24 September 2010 – Juba-based Coalition of Civil Society Organizations for Referendum in Southern Sudan conducted a peaceful procession demanding timely, transparent and credible referenda.
Hundreds of citizens took part in the procession in Juba, which ended at the regional headquarters of the UN Mission in Sudan with the coalition handing over a memorandum to Acting Regional Coordinator Sylvia Fletcher.
The document requested the United Nations and the international community to ensure that the CPA parties -- the National Congress Party and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement -- respect implementation of the peace agreement, and hold the referenda on time in a peaceful manner.
The procession coincides with a high level meeting discussing Sudan's referenda on the margins the 65th session of the UN General Assembly in New York.
"We are sending out this message today as an assurance to the international community that what our President Salva Kiir is going to speak today in the General Assembly are not his own words but the words of the people of Southern Sudan," said the coalition's acting Secretary-General Lokulenge Lole.
Preparations for the 9 January 2011 referenda stipulated in the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), which ended the two-decade civil war between the North and South, are witnessing delays. Voter registration, procurement and distribution of polling materials are not as yet ready; some 100 days to the polling day.
Ms. Fletcher promised to relay the coalition's message to the mission leadership.
Earlier this week the Southern Sudan Youth for Referendum launched a civic education programme on referendum for secondary schools in Juba.