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Sudan committee sacks 79 SUNA employees, seizes lands, property of former regime figures in White Nile state

September 12 - 2021 KHARTOUM / ED DAMAZIN
Emblem of Sudan’s Committee for Dismantling the June 30 1989 Regime and Recovering Stolen Funds
Emblem of Sudan’s Committee for Dismantling the June 30 1989 Regime and Recovering Stolen Funds

Sudan’s Empowerment Removal Committee (ERC*) has dismissed 79 employees of the official Sudan News Agency (SUNA) in a decision on Saturday. The committee has also issued a decision to recover 2,376 feddans** of land in White Nile state, and cancelled the contract on the Hedayeb Scheme in El Jebelein locality, White Nile state, which was concluded in April 2017 with a company with links to the ousted Al Bashir regime.

SUNA’s own reports confirm the committee’s decision to the services of 79 employees. This represents 27 per cent of the total staff compliment of the agency, which is about 290 employees, which include administrative and office staff, journalists, and engineers.

During the Al Bashir regime, the agency was strictly controlled by the Sudan’s National Intelligence Security Services (NISS) and the ruling National Congress Party (NCP).

In May, The Director of Information in Khartoum state, El Tayeb Saadeldin, was arrested on the orders of the committee for alleged involvement in leaking state information to “an active group affiliated to the ousted Al Bashir regime”.

It is alleged that Saadeldin, who was appointed as Director of Information in Khartoum state under the previous regime, and continued to hold the position until his arrest, “continued to communicate actively with elements in the dissolved National Congress Party”.

Lands recovered

Also on Saturday, the committee issued a decision on recovery of 2,376 feddans (123,504 km²) of land in the White Nile state, “which were obtained by the use of influence and authority”.

The decision includes the recovery of 500 feddans in Wad El Zaki area from the former Speaker of the Parliament Ibrahim Ahmed Omar, 150 feddans at Edd El Sheikh Ali area from former Vice President Ali Osman Taha, 100 feddans at El Sheikh Hussein from Ahmed Haroun (former chairman of deposed regime’s ruling National Congress Party and one of the five Sudanese officials indicted by the International Criminal court (ICC) for war crimes and crimes against humanity), 150 feddans at El Ashir and Um Kereisa from the deputy speaker of the parliament in the ousted regime, Mohamed Hasan El Amin, 50 feddans from the former general police director, Hashim Osman El Hussein, 32 feddans at Sheikh El Hussein from former head of the security service Mohamed Atta El Moula Abbas at Sheikh El Hussein, 45 feddans at El Ashir and Wad El Sheikh areas from the director of the office of ousted vice – president Ali Osman Mohamed Taha, 25 feddans from Haj Majid Suwar at Wad Bilal area and 50 feddans at El Ashir from his brother Hafez Mohamed Suwar.

The decision also included the recovery of 30 feddans at Wad Bilal area from the former Wali (governor) and minister in the ousted regime, Eisa Bashari, 50 feddans from a former Wali Ahmed Khamis Bakhit, 50 feddans a former Wali Mohamed Nourallah El Tijani, 60 feddans at Edd El Sheikh area from Mohamed El Khanjar El Tayeb, 50 feddans at El Sheikh El Hussein area from the former minister Faisal Hammad Abdallah, 50 feddans at El Ashir area from a former minister of finance, 25 feddans at Um Kereisha area from a commissioner in the state El Shazali Eisa Hamad.

The committee also issued a decision on the recovery of 88 housing land plots representing an area of 35,200 square meters from the leading figure Ahmed El Fashashoya, who was a former state minister in the ousted regime.

The decision stipulated that the recovered lands shall be forfeit to the state, and re-registered under the name of the Republic of Sudan.

El Hedayeb Scheme contract cancelled

In third decision on Saturday, the committee cancelled the contract on El Hedayeb Scheme in El Jebelein locality in White Nile state, which was concluded in April 2017 as a partnership contract with Rakaz International Investment Company, “composed of a group of elements belonging to the ousted regime”.

An investigation by the committee revealed that these elements have signed a contract with Al Bashir’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Ali Karti for a period of 25 years.

* The Committee for Dismantling the June 30 1989 Regime, Removal of Empowerment and Corruption, and Recovering Public Funds was formed in November 2019 after the transitional government approved a law to dismantle the institutions set-up by the regime of Omar Al Bashir and his National Congress Party (NCP). Since then, the Committee has been instrumental in breaking the party’s grip on the political scene and state resources. However, many officials linked with the former regime are still deployed on state and locality levels.

** A feddan is an old farmland measure unit, and equals 51,98 km².

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