Sudan: Billionaire Ibrahim Calls On Al-Bashir to Quit

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir

Khartoum — beleaguered President, Omar al-Bashir, and his administration to leave office in the wake of rising anti-government protests.

The British-based telecommunications pioneer (aged 72) is the first high-profile figure to urge the longtime leader to vacate his position.

He blamed the government of al-Bashir (75) of the economic crisis that has triggered nationwide demonstrations.

"70 percent of the budget [in Sudan] is spent on security, armed forces and militias. It is no wonder that the country is going backwards. To be able to manage to buy food - even bread - has become difficult," said the founder and chairman of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation.

"The message is clear... they [government] have been rejected now, completely rejected by the people. This is everywhere, in all the towns in Sudan people are coming out and saying: enough is enough."

Ibrahim recommended that a transitional government assumes leadership of the North African country.

"Please, accept a peaceful transition of power and go in peace," he stated.

The Mo Ibrahim Foundation was established in 2006 with a focus on the critical importance of leadership and governance in Africa.

Its formation coincided with problems afflicting his country of birth.

In power since a coup in 1989, Bashir is accused of presiding over a government that has wrecked Sudan's economy.

Security forces have killed at least 40 people have been killed in the latest protests.

Al-Bashir this week insisted he would not quit.

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