President Jacob Zuma welcomes the Announcement of the Southern Sudan Referendum Results

President Jacob Zuma has taken note of the results of the South Sudan Referendum presented on 7 February 2011 by the Chairperson of the Southern Sudan Referendum Commission (SSRC), Mohamed Ibrahim Khalil to President Al-Bashir.

President Zuma lauds the efforts of both President Al-Bashir and First Vice President Salva Kiir on delivering a peaceful and credible referendum for the people of Southern Sudan. He further praised the work of the Southern Sudan Referendum Commission and Bureau which worked immensely with a lot of pressure.

The announcement of the results is a culmination of a long journey for the people of the Sudan which began by the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) in 2005 between the Government of Sudan and Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM).

The South African Government welcomes the immediate acceptance of the results of the referendum by the Government of Sudan and its expression of willingness to support and conclude all necessary procedures to ensure the establishment of an independent, viable state of South Sudan. The acceptance of the results by President Al-Bashir demonstrates the strong political will for peace that exists among the leadership in the Sudan and sets the foundation for a harmonious co-existence between the people of North and South Sudan.

South Africa stands ready to recognise and welcome the new state of South Sudan to the community of nations in July 2011 and will continue to strengthen its relations with the people of North [Sudan] and South Sudan. The projects that South Africa has launched in Sudan since the signing of the CPA in 2005 will continue and shall be enhanced where necessary to support ongoing peace and good neighbourliness between North Sudan and South Sudan.

South Africa is encouraged by the commitments of the parties to the CPA to speedily deal with the outstanding post-referendum issues such as the referendum for Abyei, border demarcation, natural resources and economic issues, citizenship, security and other issues as they have promised. In this regard South Africa is in full support of the African Union High Level Implementation Panel led by former President Thabo Mbeki, in facilitating the negotiations between the parties on the post-referendum issues.

President Jacob Zuma, on behalf of the Government and the people of South Africa, congratulates the people of Sudan on this historic milestone and undertakes to march with them on their journey towards peace, harmony and development for the entire Sudan.

For further information please contact: Mr Clayson Monyela, spokesperson for DIRCO, on 082 884 5974.

Issued by the Department of International Relations and Cooperation
OR Tambo Building
460 Soutpansberg Road

09 February 2011

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