Several regions in Sudan these days are witnessing an unprecedented rise in the prices of goods, food and fuel. Members of the national parliament from eastern Sudan warned for the consequences of Sudan’s “negative economic policies”.
A listener in El Geneina, the capital of west Darfur, complained to Radio Dabanga about the “huge price hikes these days”. “The price of a small plate of millet has risen to SDG7.50 ($1.30), a kg of sugar to SDG8 ($1.40), a pair of transistor batteries to SDG5 ($0.90), a plate of dried tomatoes to SDG20 ($3.50), a kg of mutton to SDG40 ($7), a piece of laundry soap to SDG3 ($0.52), 45kg of okra SDG1,200 ($210), and the petrol stations now sell a gallon of petrol for SDG45 ($7.85).”
Petrol sold by militia
Citizens in Kutum town in North Darfur also complained of the price increases. A kg of sugar has risen to SDG8 ($1.40), a tin of cooking oil to SDG260 ($45), and a pound of palm dates to SDG10 ($1.75).
A Kutum resident told Radio Dabanga that the price of a gallon of petrol has mounted to SDG40 ($7), adding that there is no fuel station in the town anymore. “The only petrol station burned to ashes a month ago.” He pointed out that fuel is brought to the town by government-backed militia and sold at high prices, “as the government is not able to provide us with fuel, it seems”.
The resident added that the provision of electricity in Kutum has remained stalled for more than a year, describing the general economic and living conditions as dire.
Eastern Sudan Caucus
Sources from Wad Madani, the capital of Gezira state, reported a scarcity of a number of commodities, in particular bread, cooking gas, and fuel. The crisis of fuel and cooking gas in Gedaref state started four days ago. All but one petrol station in Gedaref city were closed. The price of a cooking gas cylinder has risen to SDG 80 ($14).
The Eastern Sudan Caucus at the Sudanese parliament criticized the severe petrol crisis in Kassala state, making it impossible for the farmers to continue tending their farmlands, member of parliament, Karrar Mohamed Ali commented, explaining that the farmers need diesel for their irrigation pumps.
The eastern members of parliament blamed the government of being incapable to run the country, saying that the recent cabinet changes have not brought any competent ministers. The MPs from eastern Sudan stated that the government’s economic policies as based on “negativity”, and warned that “these policies will lead the country to crises and famine”.
File photo (Radio Dabanga)
US Dollar price rises on Sudan’s black market (5 January 2014)