Members of the Forum’s Sudan Civil Society Advisory Committee gather at their inaugural meeting at the Forum office in Khartoum. From left to right: Dr. Samia Alnagar, Dr. Manzoul Assal, Alsir Alsayed, Fisal M. Salih, Prof. Murgani Hamur, Dr. Asha Alkarib and Prof. Adlan Alhardalo.
The Forum of Federations program in Sudan is in full swing. The Forum recently signed a key agreement with the government of Sudan, held extensive meetings with the Sudanese Advisory Committee on Civil Society to help guide the Forum’s programming with civil society in Sudan and hosted an inaugural reception at its new offices.
Engaging civil society in Sudan is a key component to the Forum’s Sudan program, which aims to help establish a viable democratic federal system of governance for Sudan as a critical element of durable peace for the country.
At one of the civil society meetings on July 26 and 27, 2006, a member of the committee told the gathering: ” ‘I have come a long way since as a teenager I carried a placard at rallies that read ‘No federation for one nation’ to believing that federalism is the natural system and great need for our country.”
The planning session of the committee, chaired by Dr. Abdel Rahim Belal, dealt with issues of programming priorities, institutional arrangements, challenges and further consultation processes. This work will lead up to the committeee’s submission of a report of recommendations to the Forum in late-September.
The Forum also signed a memorandum of understanding with the Ministry of Federal Governance. The memorandum covers the Forum’s direct programming with the Government of Sudan as well as establishing the legal basis for its other operations in universities, civil society and in Southern Sudan. The Forum was represented at these events by Shawn Houlihan, the director of its Africa program. He was also on hand to welcome Chandan Sinha, the Forum’s Senior Advisor to the Sudanese ministry.
These activities are part of the first phase of a multi-year project with anticipated funding of CDN $ 2.2 million from the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade.
Khartoum-July 29, 2006:Shaking hands after signing the Memorandum of Understanding are Zanoun Abdel Nabi (left front) for Sudane’s Ministry of Federal Governance and Shawn Houlihan for the Forum of Federations. In the back row centre is H.E. John Angol Korodit, State Minister of the Ministry of Federal Governance of Sudan. [ Photo: Chandan Sinha ]