Sudan Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok has decided to resign as mass protests in Khartoum continue for another day. Thousands of citizens protested against his deal with the military, who took over the country in a coup on 25 October 2021. Previously Hamdok argued that he could save Sudan’s frail transition to democracy by sharing power with the coup leaders. However, the pro-democracy activists rejected the deal, and even Hamdok could not form a new government. Hamdok’s resignation gives absolute power to the military.
Demonstrators called for a return to full civilian government with chants like “power to the people”, but the military responded with a violent crackdown. According to the reports, more than 55 people have been killed since the army took over, while hundreds have been wounded.
Sudan Prime Minister Says He Tried His Best
The resignation of the Sudan Prime Minister is yet another blow to the country’s democratic transition after the Sudanese Revolution 2019 led to the overthrow of long-term authoritarian President Omar al-Bashir. Hamdok appeared on TV to address the nation and said that the country was at a dangerous point that threatened its entire existence. He acknowledged that despite his best efforts to the contrary, he has failed to stop Sudan from “sliding towards disaster”.
Hamdok, a former United Nations official and an economist, is widely respected by the international community. He became prime minister in 2019 under a power-sharing deal with the army, promising multiparty elections in 2023. However, the military and civilian government ties eventually tattered as the army refused to relinquish power. Coup leaders removed Hamdok and placed him under house arrest. It later reinstated him on 21 November 2021 after a deal that required a technocratic cabinet overseen by the military.
Protests Against the Coup
Things got much worse this Sunday, 2 January 2022, when most of the world celebrated New Year. Thousands came out on the streets of Khartoum and Omdurman, directly calling on the army to leave politics alone. According to the reports, Sudan Prime Minister resigned a few hours after the military forces “dispersed” protesters violently and killed 3 of them.
Horrific videos have been making rounds of social media, showcasing how the military has been treating the civilians fighting for democracy.
The protestors carried on despite the harsh security and blockades in Khartoum and Omdurman. Reportedly, the coup had also disrupted internet connections even before the protests began.
No Hopes for Democratic Future
The international community has condemned the violence against protestors, but the critics see it as a routine affair. The military has been beating up civilians, journalists, and activists since October with no interference from the outside world. The Junta will likely appoint a new Sudan Prime Minister, who will obviously be under its influence. Critics widely see the coup as a reestablishment of al-Bashir’s deposed regime.
Sudanese military has undone significant reforms that were made after al-Bashir’s exit. According to reports, there is a notable decline in economic progress, foreign aid has been suspended, and intelligence services have been again empowered to arrest any civilian they want.
Army officials have also been going door-to-door to capture the activists and protest organizers ever since taking over Sudan.