The Ad Hoc Contact Organ of the Nairobi’s National Consultative Conference held its meeting in Addis Ababa from April 1-3, 2016. The Chairman and the members of the committee presented their reports for the last three months, and then embarked on an objective assessment of their performance. The chairman concluded that the overall work of the committee was productive, and attributed its success to the strong support it gained from the organizations that participated in the Nairobi meeting and the Eritrean public in general. In its evaluation of the phase that followed the Nairobi meeting, the Contact Organ noted some confusion in the understanding of the aims and objectives of the Forum For National Dialogue (Medrekh) by some sides, perhaps, because of the seemingly similar path the National Council, like the Forum, is making preparations for its second Conference, or other reasons. Accordingly, the Contact Organ deemed it necessary to reassure the following:
- The National Consultative Conference of Nairobi was a consultative meeting of the various political organizations and parties to reach a common political understanding on the present Eritrean affairs and a vision for the future.
- The mission of the Ad Hoc Contact Organ, in accordance with the tasks it was entrusted, is to strive in involving all political forces, those who participated, as well as those who did not participate in the Nairobi Consultative Meeting, in the upcoming second consultative meeting, and not a replacement (displacement) of the Eritrean National Council for Democratic Change or the Democratic Alliance or any other political arrangement. Therefore, the Nairobi Forum does not interfere or contradict with the preparation of the second National Conference of the National Council of Eritrea.
Based on its unanimous assessment, the Ad Hoc Contact Organ put forward its provisional programme of work that covers the period from the end of the meeting (April 3) and the second half of the month of August, when the second consultation meeting will be held. Towards this, it has decided, to initiate the preparation of working papers, which will set the agenda for discussion of the next consultative meeting, namely: a unifying strategic vision for the opposition, an agreement on the means to topple the dictatorial regime, drafting a vision for the transitional period utilizing all existing documents of the Eritrean National Council for Democratic Change, the Eritrean Democratic Alliance, Eritrean Peoples’ Democratic Party and other opposition forces, as well as the findings of a committee of Eritrean experts who will conduct Root Cause Analysis of the Eritrean opposition by taking into account all previous experiences.
During the time of its meeting, the Ad Hoc Contact Organ held important meetings with the different political forces, in order to update relevant parties of the activities it has undertaken since its formation, pursuant to the responsibilities it was entrusted by the National Consultative Meeting held in Nairobi. The first meeting was to brief the representatives of the organizations, which participated in the Nairobi Forum, of the achievements that have been made and the circumstances in which the overall activities were put into effect. The representatives of the organizations have reconfirmed their support for the mission of the Ad Hoc Contact Organ. Medrekh and members of the Contact Organ also met with representatives of the six organizations and the Democratic Organization of the Afar Red Sea, which, for various reasons, did not participate in the Nairobi forum, but after a fruitful engagement in which they stressed the importance of inclusiveness, they have decided to welcome the initiative and participate in the upcoming meeting.
At the end of the meeting the Ad Hoc Contact Organ expressed its thanks and appreciation to everyone who supported and contributed, in thought and wishes, in furthering the objectives of the consultative forum among all the political forces, and especially thanked those who contributed to the success of this meeting.
The Ad Hoc Contact Organ
National Consultative Conference–Nairobi Declaration
April 4, 2016