NEGOTIATION: THE PROTOCOL FOR DEFUSING POLITICAL TENSIONS AND PROMOTING BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT IN THE NILE VALLEY REGIONS

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“Organized murder is war, and though we demonstrate against a particular war, the nuclear, or any other kind of war, we have never demonstrated against war

J. Krishnamurti

In our recent featured insights, we outlined some of the key global trends that may impact your business wherever you may be. Such trends included among others political instabilities and legal matters. Although these factors are generally easy to identify, human beings have demonstrated their incapability to effectively respond to them despite previous experiences.

Today, one of the countries along the Nile valley intends to implement tough laws to combat terrorism. In this connection, Egypt has approved today laws to deal with insurgencies in its northern Sinai areas, hoping that these will reduce political and terror risks to its regime. This may appear important in the law books. However, the practical intention of these statutes needs to be verified through peaceful means and it is crucial to note that in most cases wars or conflicts start due to lies.

The use of lies normally compound the matter; and as has more often been the case, meeting fire with fire may not be the best way forward. Classical cases in the Nile valley region are the current running battles between opponents in South Sudan, where thousands of innocent people have been killed following determined onslaughts from both sides. These actions have defied numerous attempts for a negotiated settlement.

The failures of the negotiated settlements do not mean that these approaches are weak or irrelevant. It is because in most cases when conflicting parties come to the negotiating table, they choose the non-African approach, the violent approach. The parties have no intentions or meeting of the minds to resolve the ongoing conflicts, but to be the winner.

It needs to be emphasized that the negotiated approach is not about losers and winners; but a win-win scenario. It is about bringing the tensions to normal situation that may have gone out of hand. It is also about peace and justice; not terrorism by one over the other, or for both parties.

Peace is an important business dynamic. There seems to be a relationship between peace and thriving business in some countries of the world. This means therefore that, peaceful environment is necessary for good business growth and this may have a connection with Egypt’s current agility performance on the emerging market index.

Having a conducive environment for business is not only good for Egypt, but for all other countries within the Nile valley. For business to thrive here will depend fundamentally on how political conflicts of any kind will be handled, The militaristic approach Egypt is planning to follow with its terror laws is not only likely to bounce back as has been noted in South Sudan, but also anti-developmental. Doing this is like putting fire initiated by petrol with more petrol, rather than using water to cool and kill it of. History should have taught mankind over the years that the best way to settle conflicts is to follow a sensible approach of negotiation with a cool head.

When world war I was fought what did mankind learn? Apparently none! Later world war II came and passed by and human beings have not learnt a single lesson either, despite massive destruction and reconstruction that followed. It now means that the human mind acts like a reflex when it comes to solving conflicts. It sticks to what it knows best and chooses that which seems to offer some kind of a pattern; a regrettable pattern anyway!

Let business benefit from a country that applies a more sensible and realistic conflict resolution mechanism, rather than those that jump to short term emotionally motivated approach and worship violence and destruction.

 

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Okumu p'Okech Luryan

Okumu p'Okech Luryan, Managing Partner, Noh-Vald Consultancy.
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