Crisis in Bangui, Brazzaville, Juba: Reviewing African Strategic Matrix

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The Fashoda Institute published an indepth analysis of the crisis in South Sudan, Central African Republic, Congo containing a paradigm for restoring peace.

President of South Sudan, Salva Kiir Mayardit

time is ripe to assist Kiir to defeat the tribal warlords and launch the long-term development programs

On January 6th, The Fashoda Institute, a leading African think-tank, has published analysis of current violence in South Sudan, the CAR and Congo. Its main conclusion: “The fratricidal carnage initiated by sub-state tribal groupings can be expected to disappear when extremist elements are soundly defeated by state forces (as distinct from foreign forces) while the population groupings they claimed to be representing are accorded development and reform programs which prove that the state is cognizant of these groupings’ needs and interests and is not hostile to them. ”

Fashoda asserts that ”suppression of sub-state entities by increasingly authoritarian state-level governance has been the prevalent relationship. Even the genuine and well-meaning efforts at democratization – as conducted by President of South Sudan Salva Kiir Mayardit elected by a landslide in 2011 when this young democracy became independent from the Khartoum’s Islamist Government of Sudan, have focused on the rights and freedoms of individual citizens rather than the groups they identify with. The majority of groupings prefer to do so through growing involvement in state-level politics. Still, lots of these groups resort to violence, rebellions, and insurrections.”

In April 2013, the camp of Riek Machar, who heads the current rebellion, argued that leadership should be transferred from the Dinka, largest tribe in South Sudan, to the second largest, Nuer - the tribe of Machar - because “it’s our turn to eat” (as reported by the World Tribune on 29.4.2013) . "At the time the ruling SPLM party rejected to support this tribalist appeal", comments the Fashoda Institute.

On December 30, 2013, Ugandan Pres. Yoweri Museveni reiterated IGAD's support for the Kiir Administration and warned that IGAD would “defeat Machar” in order to avert further escalation of violence in the entire region”, according to the New Vision's article from 30.12.2013.

The same dynamic Fashoda Institute discerns in the neighboring Central African Republic: “The objective of the revolt is to not only topple the Djotodia Administration but to reverse the emergence of nationalist government for the entire Central African Republic.”

“In the northern parts of the Democratic Republic of Congo, the roots of conflict are not significantly different”, states the think-tank. “The conflicts in the Chad-Niger-Mali belt between nomadic tribes and the modern states anchored in the southern provinces are also most dangerous.”

The Fashoda Institute prescribes the remedy of “addressing the legitimate interests of the vital sub-state tribe and clan groupings without harming the modern state. Three neighbors - South Sudan, CAR, Cameroon - have to establish a comprehensive multi-layered system of governance that balances the ethno-national diversity with having strong-centralized state governments which are imperative for undertaking and implementing major development programs. Both Presidents Kiir and Djotodia are doing their utmost to both quell the insurrections destabilizing their states and to convince the West of their enduring commitment to long-term profound reforms. Official Juba, Bangui, and Yaounde have already committed to regional cooperation.”

“Pres. Kiir proposed regional and national reform and development programs. Pres. Djotodia committed to participation in and implementing far-reaching reforms. Little wonder that sub-state groupings which fear marginalization rebelled”, concludes the analysis. “Instead of enforcing cessation of hostilities in a way which would both benefit the rebels and encourage others to follow suite in the name of humanitarian concern, the time is ripe to assist these state leaders to not only defeat the rebellions of tribal warlords but to immediately launch their long-term reforms and development programs in order to put their states and the entire region on the right track to enduring stability and prosperity.”

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Adam Mbeki
The Fashoda Institute
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