Jimmy Carter, Senator Kerry, Kofi Annan/Sudan Vote
Independent Films, Web Series, Travel, Politics
Former US President Jimmy Carter, former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan and US Senator John Kerry observe referendum for separation in South Sudan. While results and consequences are not either known or perhaps fully foreseen, the mechanics of vote are given passing assessment.
Transcripts / Production notes / Scripts
US senator John Kerry, former US President Jimmy Carter and former UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, are among several high-profile international observers in Southern Sudan keeping a close eye on the landmark referendum on independence from the north.
Hundreds of thousands of Southern Sudanese started voting today (9 January) in a landmark referendum on independence from the north. The week-long vote is widely expected to result in Africa's largest country being split in two.
The poll was agreed as part of the 2005 Comprehensive peace deal which ended the two-decade north-south civil war.
US senator John Kerry, former US President Jimmy Carter and former UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, were among several high-profile international observers in Southern Sudan keeping a close eye on the referendum process.
SOUNDBITE (English) John Kerry, US Senator:
“First of all it’s inspiring, it’s remarkable to see the patience of people, I just talked to one woman and then I said, oh you have to wait for a while; she said we have been waiting since 1956. That’s the spirit here and people are committed to this and it’s a remarkable process, the voting is slow but it’s fool-proof. It will be an accountable and transparent process, I think that matters enormously.”
The Carter foundation team, lead by Carter and Annan, has 100 observers in the various states of Southern Sudan monitoring the process. President Carter said that the vote has been calm and peaceful.
SOUNDBITE (English) Jimmy Carter, Former US President,
“Reports we have had from all over the nation, north and south, so far have been that everything is calm and peaceful and that the people seem very enthusiastic about voting. And by the way I have met with president Bashir yesterday and assured me that the government will accept whatever result there is peacefully and looks forward to resolving all the remaining differences in the days ahead.”
Addressing journalists, Annan added that he was encouraged by the participation of women in the vote and hoped that once bitter enemies would be able to live peacefully like many other parts of the world.
SOUNDBITE (English) Kofi Annan, Former UN Secretary General,
“They have seen enough wars and they are tired and we should have positive expectations and encourage them. War and conflict is not the only option, there is enough in history to tell us that enmity between peoples need not last forever and bitter enemies have made peace and today in many parts of the world live peacefully together and it can and should happen here also in Sudan.”
The Special Representative for the UN Secretary-General, Haile Menkerios, traveled to Torit in Eastern Equatoria and witnessed the first day of voting and said that so far the voting is going well.
Talking about security during the referendum period the SRSG said that there are some concerns in the south's Unity state and the contested Abyei region, but added that the insecurity has so far not affect the process of the referendum.
SOUNDBITE (English) Haile Menkerios, UN Special representative of Secretary General to Sudan,
“So far even where some security issues have been reported in Unity State and Abyei, they have not been at a level where they will impact on the referendum, the conduct of the polling. Hopefully it will continue that way, but we will continue to monitor and try to help the police and the armed forces in insuring that security remains that way.”
Members of the United Nations Secretary General Referendum Panel led by the former President of Tanzania are also visiting centers across Southern Sudan monitoring the process.
About 3.9 million people are registered to vote. A simple majority must vote for separation for the referendum to pass, but 60 percent of registered voters must cast ballots for the vote to be valid.
After the polls close next Saturday, local polling stations will begin tallying and posting results as more than 4,000 local and international observers watch. Final results won't be certified until February.
Year of Production: 2011
Length: 3 mins
Jimmy Carter, Senator Kerry, Kofi Annan/Sudan Vote by DiplomaticallyIncorrect is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 3.0 License.
- Muhamed Sacirbey, UNTV
- Susan Sacirbey