The secretary-general of the Sudanese Islamic Movement has claimed that the government led by President Omar Al Bashir has turned the Sudanese into wealthy people. Several people found his speech “provocative, especially in this time of hardship”.
Secretary-General of the Islamic Movement party El Zubair Ahmed El Hassan said that the current government have created a “much better economic situation” and “created many opportunities for citizens, including a number of Islamists”.
El Zubair held a speech on Sudanese television. He claimed that poverty rates have not increased in Sudan and said the rates have decreased “very much”.
Journalist Mujahid Abdallah described El Zubair’s speech as “provocative, especially at this time. The speech is not related to reality, because El Zubair is an Islamist who enjoys power, and stands far from the concerns and suffering of ordinary people.”
Abdallah told Radio Dabanga that the Islamic movement in Sudan has denied its principles. “The result is extreme poverty and a looming famine.”
Prices for food and consumer goods have doubled or tripled during the current economic hardship. People in Sudan are unable to buy gifts or lambs for their children and families for Eid El Adha, the festival of sacrifice.
End 2017, the Sudanese government decided on a package of austerity measures in an attempt to address the huge gap in its finances. Its priorities did not change: more than 70 per cent of its spending is still allocated to the defence and security sectors, less than 10 per cent will be spent on health and education.
The customs duties were raised by more than 200 per cent – which immediately affected the prices of most of the goods in early January. The government further decided to liberalise the flour market which lead to the doubling of the bread prices.