What is the House of Nationalities?


Answers to some initial concerns


Initial fears saw the House of Nationalities as an instrument to be used against major ethnic communities. But all cultures have the same sig-nificance, and all are in need of the same protection. Although the various communities may be different in culture and in size, all communities count with an equality of rights.

There were worries that the House of Nationalities might become an obstacle for building a modern state. But Somaliland, where the tribal house called «Guurti» prepared the ground for the establishment of modern institutions, provides a reassuring experience, and so could Botswana, where a "House of Chiefs" was set up by the country's modern constitution.

Concerns were also raised that a House of Nationalities in the South Sudan might separate the South from its immediate neighbours to the North. However, tribal structures also exist in the North, the East and the West of Sudan. Different Houses of Nationalities could therefore be created in the other parts of the country. By giving cultural diversity a political recognition, the House of Nationalities will make an important contribution to a new vision of a nation-state for the whole of the Sudan.


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