News (Stay Informed)
South Sudan vote passes threshold.
by Al Jazeer:
Organizers of a landmark South Sudan independence vote have confirmed that the turnout threshold needed for it to be valid has been reached, as Jimmy Carter, former US president, said the region looks set for nationhood.
Drivers honked their horns in the regional capital Juba on Thursday as southerners hailed the turnout achievement in just four days of the week-long polls, saying it showed the importance of freedom to them after five decades of conflict with the north.
“There is no doubt about the legitimacy of the election as far as the number of voters is concerned,” Carter told reporters.
Cars draped with the southern flag and banners calling for separation sounded their horns as they criss-crossed Juba’s potholed dirt tracks.
There was excitement at the tomb of John Garang, the veteran rebel leader, who shortly before his death signed the 2005 peace deal that ended 22 years of devastating civil war and paved the way for the independence vote. “It is proof of how important the referendum is to us that so many came to vote so quickly,” Mary Kwaje said. “We want to get our freedom.”
Carter said the challenge now was to address the outstanding issues between the two sides swiftly ahead of the July date for international recognition for the south set by the 2005 accord.
“I believe that will happen quite quickly after the results are known,” he said.
Terrific news, so happy for Southern Sudanese. All the voters illustrates just how important democracy is to human cultures.