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‘Demands of Sudan’s protesters are legitimate’: Al Bashir

April 2 - 2019 KHARTOUM
President Omar Al Bashir of Sudan addresses a crowd in February 2019 (Suna)
President Omar Al Bashir of Sudan addresses a crowd in February 2019 (Suna)

The economic demands that demonstrators have been making for the past months are “legitimate”, the president of Sudan said at an opening session of the parliament on Monday. He renewed the call to the opposition in- and outside Sudan to take part in the peace process.

President Omar Al Bashir vowed to exert every possible effort to achieve peace during this year. The economic challenges affected various sectors which pushed people to go out to express their legitimate demands.

Some, however, have “exploited” this and jumped on the opportunity of the protests “to achieve a radical agenda by spreading the poison of hatred and drive the country into the unknown”, according to the president. These people destroy property and endanger the public order in clear violation of legal controls.

The president renewed the call for opposition inside Sudan and abroad to participate in the peace process.

“We also dissolved the executive organ and formed a new government to carry out special tasks and declared the State of Emergency [...] Further decisions and measures will be taken during the coming few days to enhance the dialogue and prepare the country for the desired transformation.”

End of February, Al Bashir declared a State of Emergency in Sudan and dissolved the federal government and state governments. In six Republican Decrees, the president dissolved the national Council of Ministers, assigned the Secretaries General and Undersecretaries of Ministries to run the work of their ministries, assigned a new ‘government of competencies’, relieved the Walis (governors) of the states, dissolved the governments of the states, and appointed high-ranking police, security, and military officers as the new Walis of the states.

During the speech yesterday, Al Bashir also directed the national government and governors to fund more youth projects related to agricultural and livestock production, small industries, and software through banks and micro-finance funding, in an attempt to provide decent work and housing for young people.

Last week, Sudanese economists revealed the prevalence of a high unemployment rate among youths in the country, whose dissatisfaction may grow ‘and become a security threat’ to the country.

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