The chairman of the referendum commission, Mohamed Ibrahim Khalil, expressed his disillusion over rough tactics amongst commission members, a reflection of the much rougher game between the parties to the CPA, SPLM and NCP. According to Khalil Southern members of the commission are voting as a bloc to prevent the nomination of a Northerner to the position of commission secretary general. The post is of significance since the office controls budget and funds of the commission. Faced by this starter deadlock Khalil warned that he may be forced to resign.
Khalil already in his 80s can look back to a long history of political involvement in ‘Old Sudan’. Once a minister of local governance, justice and foreign affairs, as well as speaker of parliament, the old professor - on the face of it - is a best candidate to provide the commission with an informed leadership. His demand that members of the commission rise to the occasion and approach their duty with a sense of national responsibility exposes his grand misunderstanding of the situation. It is exactly because this national tale is not selling that there is a referendum on unity versus secession. The rearrangement of ‘Old Sudan’ via war and agreement is symptomatic of the disillusion with the Sudan he helped to make.
Instead of suggesting leadership solutions to the dilemma he now faces the Professor is threatening to throw in his towel with an argument worthy of a young schoolteacher disgusted at adolescent delinquency. I guess even Mr Khalil has to rise to the occasion and shoulder his responsibility as fit of man of his repute. If he resigns now he threatens to push the commission back to baby stage.
He needs the information and the acuity to read through the machinations of the two blocs, and if he is to serve his country he needs to learn how to walk it through the land mines that the two CPA partners plant for each other. In brief, he needs to grasp the rules of the ‘really existing New Sudan’, one created by the gun. If he cant, he then better resign.