Kampala Declaration: On the Prospects of the Constitutional Arrangements in Sudan

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Introduction

At the invitation of the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS) and the hosting of the Pan-African Movement, nineteen Sudanese experts, and a number of Egyptian, Ugandan and international observers have gathered in Kampala, Uganda from the 26th to the 27th of January 2004 in order to discuss the constitutional questions, which have confronted and continue to confront Sudan. The assembly has discussed in patience (despite their different intellectual, occupational and academic backgrounds) their disputable issues with a view to contribute to the building of a constitutional consensus among the different Sudanese groups. The following recommendations have fructified as a persistent effort and a sincere aspiration to overcome the incessant Sudanese crisis.

The participants have concluded that constitutional instability has resulted from political instability, which afflicted the country ever since its independence in 1956. Moreover, the lack of respect for cultural, ethnic and religious diversity accompanied by an attempt to resolve major political questions by resorting to military coups or by parliamentary majority had proven to be a failure. -This failure led to several armed conflicts that caused the loss of millions of lives and to vile deterioration in all aspects of life.

The participants confirmed that all constitutional arrangements in the forthcoming period should be based on a genuine democratic transformation that would guarantee pluralism, fundamental rights and freedoms and the rule of law.

The participants urged all political forces to refrain from resorting to violence, military coups and to avoid undemocratic methods as means to assume power or settle disputes. Alternatively, those forces should endorse dialogue and democracy as legitimate means for political participation.

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