Local Sudanese vote for possible freedom - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Local Sudanese vote for possible freedom

ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) --  People of Sudan, across America and in southeastern Minnesota are gathering to register for January's referendum.

After nearly two decades of warfare, this vote will decide whether the southern half of the country will separate from the north.

Over 200 Sudanese from Rochester alone  traveled to Omaha, Nebraska to register for the January 9th vote.

"Every individual would be free. We'd be able to speak your mind and live free and to worship free," said Kaman Mayen, a Sudanese from Rochester.

The southern Sudanese would be given a voice. That is if voters decide to split the country of Sudan.

"If there was such a thing as unity, the problem that confronts us today wouldn't even exist," exclaimed Mayen.

More than two million Sudanese wouldn't be dead, due to more than 20 years of civil war between the north and the south.

For the past 6 years the country has not seen any turmoil, due to a 2005 peace agreement.

The upcoming vote will determine the future for many.

Kaman Mayen, along with others from Sudan, traveled to Nebraska to register to vote.

He said people want their freedom.

"It's a government that's saying you're not supposed to lead. You can't do things we do. You can't have your kids go to school. You can't worship your gods. You can't have a hospital or better treatments then we do," said Mayen.

Pastor Simon Ter Dup preaches at Zion Lutheran Church in Albert Lea.

He said the south is rich in resources.

"Everything that can supply the country is in the south part of the country, south Sudan. The oil is there, the water is there. Everything is on the other side. North Sudan is a desert, there is nothing there."

So, if the country splits, will it stop future wars?

Mayen told us he doesn't think so, but either way, he is proud of his home.

"South Sudan is my home. South Sudan will always be my home. Nothing will ever change that," said Mayen.



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