The convening of the Sudanese Civil Society Initiative (CSI) General Assembly is a step in the right direction
Date: 14 January 2016
Sudan Democracy First Group (SDFG) congratulates the Sudanese Civil Society Initiative (CSI) on convening its first General Assembly and the election of its new Executive Committee on 3 January 2017.
SDFG extends congratulations to the members of the Executive Committee headed by Dr. Amin Maki Madani (President of the CSI and a member of the Board of Directors of SDFG); Dr. Babikir Mohamed Elhassan (CSI Vice President of the CSI) and Mr. Hamid Ali Elnour (the Secretary General of the CSI) for their election. They will form the leadership of the CSI in addition to the members of the ten-technical secretariat.
This meeting was a step in the right direction, maintaining the identity of the CSI and keeping its symbolic name since its establishment and its signing to the Sudan call, and formally approving its charters and documents. The convening of the General Assembly confirms the CSI’s commitment to achieving the objectives set out in the historic signature of the Sudan Call agreement two years ago. It also reflects the vital role that the broader Sudanese civil society can play in achieving positive political change alongside other Sudanese democratic forces.
The convening of the General Assembly came as a result of the positive progress the CSI had achieved in bridging the gap between the political movements and taking the lead in developing alternative policies, including Sudan’s “tomorrow project”, and taking the initiative in proposing basic charters of the opposition including the Sudan Call in addition to its essential role in building the Civil front working for the positive change in Sudan.
SDFG appreciates the inclusive path which the CSI has followed to listen to, and bring together, different civic forces. This was reflected in the broad spectrum of voices which participated in General Assembly. More effort is still needed by the newly elected leadership, however, to ensure greater inclusivity and representation of civil society abroad and in exile, professional and trade union groups, advocacy groups, women, and youth groups in addition to independent scholars, technocrats, and democracy fighters. In particular, there is a need for broadening the active participation of civil society from = areas outside the control of the government (in Darfur, Blue Nile and Southern Kordofan) which was such an integral part of the CSI since its establishment on 3 December 2014.
SDFG reiterates its support and readiness to participate in developing CSI strategic programs, projects, and activities in order to enrich the civic and popular momentum to achieve positive change in Sudan. This includes the building of a united civic front and supporting grass root civil resistance committees. The CSI must continue to work with all positive change agents in Sudan to present alternatives for re-establishing the Sudanese state on the basis of peace, genuine democratic change, and justice.