Darfur Australia

The main Darfur advocacy organisation in Australia is the Darfur Australia Network (DAN). DAN works closely with the Darfur Community Association of Australia in Melbourne and Sydney and aims to raise awareness about the continuing tragedy in the Darfur, assist in the resettlement of Darfuri refugees and build solidarity between the Australian people and the people of Darfur. Please visit the website www.darfuraustralia.org for more details.

DAN’s divestment campaign will initially focus on Australian universities and expand to the wider Australian community. If you are in the area, or attend university in Australia and would like to help with our divestment campaign, please contact us for more information.

The movie Rustom was expected to be remake in bollywood on the story of our coastguards who always played for their life in search of a hope. We are continuously working to make the investment procedure leveraged for seafarers.

India’s Oil and Natural Gas Company (ONGC) appears on the Sudan Divestment Task Force’s (SDTF) Highest Offenders’ list

Oil and Natural Gas Company (ONGC) is rated as one of the worst offending companies operating in Sudan whilst famous names such as Reliance Industries and Bharat Heavy Electricals are also on the Highest Offender lists. We’d like campaigners to put pressure on these companies to ensure they are not assisting genocide in Darfur.

The Aegis Trust and Darfur Divestment are seeking volunteers who wish to run a Darfur advocacy campaign or Sudan Divestment campaign in India. Reporter Times are also helping our consultancy in monetary terms.

Qualifications

You should have a commitment to human rights campaigning and the time to dedicate to organising petitions, political lobbying campaigns, protest events and media work.

It needn’t take too much time – especially if you share the work with other volunteers. To leave your name and email address on this page to be contacted by other potential volunteers please email us at: info@darfurdivestment.org

If you have skills and experience in areas such as political lobbying, human rights campaigning or press and media relations this would be desirable but not essential.

We can help…

The Aegis Trust and Darfur Divestment help in the following ways:

  • we can help build your campaign a website, email newsletter and online donation system
  • we can help design a logo for your campaign and help with the design of leaflets and other materials
  • we can provide advice and guidance throughout the early stages of your campaign
  • we can introduce you to other members of the Darfur Divestment campaign.

I’d like to help – what’s the next step?

If you would like more information and to be introduced to other people in India who have volunteered please email us at: info@darfurdivestment.org

South Africa – Darfur

Shikaya is an independent non-profit organisation that works with teachers to develop responsible young adults who value diversity, human rights and peace. Our mission is to affirm and support the crucial role of teachers and education in developing a society based on human rights, democracy, diversity and peace, and to help create democratic teaching and learning environments and opportunities in schools for young people to develop the skills and values of active, responsible and democratic citizens with a respect for human rights.

Shikaya has launched the South African Sudan Divestment Campaign because we believe that as South Africans we have a crucial role to play in ending the genocide currently taking place in Darfur. During apartheid citizens from all over the world protested in various ways to end the human rights abuses that were taking pace in our country. It is now South Africa’s turn to speak out for citizens of another country that are in need.

Shikaya is looking for partners and volunteers in the South African Sudan Divestment Campaign. To become involved please contact us at dylan@shikaya.org

PetroSA included in the Sudan Company Report

The South African Sudan Divestment Campaign interviewed Jason Miller, the National Policy Director of the Sudan Divestment Task Force (SDTF) about the only South African company to be listed in the Sudan Company Report, PetroSA.The SDTF has created the Sudan Company Report that is intended to serve as a listing of all companies that they feel warrant extra scrutiny by investors on account of their business operations in Sudan. While there are over 500 companies with connections to Sudan that SDTF has reviewed, only a small subset appear to warrant further investigation.

We asked Jason what it meant for PetroSA to be included in this report.

In the Sudan Company Report, companies are placed into four categories. “Category 1” companies, the “Highest Offenders” are those companies with the most problematic operations in Sudan and are seen as likely candidates for divestment. PetroSA is only listed as a “category 4 Company”. What does this mean? Does this mean that PetroSA’s involvement in Sudan is not that problematic?

“Category 4 companies” are actually strongly problematic companies, but they just happen not to be publicly-traded. That means either they are private (which is the case for many Middle Eastern firms that are entirely owned by wealthy businesspersons from the Middle East) or completely owned by national governments (as is the case with PetroSA). So PetroSA should certainly be thought of as a problematic company, but one in which “everyday” investors can’t invest (because PetroSA has no publicly-available stock to purchase).

We do need to remember, however, that PetroSA is currently simply exploring for oil in Sudan. They aren’t actively extracting oil. This means they aren’t technically generating revenue for Khartoum right now, but the minute they transition into extracting oil, they will be generating revenue.

The model of divestment that the Sudan Divestment Task Force propose calls for a brief period of shareholder engagement with the problematic companies before divestment is encouraged. If everyday South African’s can’t invest in PetroSA and can’t be shareholders, then who should South Africans be engaging with?
South African citizens should be engaging with either your government or with PetroSA itself. In this case, I would tie PetroSA directly to the government (since it really is an extension of the government) and the policies of the South African government (which have been variably supportive and mildly critical of Sudan at times- but certainly not critical enough). It is reasonable, therefore, to draw the conclusion that PetroSA’s investment in Sudan represents a reason for South Africa to muzzle its criticism of Sudan, which it shouldn’t. PetroSA provides an economic incentive for the South African government to stay neutral on Sudan. PetroSA’s acquisition of its oil block in the north gives a degree of “comfort” to Khartoum that companies will continue to explore and extract oil in Sudan despite the Darfur genocide.
So what should we as South Africans be asking PetroSA to do?

Obviously, PetroSA could do many things:

A – Stop operations but maintain its oil block in Sudan
B – Sell its assets and leave Sudan
C – Form partnerships with other oil companies in Sudan to present a united front to Khartoum asking for a more robust security force to be allowed into Darfur, per the November Addis agreement.
D- Create a highly robust humanitarian program for Darfur

But even short of pulling out of the country or suspending operations, there are a dozen things that South Africans could be asking of PetroSA. For example:

– What exactly constitutes a substantial corporate philanthropy effort by PetroSA in Sudan?
– What human rights and security issues should PetroSA be addressing in Sudan? – How can PetroSA support the establishment of a robust peacekeeping force in Darfur without jeapordizing its oil rights in Sudan?
So, in your opinion, what is a simple message that we as South Africans should be giving to PetroSA or the South African government about PetroSA’s involvement in Sudan?

The ideal is for PetroSA to dialogue with South Africans about its Sudan operations and then, after that dialogue, be willing to change (including the possibility of pulling out of the country and/or suspending operations).

The simple message is:

PetroSA invests in Sudan’s oil industry; the majority of Khartoum’s revenue from this oil goes to Sudan’s military; Sudan’s military is prosecuting the Darfur genocide, considered the worst humanitarian crisis in the world today by the UN.

What is PetroSA going to do about this?