By: Dr Alhagi Manta Drammeh (PGCerTHE, FHEA, FRSA, UK)
Associate Professor at Al-Maktoum College of Higher Education, UK
The constitutional declaration agreed between the Military Council and the Alliance for Freedom and Change is indeed an important turning point in the history of Sudan. This historical event heralds the end of a dawn and the beginning of a new dawn that has effectively ended thirty (30) years of dictatorship, tyranny and autocratic rule. It has ended self-perpetuating rule and exploitation of religion for self-aggrandizement at the expense of the poor people of Sudan. Omar al-Bashir brought poverty and war in Sudan. Under his misrule, Southern Sudan seceded from Sudan to declare independence. Other regions such as Darfur, Kurdufan and Blue Nile all waged war against the central authority of the state because of marginalization and economic and political disparity. It was feared that they will also secede following the independence declaration by Southern Sudan. During the 30 years of dictatorship millions of Sudanese were either internally displaced or migrated to other parts of the world. Sudan is a rich country with a huge potential to transition into a state characterised by good governance and the rule of law. Overall, Sudanese people are civil and kind. This is something I personally experienced when I was there thirty years ago as a student. Despite poverty, they were willing to share the little they had. Above all, Sudan is endowed with intellectuals and abundant human and natural resources if used judiciously the country can be transformed dramatically. With this agreement, I believe we will soon witness a new political era in Sudan where Sudanese from all parts of the world will be wiling to play their role in this transformation and indeed conversation to turn around the country. Now that the agreement has been reached, the transitional government headed by a Prime Minster has the mammoth task of injecting life to the already stagnant economy and to rebuild dysfunctional and paralysed state intuitions. During the transition, a new Constitution will be drafted to guide Sudan and delineate the different powers and authorities within the new state. The main challenge will be ending war in regions and to include them in the new political process. Signs are positive that cease-fire has been announced by leaders of the war factions to give the new pollical dispensation a chance. I think this is a great opportunity and moment for the new Sudanese government to be formed before the end of August to capitalize on the momentum to ensure that peace and justice are achieved through a comprehensive package and not on ad-hoc basis. Sudan has suffered a lot and now it deserves to eat the fruits of the seven months of sacrifices and protests leading to loss of lives and injuries. Sudan is now on course to be removed from the list of countries that sponsor terrorism. The New Government is expected to forge a balanced and respectable foreign policy with its neighbours and the international community. Now that the agreement has been signed, the protest movement is to rebuild and rehabilitate. It is now going be the Government to execute policies. It is to rebuild the economy and institutions during the transition until elections are called in three years’ time. It is a testament that Africans can resolve their own problems with African initiatives.
I salute the pivotal role of the African Union and Ethiopia. I must say that the culprits who terrorized civilians must be brought to justice. The blood and sweat of the gallant sons and daughters of Sudan will not go in vain. Long Live the Sudan and Long Live the People of Sudan!