2 February 2011 – Aggregated preliminary results for Southern Sudan's historic, self-determination referendum were announced today by the national commission in Khartoum organizing the poll, opening a three-day window for appeals.
Three days after the Southern Sudan Referendum Commission (SSRC) announced preliminary results in the southern capital of Juba, it noted that more than 97 per cent out of nearly four million voters had cast their ballots in the poll.
The results aggregated from northern, southern and eight out of country voting centres came to a 98.83 per cent affirmation of secession, while 1.17 per cent of voters cast their ballots for unity.
According to the Referendum Act, there are now three days for the filing of appeals. If there are no complaints, final referendum results will be announced on 7 February. If appeals are filed, the announcement will be made a week later.
"This has been a collaborative effort," SSRC Chairman Mohammed Khalil said at the commission's headquarters in Khartoum, attesting to the fact that "all stakeholders were motivated by good will and determination".
Mr. Khalil thanked the United Nations, especially the joint UNMIS and UN Development Programme Elections and Referendum Division (UNIRED) for their expertise and logistical support. The success, the Chairman said, was also thanks to support from donor countries, observer missions and "all the friendly nations who have been with us through the long negotiations of the CPA (Comprehensive Peace Agreement) and since then".
After thanking the federal Government and the Government of Southern Sudan for their collaboration, Mr. Khalil commended Sudanese citizens, "who took part in the process as well as those who supported them ... without disputes".
The Chairman added that Sudanese people's conduct during the exercise showed that they are "worthy of good governance and development", and encouraged the two parties to the CPA to come to post-referendum arrangements "at reasonable speed with reasonable generosity and consideration".
Attending the event, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General Haile Menkerios congratulated the parties on carrying out the process according to the initial timetable in a well-organized and efficient, transparent and credible manner.