In the wake of the secession of South Sudan from Sudan in July 2011 and the recent clashes between the two countries over the oil-rich region of Heglig, citizens of both Sudans found themselves in the middle of an ugly upheaval.
On April 29, 2012, the Twitterverse was filled with an atmosphere of union and solidarity between Twitter users from both countries. Inspired by late Dr. John Garang’s vision for a “New Sudan”, they initiated the hashtag #newSUDANS and voiced their opinions, perceptions and hopes for two new democratic Sudans.
Aguil Lual (@AguilB) called on Sudanese and South Sudanese on Twitter to revive the momentum of Garang’s “New Sudan” speech and join the dialogue, saying:
@AguilB: What are your dreams 4 peaceful co-existence of the Sudans? Thoughts on CPA? What our leaders should do? #join the conversation #newSUDANS
Aguil also called for freedoms and pride:
@AguilB: Freedom to report on politics, politicians, corruption, & rights abuses w/out being detained/beaten/silenced, impoverished #newSUDANS
@AguilB: Pride in our Sudaness. One day the news reports & int'l com will showcase South Sudan & Sudan as a model 4 peaceful transition #newSUDANS
Ali (@kashiff111) noted his vision for #newSUDANS:
@kashiff111: #newSUDANS powerful with it's individualism, colorful with its diversity, tolerant with it's unity, peaceful with it's faith.
Raian Gibrel (@bro0ownsugar) envisioned women empowerment, recognition of freedoms and an end to corruption:
@bro0ownsugar: empower women in order to get the other half of the society active and productive #newSUDANS
@bro0ownsugar: freedom of speech, religion, political practice #newSUDANS
@bro0ownsugar: “Eliminate corruption and all its resources #newSudans”
Muhanad Rabie (@Neo0rabie) called on peaceful conflict resolution:
@Neo0rabie: #newSUDANS Every one Must put his gun down. lets talk it out. Money you spend in War can be better spend in development, Health & Education
Muhanad also voiced his hope for the return of Sudanese in the Diaspora:
@Neo0rabie: People in #Diaspora have got to come back one day. #newSudans
Asmara Adanis (@AsmaraAdanis) cited good healthcare:
@AsmaraAdanis: Human life is valued. Unjustified death of Sudanese citizens not simply labelled destiny. Existence of #HealthCare #newSUDANS
Omer Abdellatif (@OmerAbdellatif) called against using religion to manipulate people:
@OmerAbdellatif: Do NOT use religion as a tool to manipulate people & laws! Treat people fairly regardless of religious backgrounds! #newSUDANS
On the other hand, Ahmed K (@SkinyTestaverde) preached secularism in #newSUDANS:
@SkinyTestaverde: Were we take advantage of our incredible diversity, eliminate tribalism, and realize that secularism is GOOD for religion #newSUDANS
Moez Ali (@his_moezness) used #newSUDANS to express that Sudanese people from all tribes and ethnicities should be identified as one:
@his_moezness: I'm from Shendi, El Fasher, Juba, El Damazin. I'm a Northerner, a
Southerner, a Nuba, a Zaghawi, a Fur and a Hadandawi #newSUDANS
Muhammad Osman (@Meltilib) promoted the elimination of racism, economic equality and freedom from intellectual materialism:
@Meltilib: #NewSudans where diseases of racism, ethno-centersim & religious bigotry are no more.
@Meltilib: #NewSudans with less economic inequality
@Meltilib: #NewSudans should be free of all forms of intellectual materialism.
Ahmad Mohamed (@AhmadMohamed10) tweeted his aspirations for #newSUDANS:
@AhmadMohamed10: I dream of the day when the #newSUDANS form a EU style federation with all the freedoms & economic cooperation that entails.
@AhmadMohamed10: Sudan and South Sudan – living side by side in peace with close economic, cultural & social cooperation/exchange. #NewSUDANS
And finally, Osman Musa (@OsmanBMusa) hoped:
@OsmanBMusa: No more trouble #newSUDANS.
The hashtag #newSUDANS continues.