UNAMID Acting JSR Aichatou Mindaoudou addresses the audience gathered for the inauguration of the Darfur Regional Authority Council in Nyala, South Darfur. Photo by David Manya.
In a speech delivered on 16 January, UNAMID Acting Joint Special Representative and Joint Chief Mediator a.i. Aichatou Mindaoudou addressed the audience gathered for the inauguration of the Darfur Regional Authority (DRA) Council in Nyala, South Darfur, saying that the event marked an important milestone in the implementation of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD).
Ms. Mindaoudou noted that the inauguration of the Council completes the establishment of the DRA as the primary mechanism not only for the implementation of DDPD provisions, but also for coordinating with the relevant Government entities on recovery and development efforts in Darfur.
The DRA Council has supervisory, monitoring and organisational responsibilities and is specifically mandated to examine laws and recommend legislative measures that would promote coordination and cooperation among the Darfur states, evaluate the performance of the Regional Authority, approve its budget and ensure proper spending and accountability.
"I urge you all to do your utmost to deliver these public responsibilities and, by so doing, justify the confidence reposed in you," she said. "I call on the Government to empower and adequately fund both the Executive Council and the Council of the DRA for them to be able to function fully and effectively."
Regarding the efforts to bring all parties to the conflict to the peace process, the Acting JSR announced that talks between the Government of Sudan and the Justice and Equality Movement will resume soon in Doha. "I urge both parties to exercise flexibility in the interest of the people of Darfur who have suffered for too long," she said.
The DRA Chair, Dr. Altigani Seise, said that the inauguration of the Council represents a step toward stability and development. He praised the efforts of Qatar and UNAMID, as key DRA partners in supporting activities designed to foster peace. Dr. Seisi urged the Government of Sudan to fulfil its commitment toward the DDPD.
The Sudanese First Vice President, Ali Osman Mohammed Taha, who officially inaugurated the Council, called on the members of the Council to commit to the oath they have taken, bear the responsibility and unify their ranks for the sake of Darfur's people. "We are striving to bring peace all over Sudan and the Doha Document is one of the important tools we use to achieve this goal," said Mr. Osman.
First Vice President Osman condemned the acts of banditry, the kidnapping of humanitarian workers and the sabotage of development projects in the region, and called on the people of Darfur to rely on tolerance and rule of law to resolve conflict.