues who chose to collaborate with northerners, allegedly after being compromised. Two major resolutions were passed by the conference. The first was the formation of the Province Council, making southern Sudan a province of the united Sudan. The alternative was the South Sudan Council, which would have separated the south from the north. The second resolution was the decision to send southern Sudanese representatives with the power to participate fully in deliberations to the national legislative assembly. The significance of the conference is that it formalized the unity of Sudan, albeit through unpopular means. Having been robbed of the opportunity to secede through negotiation, southerners resorted to armed conflict to take charge of their future. As opposed to the earlier sporadic and localized resistance, the liberation struggle took a more organized and “nationalized� form. Thus, the conference not only concretized the resolve of southerners to secede, it unified their efforts in pursuit of the goal.

Torit mutiny


n February 1953, the Anglo-Egyptian Condominium concluded an agreement providing for Sudanese self-government and self-determination.

The pre-independence transitional period began with inauguration of the first parliament in 1954. Several political parties, including the National Unity Party (NUP), UMMA Party (UP), Socialist Republican Party (SRP), Southern Party and Independent Party, as well as independents participated in the first general election of Sudan, held in March 1954.



The NUP won the election and Governor General of the Sudan Sir Robert Howe invited the party leader, Ismail El Azhari, to form a government. Several southern Sudanese were appointed to different roles in the new government. They included Butic Alier, Minister for Animal Resources; Santino Deng Teng, Minister for State; and Redento Onzi Koma, Deputy Speaker in the Senate. Only one southerner, Siricio Iro Wanison, was appointed to the Supreme Commission of the State. The other members - Abdel Fatah El Moghrabi, Mohammed Osman Yasin, Mohammed Ahmed Salih and Dardiri Mohammed Osman - were northerners. After his inauguration, Prime Minister El Azhari toured Juba, Wau and Aweil in southern Sudan. In Juba, he addressed thousands of southerners. However, upon concluding his two-hour speech, the southerners walked out of the meeting, leaving a puzzled prime minister, his entourage and northern administrators. Upon the prime minister’s return, Minister of Interior Ali Abdel Rahaman, who was part of Mr. El Azhari’s entourage, formulated a policy in which all competent southern administrators were ordered to move to the north and northern police as well as prison officers to the south. These changes made northerners in the south, especially traders, become arrogant and abusive towards southerners. In the process of granting independence to Sudan, the civil service and administration were placed increasingly in the hands of northern Sudanese, side-lining southerners from the national government. The failure of the British to ensure equity in power sharing and participation in the government became a cause for chronic mistrust and suspicion between the north and south. In July 1955, Sir Alexander Knox Helm replaced Sir Robert Howe as Governor General of the Sudan. Sir Helm began the Sudanization of the Sudan Defence Force (SDF). In this programme, British troops were to be evacuated from Sudan and the Equatoria Corps, made up predominantly of southerners, was to be disarmed and transferred to the north. On 18 August 1955, members of the Equatoria Corps in Torit, Eastern Equatoria, rebelled against orders to disarm and transfer them. The mutiny left hundreds of northerners and southerners dead. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



Under the command of Lieutenant Renaldo Loleya, mutineers sent a telegram to the British Prime Minister and British troops in Sudan to intervene, but failed to obtain support. On 21 August, Prime Minister El Azhari ordered the mutineers to surrender. Sir Helm, who was then in Britain, cut short his leave and returned to Sudan. On 26 August, Sir Helm sent a warning to mutineers to surrender and promised to guarantee their fair trial. A meeting of representatives of the government and mutineers, including Lieutenant Loleya, agreed that mutineers would surrender and lay down their guns on 30 August in Torit. This mutiny was to be the trigger of a 17-year civil war.

Sudan gains independence


ith the consent of the British and Egyptian governments, Sudan achieved independence on 1 January 1956 under a provisional constitution.

The United States was among the first foreign powers to recognize the new nation. The security situation worsened and political tensions heightened when the independent government dominated by Arab Muslims failed to fulfil promises made to southerners in the 1940s to create a federal system of government. Besides, out of 800 senior posts formerly held by British officials, only three junior posts of assistant district commissioners (ADC) were given to southerners - Clement Mboro, Lewis Bay and Barnaba Toroyo Kisinga. Anya-Nya movement Despite the suppression of the Torit mutineers, armed groups began to organize themselves across southern Sudan. Liberation struggle leaders such as King Omiluk Ohide and Okiya Latada of Torit District began their attacks as early as 1957. In March 1957, a government convoy patrolling the Sudan-Uganda border was ambushed, leaving five dead, including three chiefs, and others seriously wounded. Mr. Latada, a veteran Equatoria Corps soldier, also single-handedly carried out hit and run operations around Loffi Hills in Ikotos sub-district of Torit.



Such incidents intensified and spread across the south, giving rise to the Anya-Nya liberation movement, whose principal objective was the separation of southern from northern Sudan so that the south could be a sovereign African nation. Motivations for the movement were the exploitation, marginalization and oppression of southerners, brought about by the divide and rule colonial policy. Another stimulus was the 1954-1958 Sudanization Policy that declared Arabization and Islamization of the whole of southern Sudan, resulting in the expulsion of foreign missionaries from the region in February 1964. In the early 1960s, the war resulted in the deaths of about 500,000 people, while hundreds of thousands more hid in forests and others escaped to refugee camps in neighbouring countries. Most of the southern elites and political leaders went into exile and formed political parties to champion the rights of southerners. The first political party was the Sudan African Closed District National Union (SACDNU). It was formed in 1961 based on the 1956 census results, which broke down Sudan’s population into Sudanese Africans, 60%, Arabs, 30% and others, 10%. In July 1963, SACDNU decided to drop “Closed District” from the name, changing it to the Sudan African National Union (SANU), to make the party more inclusive of African brothers and sisters in northern Sudan. In the same year, the Sudanese Christian Association in East Africa (SCAEA) was established in Kenya, Tanganyika and Uganda. Its task was to raise funds from southern Sudanese in this region to support the liberation movement. The leaders of the movement toured African, European and American countries to raise funds and create awareness of the political stalemate in Sudan since the beginning of self-governance. In addition, the movement had drafted many memoranda to the UN and Organization of African Unity spelling out SANU’s policies. These were the independence of southern Sudan and treatment equal to Angola, Mozambique and South Africa, whose liberation struggles the world had recognized. In 1963, on the eighth anniversary of the Torit mutiny, ex-soldiers of the former Equatoria Corps released from prison in the north agreed to start an offensive from different locations and became freedom fighters. Freedom fighters from Torit and Kapoeta were on standby at Parajok and Lobone on the SudanUganda border; those in Yei, Maridi and Yambio were stationed along the Sudan, Zaire and SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



Central African Republic borders; and those in Upper Nile were on the Sudan-Ethiopia border. On 30 July 1963, Joseph Oduho Aworu, President of the SANU, convened a Council of Ministers meeting. The purpose of the meeting was to name the armed wing of the liberation struggle. The meeting was attended by Father Saturnino Lohure (chairman’s representative), Paterno Athari, Joseph Lagu Yanga (military specialist), George Kwainai Akumbek (Secretary for Information), George Lomoro Muras (Secretary for Education), Pankrasio Ocheng (Secretary for Finance) and Severino Fuli Boki (Secretary for Administration). Father Lohure presented two names - Southern Sudan Liberation Army (SSLA) and Azania Liberation Army (ALA). The second name was based on the belief, according to Father Lohure, that there would be a country called “Azania” in central, eastern and southern Africa, of which southern Sudan would become a part. Mr. Oduho urged participants to suggest more names with clear African connotations, like the Mau-Mau that liberated Kenya. He then asked if anybody in the meeting could explain the meaning of anya-nya. Mr. Boki, a Madi, said it was a Madi word derived from inyi-nya or inyanya and mispronounced by foreigners as anya-nya. He added that anya-nya was deadly venom extracted from snakes. The chairperson of the meeting then asked participants what name they would give to the armed wing of the struggle and they unanimously agreed it would be Anya-Nya. On 31 July 1963, Anya-Nya, the armed wing of the struggle, was officially launched with General Joseph Lagu Yanga as its leader. The force began operations immediately and had spread throughout southern Sudan by early 1964. In 1966, the liberation movement formed an interim government called Nile Provisional



Government (NPG). The NPG performed all the roles of government, including maintaining law and order as well as collecting taxes in “liberated� areas. It remained the face of the southern Sudan liberation struggle until 1967. Several leadership wrangles bedevilled the NPG, prompting General Lagu to take over in 1967. He united a number of independent liberation groups under the banner of a new party called the Southern Sudan Liberation Movement (SSLM). He became the chairperson of the SSLM and commander-in-chief of the Anya-Nya in 1968.

The Addis Ababa Agreement


olitically, Sudan had a turbulent beginning after independence, punctuated by several coups. Successive governments attempted to stamp out various liberation movements in the south, but without any significant success. Neither threats nor blandishments succeeded in curbing rebel fighters. Government functionaries attempted to restore normalcy in the region, but this too flopped miserably. The situation caused much anxiety among leaders. On 25 May 1969, Colonel Jafaar Nimeiry, then commander of the Khartoum garrison, seized power through a coup supported by the Sudanese Communist Party. Faced with several challenges in the north, President Nimeiry decided to pacify the south to allow him time and space to deal with political issues in the north. This move was perhaps also motivated by the need for President Nimeiry to win more friends from the south, whom he hoped to turn to in times of need. On 9 June 1969, President Nimeiry made a policy statement recognizing the historical and cultural differences between northern and southern Sudan. He also recognized the right of southern people to develop their own culture and traditions as well as their right to selfgovernment. He admitted that a military solution to the problem of the south had failed and was not tenable. President Nimeiry promised to give southern Sudan regional autonomy. He also pledged better treatment of southerners by the army. By the late 1960s, General Lagu had emerged as the undisputed leader of the rebel armed movement, Anya-Nya, as well as its political wing, SSLM. He managed to obtain arms donations from Israel and intensified the liberation war. President Nimeiry decided to negotiate a peaceful solution to issues raised by the southern Sudanese. Negotiations began earnestly in 1970 and eventually led to the signing of the Addis Ababa Agreement in 1972, ending the first civil war (1955-1972). SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



It is estimated that between 750,000 and 1,500,000 southern Sudanese died during the AnyaNya war. The Addis Ababa Agreement was mediated by Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia, the All African Council of Churches and six other African countries. It granted southern Sudan regional autonomy with its own legislature, executive and judiciary; equality of all religions; recognition of English as a major language in the south; and amnesty for insurgents. The accord also made provisions for interim security arrangements, through which about 6,000 Anya-Nya guerrillas were absorbed into the national army and another 4,000 into the police and prisons services. It did not, however, grant southerners the independence they had fought for. Following the Agreement, the international community and Sudanese government promised financial and developmental assistance to the south. The “Relief and Resettlement Conference” in 1972 put forth project proposals for the development of forests, livestock, agriculture, town planning, health and educational services in southern Sudan. Although bridges were soon erected over the White Nile in Juba and the River Jur, most projects failed to materialize. Relative peace followed the signing of the Agreement, although this was punctuated by instances of isolated mutinies by disgruntled former Anya-Nya soldiers and a growing realization by most southerners that the nascent peace would not last. Pundits have argued that northerners worked to undermine the Addis Ababa Agreement, while southerners, on the other hand, prepared for war. In July 1976, Colonel Nimeiry survived a coup attempt on his eight-year regime by former Finance Minister Hussein al-Hindi and former Prime Minister Sadik al-Mahdi, who were both in exile at the time. About 2,000 heavily armed civilians infiltrated Khartoum and Omdurman, causing much destruction and immobilizing Sudan’s air force on the ground. Retribution was quick and severe. Ninety-eight rebels were executed for their part in the plot, while several hundred were imprisoned. Reportedly, southern Sudanese soldiers played a big role in foiling the coup. Sensing the growing influence of Mr. al-Mahdi and Hassan al-Tourabi, leader of the Muslim Brothers, President Nimeiry sought reconciliation with his rivals in the north. This change of heart culminated in a meeting between the three leaders at Port Sudan in 1977. Al-Mahdi and al-Tourabi advocated for Islamization of Sudan and opposed regional autonomy of the south, as was stipulated in the Addis Ababa Agreement. Following this meeting, President



Nimeiry began breaching the Agreement. He divided the south into three politically weak regions, attempted to “northernize” the army in the south by transferring southerners to the north and vice versa, and tried to annex oil fields from the south to the north. The north continued its Islamization and Arabization project of the country unabated. Southerners felt that President Nimeiry was trying to erode whatever gains they had achieved through the Agreement. The accord itself failed to satisfy southern aspirations, as it neither put them at the centre of power in parity with the north nor allowed them the right to selfdetermination In September 1983, President Nimeiry declared Islamic Sharia Law as the supreme law over all of Sudan. With that, the Addis Ababa Agreement collapsed. Several underground insurrections began to mobilize southerners and they resumed their liberation struggle.

The Sudan People’s Liberation Movement and Army (SPLM/A)


n 1983, southern Sudanese troops in Bor, Jonglei State, were ordered to transfer to the north. A section of the troops thought they were going to the north for onward transfer to the Middle East to take part in the Iran-Iraq war. They refused to obey the transfer orders or to allow northern troops, who were to take over from them, entry to the barracks. Northern troops attacked the garrison and fighting broke out on 16 May 1983. After a heavy exchange of fire, the southern troops left with their arms. Forces at Pachella and Ayod also mutinied in support of their colleagues in Bor. Dr. John Garang de Mabior, then a colonel in the national army, was on holiday in Bor at the time. He joined the mutineers. This group then moved to Ethiopia and formed the nucleus of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement and Army (SPLM/A) in July 1983. It was later joined by former AnyaNya fighters, who had regrouped in the late 1970s as Anya-Nya II, and other rebel groups in the south. Ordinary citizens, especially youth, volunteered and joined the SPLM/A in Ethiopia. The SPLA began by attacking small police and army outposts while consolidating its troops and supplies. The rebel group won sympathy and support from civilian populations. The troops fought gallantly and humiliated government forces. Defeats of the national army at the hands of the SPLA partially led to the ouster of President Nimeiry by General Abdul Rahman Siwar el-Dahab in a 1985 coup. By 1989, the SPLA was controlling more than three-quarters of southern territory, including the three provincial headquarters of Juba, Wau and Malakal, as well as much of the border with Ethiopia. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



However, 1991 was a dark year for the SPLM/A. First, an internal split weakened the movement and second, one of its ardent supporters, Ethiopian President Mengistu Haile Mariam was deposed. Mr. Mengistu had provided material support and a safe haven in Ethiopia to the SPLM/A. Additionally, in December 1991, Iranian President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani visited Khartoum and declared the war between the government and the south a jihad. Declaration of the jihad galvanized public support for the government. The Khartoum regime planned and executed a major offensive in March 1992, which overwhelmed the SPLA, forcing it to retreat. By July 1992, the SPLA had been pushed back and government forces had recaptured Torit. Nonetheless, fierce guerrilla war continued. In Khartoum, the government drove away nearly half a million southern Sudanese refugees from the capital into open desert. It also purged the civil service, judiciary and teaching profession of non-Muslims. The international community accused the government of sponsoring terrorism and committing serious human rights violations, including forced Islamization and slavery. In the 1990s, several splinter groups in the south signed agreements with the government. However, all agreements, including the Frankfurt Agreement of 1992 and the Khartoum Peace Agreement of 1997, were dishonoured. In 1998, the United States bombed a factory in Khartoum and it became evident to the government that it needed to seek peace. A federal constitution was passed the same year after it dawned on ruling elites in Khartoum that it was impossible to wipe out the SPLM/A. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, both sides began exchanging olive branches. Peace negotiations made substantial progress in 2003 and 2004, leading to the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) in 2005.



Role of religious organizations Traditional prophets

Religion played a big role in the southern Sudanese liberation struggle. Traditional seers and prophets, believed to be possessed by divine spirits, had great influence on the people. Prophets such as Ngundeng of the Nuer rallied the people through oracles and prophecies. They also blessed the warriors before military engagements. Though the influence of prophets faded gradually, the impact of their prophecies, particularly on the future of southern Sudan, was significant.

Christian churches

Before the first civil war in 1955, the Catholic Church was involved in some underground resistance. Father Saturnino Lohure, among other church leaders, was involved in actual fighting. In rebel areas, church leaders and congregants were also involved in direct combat. Prior to 1964, when the Government of Sudan expelled missionaries from the south, the church played a major role in education through missionary schools. The majority of southern Sudanese leaders and senior government officials were educated in these schools. Threatened by the growth of Christianity and education in the south, the northern government enacted the Missionary Societies Act in 1962 to limit the practice and propagation of nonMuslim religions, with the hope of encouraging Islamization. It also promoted the use of Arabic, ostensibly to counter the spread of Christianity. In 1965, with the missionaries gone, students started joining and strengthening the Anya-Nya movement and there was great revival as well as strengthening of the church.Young people who fled to neighbouring countries also received training in East Africa through churches there. In refugee camps like Gulu, West Nile and Moyo in northern Uganda, the church was involved in humanitarian and relief work. The church also assisted with the provision of health and educational facilities, especially to refugees in Gulu. Lobbying efforts of the All Africa Conference of Churches made a huge contribution to negotiations and signing of the Addis Ababa Agreement. After the Agreement collapsed and war broke out under the SPLM, the church became a place of refuge for people during attacks, even rescuing people arrested and placed in the “White House�- a detention centre in Juba synonymous with death. Church leaders often brought the plight of victims of such arrests to the attention of international media, thus putting pressure on the government to release them. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



The church also ran a well-established chaplaincy programme in the SPLA. Chaplains prayed for and encouraged soldiers. Later on, an institute was established in Yei under Michael Howard, who was from Malawi, to train chaplains from across the country. The church also initiated the Kajiko 1 Dialogue held in 1987 at the town of Kajiko near Yei, which was aimed at bringing the church and SPLM together. The church used the forum to intervene on behalf of civilians against excesses of soldiers during the war. A church delegation also met Dr. John Garang Mabior to urge him to reconcile and enter into peace talks with the Khartoum government. The church delegation also went to Khartoum to call for peace talks with the SPLM and asked for the free movement of bishops and other church leaders. The latter was granted. The intermediation role played by the church during this period led to the genesis of talks that culminated in the signing of the CPA in 2005. The Sudan Council of Churches and the New Sudan Council of Churches represented the church. The two organizations, which have since merged, represented the national government and rebel-held areas respectively.

Islamic Council

Even though southern Sudanese had historical resentment for Muslim Arabs, they did not have a problem with Islam per se. Indeed, several Muslim leaders participated in various stages of the liberation struggle. The SPLM/A launched the New Sudan Islamic Council on 18 September 1991. The council was headed by a commander, el Tahir Abdalla Bior Ajak, and worked hand-in-hand with the New Sudan Council of Churches and the Sudan Rehabilitation and Relief Agency (SRRA) to provide humanitarian and spiritual support to soldiers and civilians. Besides, several Muslims were in SPLM/A ranks.

Some liberation heroes and martyrs Abel Alier Wal Kwai, a Dinka from Bor, is a graduate of Rumbek Secondary School and University of Khartoum Faculty of Law. He has held various ministerial positions in the government, including president of the High Executive Council in Southern Sudan and vicepresident of the Republic of Sudan following the 1972 Addis Ababa Agreement. He also chaired the commission that investigated the plane crash which took the life of Dr. John Garang Mabior. During the historic April 2010 general elections in Sudan, Mr. Alier was chairperson of the National Elections Commission.



Ager Gum Akol, born around 1938, was a Dinka Anya-Nya and SPLA commander from Rumbek who defied traditional norms and picked up arms to fight for southern liberation, joining the Anya-Nya movement in 1964. Later she was absorbed by the Prison Service after the Addis Ababa Agreement in 1972. She joined the SPLA in 1984 and rose to the rank of commander. One of Ms. Gum’s major responsibilities was the coordination of a team of female intelligence officers who subtly gathered security information and smuggled weapons from towns to front lines. She was a role model for women in the struggle and remained patriotic in spite of the challenges. She was also a renowned composer of freedom songs. Ms. Gum was a supporter of girls’ education, even though she had not gone to school herself. She died around 2001-2002 in Rumbek. Ager Gum Mixed Basic School in Rumbek Central County was named in her memory. Aggrey Jaden Lado was a Pojulu from Loka in Central Equatoria State. He attended Nugent Intermediate School in Loka and Nabumali Secondary School in Uganda. He was among the first southerners to study at Gordon Memorial College, now the University of Khartoum. After graduating in 1952, he joined the government and served as an inspector in Darfur, Torit, Juba and Malakal. Mr. Jaden was allegedly demoted while serving in Malakal for refusing to participate in independence celebrations held on 1 January 1956. He left Sudan in 1957 to organize antigovernment movements in exile, returning to Sudan in 1975 and retiring from politics. He died in 1986. Andrea Apaya, a Muru from Mundri, was a graduate of Bishop Gwenye College and the first pastor in Muru area. He participated in the 1947 Juba Conference and opposed a proposal by participants from the north that learning the Arabic language should be mandatory in all schools in the south. He died in 1966. Clement Mboro was a Ndogo from Bahr el Ghazal who studied at Bussere Primary School in Wau. He participated in the 1947 Juba Conference before joining politics in 1954. He was chairman of the Repatriation, Relief and Resettlement Commission in Juba during the period 1972-1973 and was behind repatriation of hundreds of thousands of southern Sudanese refugees after the 1972 Addis Ababa Agreement. He died in 2007. Eliaba James Surur is a Pojulu from Central Equatoria State and a graduate of Juba Training College. He was a secondary school teacher before becoming a politician, founding and chairing the Union of Sudan African Parties 2 (USAP-2). He fought during the first and second civil wars in southern Sudan with the Anya-Nya movement and the SPLM/A. Mr. Surur dissolved his party and merged it with the SPLM on 19 July 2010. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



Elijah Lupe Waiwai, a Kakwa, studied at Nugent Intermediate School in Loka, Central Equatoria State, and Nabumali Secondary School in Uganda. He joined the Police College and graduated as a second lieutenant officer in 1955, later joining the civil service and working as assistant district commissioner. Mr. Lupe joined politics and was elected to represent Yei in the Second Parliament in 1957. When party politics were banned following the coup led by General Ibrahim Aboud in November 1958, he joined the Anya-Nya movement. Following the 1972 Addis Ababa Agreement, he served as a minister in the regional government until his death in 1975. Gordon Muortat-Mayen was the son of a sub-chief of the Agar Dinka in Bahr el Ghazal. He attended Akot Primary School in Rumbek, Lakes State, and Nugent Intermediate School in Loka, Central Equatoria State. He joined the Omdurman Police College and graduated as a police inspector in 1951, rising to the rank of chief inspector of police before being appointed an assistant district commissioner in 1957. Mr. Muortat-Mayen became a member of the Southern Front in 1965 and left the country in 1967 to join the rebel movement in exile. He condemned the Addis Ababa Agreement as a “sell-out” and predicted that it would not last, refusing to participate in the regional government formed thereafter and continuing to live in exile. He later joined the SPLM/A and became a member of the National Liberation Council as well as an advisor to Dr. John Garang de Mabior. After the signing of the CPA, he served as a member of the Southern Sudan Legislative Assembly. Mr. Muortat-Mayen died in 2008 and was laid to rest in Rumbek’s Freedom Square. John Garang de Mabior (Dr.) was the first president of the Government of Southern Sudan. He studied at Tonj and Bussere schools before joining Rumbek Secondary School, where his stay was cut short by a strike. He left for Tanzania where he completed his secondary school education at Magamba Secondary School. Dr. Garang joined Anya-Nya at age seventeen, but seeing his academic prowess, the commanders urged him to pursue an education. In 1969, he went to Grinnell College in Iowa, United States, and obtained a BA in Economics. In 1971, he rejoined the Anya-Nya movement and was absorbed into the national army after the Addis Ababa Agreement. He left Sudan to pursue further education, graduating with a PhD in Economics from Iowa State University in 1981. His love for his motherland and dream of its development was demonstrated in his doctoral thesis, entitled: Aspects for development in Southern Sudan. In 1983, Dr. Garang, now a colonel, defected from the national army to lead the SPLM/A. He led the movement gallantly through the second Sudanese civil war until January 2005, when the north and south signed the CPA that ended the two-decade war. Dr. Garang then became the First Vice-President of Sudan and first President of the Government of Southern Sudan. He



died in a helicopter crash on 30 July 2005 on his way back to Southern Sudan from a meeting in Uganda. Joseph Garang Ukelo was a Jur from Bahr el Ghazal. He attended Rumbek Secondary School and graduated from University of Khartoum Faculty of Law. He was the first cabinet minister for South Sudan Affairs in Colonel Jaafar Nimeiry’s (Sudanese president 1969 – 1985) government. He was executed in 1971 after a failed coup against President Nimeiry’s government. Joseph James Tombura, a Zande from Western Equatoria, was a graduate of Khartoum Technical Institute. He participated in the 1947 Juba Conference and held several political posts, including member of parliament, minister in the regional government and president of the High Executive Council. He also served a stint as governor of greater Equatoria. Joseph Lagu Yanga, a Madi, was born in 1931 to Yakobo Yanga, a primary school teacher and helper to missionary Archibald Shaw. He attended Nugent Intermediate School in Loka, Central Equatoria State, and Rumbek Secondary School before joining Sudan Military College in Omdurman. He later served in the Sudanese army but left in 1963 to lead the Anya-Nya armed movement. Mr. Lagu became chairperson of the Southern Sudan Liberation Movement and commanderin-chief of Anya-Nya in 1968. He negotiated and signed the Addis Ababa Agreement with President Nimeiry and was promoted to the rank of lieutenant general in 1976. He became president of the High Executive Council in 1978. Though retired from active politics, he currently serves as an advisor to Government of Southern Sudan President Salva Kiir Mayardit. Joseph Oduho Aworu was a Lotuko born in 1927 in Lobira, Eastern Equatoria. He received his early education in Catholic mission schools and later became a pioneer student of Rumbek Secondary School. He then became a teacher, joining politics in the early 1950s. In 1953, he protested the exclusion of southern Sudanese in negotiations between Sudan and Egypt about Sudan’s independence. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



He was arrested after the 1955 Torit mutiny and sentenced to death, but was released in a general amnesty in 1956. Mr. Oduho was elected to parliament in 1957 but went into exile following the 1958 coup by the Sudanese army, which overthrew Abdullah Khalil’s government. Together with other prominent southern Sudanese in exile, he founded the Sudan African National Union (SANU) in 1962. Mr. Oduho participated in guerrilla movements fighting for the liberation of southern Sudan. He joined the regional government after the Addis Ababa Agreement and served in various ministries. He was arrested in 1975, allegedly for plotting southern secession, but was released in 1976. At the start of the second civil war in 1983, Mr. Oduho joined other southern leaders in the bush and founded the SPLM/A. He remained in the movement until his death in 1993. Kerubino Kwanyin Bol was a Nuer who served as an officer in the Anya-Nya movement, but was later incorporated into the Sudanese army after the Addis Ababa Agreement in 1972. He was commander of Battalion 105 in Bor that mutinied in 1983, leading to the formation of the SPLM/A. He broke away from the SPLM/A in 1993, but rejoined the movement in 1998. Mr. Kwanyin died in 1999. Lewis Bay, a Ndogo from Bahr el Ghazal, was a teacher at Bussere Intermediate School in Wau before going to then Gordon Memorial College, now University of Khartoum, to pursue a course in public administration. He participated in the Juba Conference of 1947 and later became a district commissioner in Upper Nile. Luigi Adwok Bong, a Shilluk from Upper Nile, went to Bussere Intermediate School in Wau and Rumbek Secondary School before proceeding to Bakht er-Ruda Teacher Training College near Khartoum. After graduation, he taught for several years, rising to the position of head teacher. Mr. Adwok later joined politics and became a member of parliament. At the peak of his career, he became a member of the Sovereignty Council of Sudan, whose participants acted as heads of state on a rotational basis. Thus, he became the first southerner to be “president” of Sudan in 1964. He later served as commissioner of Upper Nile in 1970 and president of the Southern Front as well as regional minister of education in 1972. He died in 2010. Bishop Paride Taban, a Madi of Opari in Eastern Equatoria, was born in 1936. He was ordained as a priest in 1964 at the age of 28. He was appointed the auxiliary bishop of Juba in 1980 and later in 1983 appointed as the first bishop of the Diocese of Torit. He retired in 2004 and has since been engaged in peace building initiatives.



Samuel Abu John was a Zande from Yambio and a graduate of Rumbek Secondary School as well as Omdurman Military College. He joined the Anya-Nya movement but was absorbed into the national army and promoted to colonel after the Addis Ababa Agreement. He later joined the SPLM/A. He also served as governor of Western Equatoria. Samuel Aru Bol, a Dinka and graduate of Rumbek Secondary School, was leader of the 1953 school strike. He held the position of lieutenant colonel of police. He was a member of the Sudan African National Union (SANU) but never went into exile. Mr. Bol served as a member of parliament during President Nimeiry’s regime (1969-1985), later forming the Southern Sudanese Political Association (SSPA) in 1986 after President Nimeiry was deposed. He merged his party with other southern Sudanese parties and formed the Union of Sudanese African Parties (USAP) in 1987. He was one of the signatories of the 1997 Khartoum Peace Agreement between the Government of Sudan and several southern Sudanese political groups. Chief Samuel Lolik Ladu was a Lokoya traditional chief and 3rd class magistrate. He is reputed to have dealt effectively with inter and intra-tribal conflicts in the south. He became head of the Judiciary during the Anya-Nya war of liberation. Father Saturnino Lohure, a Lotuko Catholic priest and politician, was born in 1921 in Loronyo village, north of Torit in Eastern Equatoria. He studied theology and philosophy at a seminary in Gulu, northern Uganda, and was ordained as priest in 1946. He served in Kapoeta and Lirya before being elected to parliament in 1957. Father Lohure was the first southern Sudanese to contest for the position of prime minister against Ismail el Azhari in 1957. Though he lost, he demonstrated that southerners were capable of national leadership. When Ibrahim Aboud dissolved Sudan’s parliament in November 1958, Father Lohure retreated to the south and later went into exile in Uganda, where he helped organize the liberation movement. Reportedly a prolific writer, he was assassinated on 22 January 1967 and buried in northern Uganda. His body was exhumed and reburied in Torit in January 2009. Walter Kunjok Ayoker, a Shilluk from Tonga area, studied at Kampala Secondary School in Uganda. He later obtained a PhD in Political Science from Oxford University in the United Kingdom. He was a lecturer at the University of Khartoum and a founder of the Sudan African Congress (SAC). He once served as minister for labour but resigned and went into exile to join the liberation movement.

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Wani Lou Morjan was a Madi liberation fighter. He was arrested in 1963 and accused of being a member of an unlawful group, of which his son-in-law Peter Mogga Kobaa, an ex-soldier, was allegedly a member. When he was released, he organized a group of about 35 young and elderly men armed with traditional weapons and one World War I era rifle (locally known as tasi) to fight against injustices of Arabization in the south. Though a small group, they successfully attacked government officers, installations and vehicles around Torit. He was killed in 1964 during a clash between his group and government forces led by Moheidin al-Faki. William Deng Nhial, a Dinka from Tonj, was a graduate of Rumbek Secondary School. He joined the civil service and rose to the position of assistant district commissioner in Kapoeta. He was a founding member of the Sudan African National Union (SANU) and served as its secretary general. He returned to Sudan in 1965 and was allegedly assassinated by the government of Mohamed Ahmed Mahgoub in June 1968.



Reign of Peace


Main Provisions Of The CPA Southern Sudan referendum Results of southern Sudan referendum

ŠMinistry of Information.

Government of southern Sudan (GOSS)

ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka.

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he Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) ended a two-decade civil war between northern and southern Sudan.

The set of agreements was negotiated by Vice-President of the Government of Sudan Ali Osman Mohammed Taha and SPLM/A Chairman Dr. John Garang de Mabior, and chaperoned by the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD). It was signed by the parties on 9 January 2005 in Kenya. Witnesses at the signing were President Mwai Kibaki (Kenya), President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni (Uganda), Ahmed Aboul Gheit (Egypt), Senator Alfredo Mantica (Italy), Fred Racke (Netherlands), Hilde Johnson (Norway), Hilary Benn (United Kingdom and Northern Ireland) and Colin Powell (United States). Attending from the African Union, European Union League of Arab States and United Nations were Alpha Oumar Konare, Charles Goerens, Amre Moussa and Jan Pronk, respectively. The CPA was unique in two respects: 1) It was drawn up for one country with two systems of governance; the government in the north operated under Sharia law, while the one in the south was secular. 2) Each party was allowed to maintain its own army in addition to a third army known as Joint Integrated Units (JIUs).


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Main provisions of the CPA Self-determination

Signed in Machakos, Kenya, in July 2002, the Machakos Protocol provided that Southern Sudan would hold an internationally monitored referendum at the end of a six-year interim period. Additionally, to begin during the transitional period six months after the signing of the CPA, the south was to be exempted from Sharia law.

Security arrangements

©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

In this protocol, signed in September 2003, the two parties agreed to an internationally monitored cease-fire. JIUs consisting of equal numbers from the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) were formed. Both SAF and SPLA were to remain separate but were to be considered and treated equally as Sudan’s National Armed Forces (SNAF). A Joint Defence Board would coordinate the two forces and command the JIUs.


In addition to creating mechanisms to manage oil, land and natural resources, this protocol, signed in January 2004, provided for a dual banking system - Islamic in the north and conventional in the south. It also tackled the sharing of non-oil revenue, currency and monetary policies. Additionally, it called for the establishment of reconstruction and development funds to rebuild the south. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation


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Signed in May 2004, this protocol made provisions for the SPLM and the National Congress Party (NCP) in the north to form a Government of National Unity (GoNU) with a decentralized system of administration. The SPLM was also to set up a separate semi-autonomous administration in the south. Dr. Garang was to become first vice-president in the GoNU and president of the semi-autonomous Government of Southern Sudan (GoSS). A population census was to be held in 2006 and general elections at all levels of government were to be held at the end of 2008. English and Arabic were to be the official languages in the country and the people of Southern Sudan were to make up 30 per cent of the country’s post-conflict civil service.

Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile states

ŠUNMIS/Stuart Price.

Two protocols regarding these states were signed in May 2004. The disputed regions were to have their own governments headed by a governor directly elected by the registered voters. The two states would hold popular consultations to determine how the people of Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile felt about implementation of the CPA in their respective areas.


©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

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A provision for the contested Abyei region was signed in May 2004. The oil-rich area was given special status under the Presidency and the administration of a local executive council elected by the residents of Abyei. Its residents were to be citizens of both Western Kordofan (north) and Warrap (south) states. In a separate ballot, the residents of Abyei, irrespective of the results of the southern referendum, would determine if Abyei would maintain its special administrative status in the north or become part of Warrap in the south. In fulfilment of some of the CPA’s provisions , a population census was conducted in 2008. The results showed that Sudan had a population of 39.15 million people, of which 8.26 million were Southern Sudanese. Even though the results were contested by southerners, the census remains the latest official estimation of Sudan’s population. General elections were held in April 2010, one year behind schedule. Various candidates and parties competed for diverse elective positions at the national, regional and state levels. The SPLM withdrew its national presidential candidate,Yassir Arman, alleging irregularities in the electoral process, but won a huge majority of votes in the south. SPLM Chairman General Salva Kiir Mayardit was elected president of the GoSS with a comfortable majority. The party also won nine gubernatorial seats. Only Western Equatorians elected an independent candidate as governor.

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©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

CHAPTER 3. Reign of Peace

During the interim period, the unity of Sudan was to be made attractive to the people of Southern Sudan. However, as stipulated in the CPA, at the end of the six years southerners would take part in a selfdetermination referendum on 9 January 2011. The referendum was organized by the Southern Sudan Referendum Commission (SSRC), based in Khartoum, in collaboration with the Southern Sudan Referendum Bureau (SSRB), which was based in Juba. Voting took place between 9 and 15 January 2011 all over Southern Sudan and North Sudan. “Out-of-countryvoting” (OCV) was also conducted in select countries in the diaspora (Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Egypt, United Kingdom, Canada, United States and Australia). For the poll to be valid, a 60 per cent voter turnout was required. The poll recorded a 97 per cent voter turnout.


©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

Southern Sudan referendum

CHAPTER 3. Reign of Peace

ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka.

Overall, 98.83 per cent of votes were for the independence of Southern Sudan. International and local observers were unanimous in stating that the conduct of the referendum met international standards of transparency and fairness. No appeals contesting either the results or procedures of the plebiscite were made. All parties and stakeholders accepted the results as a true and fair representation of the wishes of the people of Southern Sudan. Detailed results are as shown in the table below.

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CHAPTER 3. Reign of Peace

Results of Southern Sudan referendum


Region / state


Southern Sudan

16,129 (0.43%)

Central Equatoria

4,985 (1.1%)

Eastern Equatoria

246 (0.05%)


111 (0.03%)


227 (0.08%)

Northern Bahr el Ghazal

234 (0.06%)


90 (0.02%)

Upper Nile

1,815 (0.52%)


167 (0.04%)

Western Bahr el Ghazal

7,237 (4.49%)

North Sudan and OCV

28,759 (23.23%)


27,918 (42.35%)


841 (1.45%)

Secession Invalid 3,697,467 (99.57%) 449,311 (98.9%) 462,663 (99.95%) 429,583 (99.97%) 298,214 (99.92%) 381,141 (99.94%) 497,477 (99.98%) 344,671 (99.48%) 468,929 (99.96%) 153,839 (95.51%) 95,051 (76.77%) 38,003 (57.65%) 57,048 (98.55%)

ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka.










































©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

©UNMIS/Tim McKulka. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation


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Prior to the signing of the CPA in 2005, southern Sudan was governed through the Coordinating Council of Southern Sudan (CCSS). The CCSS comprised a central government headed by the president of the Coordinating Council, and state governments administered by governors. All state governors were presidential appointees. Under-secretaries and ministers of the central government and states were also presidential appointees. During the war, most states operated from major towns and not necessarily from their current capitals, as is the case today. For instance, all three states of the greater Equatoria region operated from Juba, while Western Bahr el Ghazal, Northern Bahr el Ghazal, Warrap and Lakes states operated from Wau. However, Jonglei, Unity and Upper Nile states operated from their respective capitals. After the signing of the CPA, the Interim Constitution of Southern Sudan (ICOSS) 2005 established the GoSS for the south. Dr. John Garang de Mabior assumed the positions of first vice-president of the Republic of Sudan and the first president of the GoSS. He had only appointed caretaker governors for the 10 states before his death in a helicopter crash on 30 July 2005. After the tragic accident, his deputy in the SPLM/A, General Salva Kiir Mayardit, was appointed in August 2005 to replace him in both positions. In October of the same year, President Kiir appointed Dr. Riek Machar Teny as vice-president in addition to some ministers. Under-secretaries serving under the CCSS system remained in office for some time. Later, ministers recommended new under-secretaries for GoSS and they were appointed. Nevertheless, some under-secretaries who had served under the CCSS retained their positions. During the war, the SPLM operated its own governance structure, known as the Civil Authority of New Sudan (CANS). Thus, the new government comprised staff that had worked under the CCSS and CANS as well as new blood from the diaspora. The structure of the first GoSS was based on the CCSS structure, apart from two changes. The Ministry of Peace was downgraded to a commission while the Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs was created anew. All ministries also underwent internal restructuring. Line ministers recommended new structures, which were then deliberated by the Ministry of Labour and Public Service. Structures approved by the Ministry of Labour and Public Service were forwarded to the Council of Ministers for deliberation before being passed to the Southern Sudan Legislative Assembly (SSLA) for final approval. For instance, some ministries increased the number of directorates while others reduced them.


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The first GoSS cabinet comprised 22 ministers. The number later increased to 24. Currently, there are 31 ministries and 32 ministers. One minister has no portfolio.

Formation of legislative assemblies

The formation of legislative assemblies was executed through the appointment of candidates from states for the positions of members of parliament, governors and ministers at the SSLA and state levels. This position remained until the April 2010 elections when leaders elected by their respective constituents took up the elective positions. The appointments were based on existing governance structures, save for minor changes.

The Judiciary

The Southern Sudan Judiciary was changed to include the formation of the High Court of Appeal, which previously existed only in Khartoum. New appointments were made to replace northern judges and magistrates with southerners. Training and capacity building of judges and magistrates has been conducted in South Africa and Kenya, among other countries. Southern Sudan reverted to the old judicial system based on English common law that had existed prior to attempts by the north to introduce Sharia law. Presidents of the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court as well as their deputies were appointed in 2005.

Party representation in GoSS

As per CPA provisions on power sharing, the NCP, as the ruling party in the north, took up 52 per cent of government representation at the national level, while the SPLM took 28 per cent, and 20 per cent went to other political parties in the north. In the GoSS, the SPLM, as the dominant party, had 70 per cent and the NCP 10 per cent, while other southern political parties took the remaining 20 per cent. Even though the SPLM won the April 2010 general elections with a wide margin, the party is still applying the spirit of the CPA by including other parties in the current government at all levels. The same spirit has been replicated in legislative assemblies.

Government functions

The latest definition of the functions of GoSS ministries was outlined in 2008. Ministries themselves proposed the functions, which were consequently tabled and approved by the SSLA. The document specifying functions was thereafter compiled by the Ministry of Labour and Public Service.

GoSS structure

The elected president heads the executive arm of the Government of Southern Sudan. The president appoints the vice-president, presidential advisors, cabinet ministers and chairpersons of independent commissions as well as chambers. State governors are, however, elected directly by their respective constituents. The following portrays this structure. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation


As of June 2011

CHAPTER 3. Reign of Peace

©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

GoSS achievements

When the GoSS took office in 2005, virtually no infrastructure, systems of governance or legislation existed. What Southern Sudan is today, in its totality, embodies the achievement of GoSS. ©UNICEF.

Another great achievement of GoSS is its success in maintaining peace over the last six years of the CPA. The government has managed to steer the country successfully through complex democratic processes such as the general elections and referendum. Although there are outstanding issues of the CPA like Abyei and north-south border demarcation, the GoSS has made tremendous progress in achieving numerous other elements of the CPA. The GoSS has also registered remarkable achievements in the following sectors:


The government, through the Ministry of Transport and Roads, has rehabilitated and expanded road and bridge networks all over Southern Sudan. About 1,000 kilometres of roads were rehabilitated or built in 2010 alone. Feasibility studies are complete for another 7,000 kilometres of roads in the 10 states, which will be constructed or rehabilitated in the near future. Fencing and installation of modern equipment at Juba International Airport as well as reconstruction of Juba River Port are ongoing.


The government has promoted good governance. The Ministry of Legal Affairs and Constitutional Development has drafted several bills, which have been enacted by the SSLA and applied in streamlining public governance. Additionally, accountability


CHAPTER 3. Reign of Peace


institutions such as the Southern Sudan AntiCorruption Commission have been strengthened. The Ministry of Labour and Public Service has deployed electronic payroll systems to remove ghost workers at both GoSS and state levels. The government is also committed to developing a competent, efficient and disciplined workforce to deliver high quality public services to citizens.



The Ministry of Agriculture has purchased and distributed 200 tractors along with 20 metric tons of seeds to farmers’ groups across the country. Furthermore, extension officers and farmers country-wide have been trained in modern agricultural techniques through field demonstration plots and nurseries. Similarly, the Ministry of Animal Resources and Fisheries has invested in vaccination of livestock against preventable diseases as well as animal disease surveillance. It has also provided drugs to support smallholder farmers.


The government has trained 1,229 primary school teachers, 1,000 pre-service teachers, 238 science and mathematics teachers as well as 200 alternative education teachers. The Ministry of Education has rehabilitated or built classrooms and provided learning materials. The government has also paid school fees for several thousand students in institutions of higher learning, both locally and abroad.


The Ministry of Health has expanded immunization programmes countrywide, distributed five solar refrigerators to each state as well as 97,000 mosquito nets, and employed an additional 200 health workers. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation


CHAPTER 3. Reign of Peace

©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

Post independence priority areas Peace and reconciliation

The government is prioritizing the healing and reconciliation of South Sudanese people who have been traumatized by decades ©UNMIS/Tim McKulka. of war, subjugation and discrimination. The region is emerging “broken” from the turmoil and needs healing to root out the dominant culture of violence. The government appeals to all sectors of South Sudanese society to join in its efforts to make this noble dream of having peace in households, within communities and even on the streets a reality.

Security and the rule of law

The government will enforce the rule of law in the country as a means of facilitating peace and prosperity in its territory. Sceptics may have predicted that South Sudan would be a failed state. They will all be proved wrong because this sovereign Republic of South Sudan will be one of the most peaceful and prosperous societies in the region and beyond. No one should underrate the resolve of the people of South Sudan to achieve peace and the rule of law. To aid this effort, the government has recruited, trained, equipped and deployed more law enforcement personnel to ensure that peace prevails within the borders of South Sudan.

Food security

The many years of war affected food production in South Sudan. All agricultural systems were destroyed during the war. Furthermore, a large portion of arable land in South Sudan was mined. Currently, most food is imported from neighbouring countries. The government has put in place strategies to enhance food production through improved agriculture.


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South Sudan is endowed with fertile soils and abundant rainfall and has the potential to be the breadbasket of the region. The government will also spend resources to construct modern storage facilities for agricultural produce.

Diversification of the economy

The government is committed to reducing reliance ŠMinistry of Information. on oil revenues by nurturing non-oil revenue streams. It has strategies to harness the potential of tourism, industrialization, hydropower production and agriculture as alternative sources of income and foreign exchange. The government is also implementing elaborate macroeconomic management strategies to stabilize the economy to manage inflation, exchange rates and foster the favourable balance of international trade. The government also prioritizes conservation of wildlife as well as the physical environment.


The government recognizes that education empowers citizens to fulfil their civil obligations and duties for their country. Thus, it prioritizes education at all levels. Importantly, it prioritizes support for children drawn from internally displaced person and returnee communities. Further, recruitment and training of teachers, construction of learning spaces as well as development of learning materials remain a major priority. Development of vocational training centres and technical institutes is also receiving prominence in government development plans.

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CHAPTER 3. Reign of Peace

Rural development

Recognizing that the majority of citizens live in rural or semi-urban settings, the government is prioritizing rural development through the “taking towns to the villages� policy. This will not only improve livelihoods of rural folk but stem ruralurban migration and its side effects like increased pressure on social amenities in urban centres, unemployment and crime. The government also supports the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) as a means of taking development to the grass roots.


The government prioritizes the provision of improved healthcare services throughout the country. It prioritizes the construction or rehabilitation of health centres, training of health workers, distribution of pharmaceuticals and sustenance of the fight against HIV/ AIDS.


The government has prioritized the development of housing facilities in urban centres; construction of office premises for government operations and development of a sewage system for Juba. In addition, it is keen to complete ongoing and new road projects, including Raad-Boma-Narus, Juba-Mundri, and Juba-Bor roads, as well as the upgrading of Juba International Airport, which involves construction of a new terminal, civil aviation office and hotel. Development of water services in Juba, Wau, Malakal and Renk as well as the construction of new boreholes, water distribution networks and flood control dykes are also high on the government agenda.


CHAPTER 3. Reign of Peace

International relations

As a new country, South Sudan prioritizes the establishment and maintenance of good relations with its neighbours and strategic partners. All existing liaison offices have been upgraded to embassies. The government plans to establish new embassies in strategic countries such as Russia, South Korea, China, Zambia and Ghana, among others.

War veterans, heroes and victims

The Ministry of SPLA and Veterans Affairs is implementing plans to cater for the needs of veterans. The ministries of Education, Labour and Public Service and Human Resource Development are also giving special consideration to education, training and employment for widows as well as orphans. The government is also prioritizing the establishment of a retirement package for SPLM/A historical leaders who sacrificed everything for the cause of the people for decades.


Other government priorities include construction of the South Sudan international telecommunications gateway; expansion of electricity supply; improved access to public information; development of an investments map for South Sudan; de-mining; disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of select SPLA soldiers; gender mainstreaming; child welfare development; youth empowerment; and construction and operation of Rejaf Education Centre for the blind and deaf as well as other rehabilitation centres countrywide.

Photos on this page ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY IN SOUTHERN SUDAN United Nations The CPA period UN agencies, funds and programmes UN Mission In Sudan

ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka.

Non-governmental organizations



he critical period following the signing of the CPA presented a major opportunity to secure peace and ensure sustainable development in southern Sudan. It also provided an opportunity for peace building in conflict-prone areas. International support to southern Sudan during the conflict and post-CPA period has included the United Nations, international non-governmental organizations (INGOs) and several national NGOs.

United Nations United Nations support to Sudan spans over 30 years, with agencies like UNICEF, the World Food Programme (WFP), UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), UN Development Programme (UNDP) and World Health Organization (WHO) taking part. Over the years, they have provided a wide range of material and technical assistance to southern Sudan. A unique emergency response mechanism to assist Sudan’s war-affected population, Operation Lifeline Sudan (OLS), was established in 1989. This was in the wake of the devastating drought in 1988. OLS was the first humanitarian programme ever established within a sovereign country to provide relief to people affected by an on-going conflict.

ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka.

By 1989, over 250,000 had died, while over a million were displaced by the war. A further one million fled to the neighbouring countries as refugees. The war had also destroyed the physical infrastructure in the southern Sudan.

SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



OLS was a consortium of UN agencies led by UNICEF and the World Food Programme, with some 35 NGOs providing humanitarian assistance. Through negotiated access agreements with the government and the SPLA, war-affected civilians received life-saving assistance. The combatants agreed to open eight “corridors of tranquillity” for relief delivery. These temporary ceasefire agreements later evolved into “open corridors”, with timing and location determined through dialogue with warring parties, according to where fighting was currently occurring. OLS achieved significant results against enormous logistical and other odds. This led to the establishment of an operational base at Lokichoggio, Kenya. The base became a bustling hub of activity, its re-built airstrip at one time second only to Nairobi in terms of flight traffic. Opportunities the corridors presented allowed OLS with UNICEF and partner agencies like WHO as well as the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) to also implement humanitarian, medical and sanitation programmes in Malakal and Rumbek. In 1994, OLS formalized its operations through an agreement signed under the auspices of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Drought and Development (IGADD), with aims of preventing hunger, reducing morbidity and mortality, assisting the civilian population to re-establish coping mechanisms and restoring basic social services.



Alongside OLS was the Sudan Relief and Rehabilitation Association (SRRA), a humanitarian wing of the SPLM/A tasked with coordinating aid agency activities. Set up in 1985, the SRRA played a crucial role in facilitating humanitarian aid delivery to remote populations at the war’s peak. The SRRA proved a crucial partner for OLS. It had staff on the ground, some of whom were military officers who helped open access to affected populations. The SRRA also provided information from populations which the OLS could not reach. Over time, the SRRA moved to restructure itself, strengthen its coordination role and effectively manage humanitarian operations in the south as the area under SPLM/A control expanded. It eventually transformed itself into the Southern Sudan Relief and Rehabilitation Commission (SSRRC) under the GoSS to coordinate its humanitarian programmes. OLS officially ceased operations with the signing of the CPA.

Photos on this page ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation


©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.


The CPA period With peace assured, attention turned to assessing Sudan’s reconstruction needs. Key partners the GoSS, SPLM, World Bank, UN, IGAD and IGAD Partners’ Forum - agreed to hold a donors’ conference. The partners then commissioned an assessment that led to the drawing up of a comprehensive framework for development priorities - the Joint Assessment Mission (JAM). Its recommendations covered the six-year interim period. The JAM report was presented to the donor conference in Oslo in April 2005, securing a pledge of $4.5 billion for Sudan. The Multi-Donor Trust Funds (MDTFs) were designed under the JAM to coordinate funding for reconstruction and development needs of Southern Sudan. MDTF donors include Canada, Denmark, Egypt, European Commission, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom, and the World Bank, with the GoSS providing counterpart funding. To date, donors have contributed a total of $524.31 million to MDTF-Southern Sudan. The GoSS has contributed $178.6 million.


ŠUNMIS/Tim McKulka.


UN agencies, funds and programmes With the signing of the CPA, most UN agencies and NGOs relocated their operations from Kampala, Nairobi, Lokichoggio and the interim capital of Rumbek in Lakes State to the Southern Sudanese capital of Juba to ensure quick delivery of programmes. Over the last six years, the situation in Southern Sudan has progressed from humanitarian emergency to development, despite enormous challenges. This has been possible with support and effective coordination between the GoSS and its development partners. The UN Country Team (UNCT) has worked closely with the GoSS and major implementing partners since 2005 to provide both short-term humanitarian assistance and technical expertise for long-term development. Key areas of UNCT support on the humanitarian front include emergency preparedness and working to meet urgent needs of returnees and other vulnerable groups. It also works in protection, monitoring violence against civilians and helping to ensure the safety and dignity of returnees. The UNCT also builds the capacity of GoSS and local governments to deliver services effectively. The return of over two million refugees and IDPs, the opening up of over 6,000 kilometres of roads, the reduction of measles from epidemic levels, the quadrupling of children in primary schools and the repair as well as demining of priority trunk roads are achievements that unprecedented interagency coordination and support from donors made possible. SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

The UN also provided technical and logistical assistance to the government during the 2008 national census, 2010 elections and the 2011 referendum. Realizing the scope of Southern Sudan’s human resource deficit as one of the highest in Africa, two major initiatives are ongoing under the UNDP. One is the rapid capacity placement initiative and the other is the IGAD regional effort, which seeks to boost GoSS capacity by seconding and embedding 200 civil servants from the organization’s member states in core ministries.

UN Mission in Sudan To intensify peace efforts and build on progress made by 2004, including signing of the Agreement on Wealth Sharing and the Protocol on Power Sharing, the UN Security Council established (through resolution 1547) a special political mission, the UN Advance Mission in the Sudan (UNAMIS). UNAMIS was mandated to facilitate contacts with the parties concerned and prepare for the introduction of a UN peace support operation. Then Secretary-General Kofi Anan appointed Jan Pronk (the Netherlands) as his Special Representative for the Sudan and head of UNAMIS. Mr. Pronk had led UN peacemaking support for the IGAD-mediated talks on the north-south conflict, as well as for African Union talks on the Darfur conflict in western Sudan. On 31 January 2005 the Secretary-General recommended to the Security Council the deployment of a multi-dimensional peace support operation. It would consist of up to 10,000 military personnel and an appropriate civilian component, including 700 police officers.



©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

The UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) is a fully resourced multi-dimensional peace support operation that would build upon existing resources, expertise, experiences and comparative advantages of the UNCT to avoid duplication and subscribe to a unified vision of its mandate and objective. UNMIS is headed by a Special Representative of the Secretary-General and includes components focusing on political support for the peace process, security, governance, and humanitarian as well as development assistance.

©UNMIS/Arpan Munier.

UNMIS has continued to support implementation of the CPA by aiding the parties, monitoring and verifying security arrangements and offering assistance in several areas. It has focused on the parties’ outstanding commitments, including redeployment of forces and resolution of the dispute over the Abyei area.

SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation



Non-governmental organizations Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have a long history in South Sudan, dating back to the 1970s and 1980s, when many set up operations in response to famines. During the war, INGOs worked together with the SPLM/A and UN under the OLS in remote field locations, playing a crucial role in providing emergency relief, food and medical supplies. They also helped in setting up and running refugee camps in neighbouring countries as well as providing psychological support to the displaced. INGOs operated under the NGO Forum, a mechanism set up in the early 1990s as a coordination mechanism under OLS. It was originally located in Nairobi. The forum was created to discuss issues concerning programming, humanitarian financing, delivery of humanitarian aid and access to services. The forum began meeting in Juba in 2007, when INGO head offices began to relocate from Nairobi. Since then, the number of INGOs operating in South Sudan has more than tripled, increasing from 47 in 2005 to the current 130. The forum has also expanded to incorporate national NGOs. Given the protracted civil war, the legacy of destruction and extreme underdevelopment, NGOs in South Sudan have for many years been the main providers of public services, including health care, water, sanitation, education and livelihoods. During the past six years of the transition period, both local and international NGOs continued to provide emergency, relief and resettlement, especially for internally displaced persons (IDPs) and returnees.


©UNMIS/Tim McKulka.

©UNMIS/Stuart Price.


SOUTH SUDAN Birth of a Nation


South Sudan Independence Book  

A book highlighting the birth of a new nation, its struggle, history, heros and future.

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