Sudan: Weekly Press Columns Digest

19 September 2021
analysis

Khartoum — The issues mostly discussed in the week's press commentaries and editorials include: The warning by the newly appointed Governor of Darfur region Minni Arko Minnawi that he would overstep the central government in effecting the security arrangements included in the Juba peace pacts, the continuing electric power crisis and the encounter between the Minister of Higher Education with one of the main figures of the ousted government of Omar Albashir.

About the warning by Darfur Governor Minni Arko Minnawi that he would carry out the security arrangements on his own, and without waiting for the central government, wrote the Editor of Alentibaha (the awakening) news paper Ahmed Yousif Altai:

The Darfur Governor, Mr. Minnawi has warned he was to overstep the central government in effecting the security arrangements, if Khartoum would continue with what he called "its intransigence" in implementing the security arrangements stipulated in the Juba peace accords.

First of all, we should stress upon the need to implement the security arrangements provided within the Juba peace pacts. That is an obligation that should be fulfilled.

But Mr. Mnnawi's threat that he would skip the central government and effect the security arrangements all by himself is a wrongdoing, a real sin.

The public and the government would have ignored this clumsy threat if Mr. Minnawi was still a rebel "in the jungle." But now that he is a statesman, a governor of five Sudanese states, such an irresponsible threat would not go down easily.

Didn't Minnawi think that such a statement can be understood as an official declaration of a new mutiny against the central government. And did Minnawi mean by overstepping the central government to act independently from the central government?

Mr. Minnawi has to keep it in mind thoroughly well that he is now wearing the cloak of a statesman and that the state and its men have regulations and principles of conduct and ways of thinking different from all the other people. They have a strategic outlook that unifies and does not divide, in particular under such conditions as we living now: killings, massacres and lawlessness in Darfur.

Finally I would like to say to Mr. Minnawi "you are sitting on a barrel of explosives that is possible to explode any moment. Look around you in the region you are ruling. There are some who set handcuffs on your hands and challenge the resettlement of the displaced and strive to return thousands of them to the IDP camps after their farms were destroyed, their livestock was killed and their children annihilated. Did you hear about that? You are now in need for the central government to stand by your side, not to threaten or defy it and send to it dangerous messages that can carry the worst of scenarios.

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About the plaguing electric supply shortages wrote Dr. Zuhair Alsarraj in the daily journal Aljareeda (the newspaper):

Each passing day the electricity crisis gets worse, instead of the breakthrough we are promised to take place.

Our collegue Ms. Leena Abdalla has visited the Khartoum North Thermal Power Station and talked to those concerned there and came out with the most depressing remarks: the government is very careless about the situation at the Station. There is lack in the required spare parts, fuel shortage and if it were not for the tremendous effort of the workers (most of them qualified, enthusiastic youths), the Station would have collapsed and gone out of service, leaving Khartoum in total darkness.

The amount of money required to repair the Station does not exceed $ten million, a sum not that big to leave the Government with its hands tied. If the Government was serious and willful, it would have provided this sum in a short while.

The Government would have provided this required sum by stemming the buying of luxury vehicles and furniture and reducing payments for senior government officials. The Prime Minister, the Finance Minister and all the government leading figures should have issued firm clear regulations to stop spending on unnecessary items even if the general budget would be confined to Chapter One (salaries and wages) alone. Importation should also have been confined to wheat, medicines, fuel and agriculture and industry inputs. But the Government is not serious in the tackling of crises. The citizen does not concern them in anyway, nor the situation in the country. That is due to the absence of a body that watches and punishes.

When I say the Government, I mean all the government bodies, civilian and military, in particular those which monopolize the state's wealth and turn it towards their own interests. How many times I have spoken about the Army's companies, those of the Rapid Support Forces and all the other institutions in uniform. But nobody would listen or move. On the horizon there are hikes in the price of electricity, a complete liberalization of this commodity. There is also a tendency in the government to raise its hands entirely from electric production in the few coming years leaving the citizen at the mercy of of the heartless capitalism.

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Writer, Dr. Murtada Alghali has criticized the recent encounter by the Minister of Higher Education, Prof. Entisar Sighayroun, with the former Minister of Health in the State of Khartoum, seen as one of the pillars of the ousted regime of General Omar Albashir. He said:

That is a grave mistakes (a double foul) that cannot be whitewashed by an apology. It is a stain on the wall of the Revolution, an undeserved gift to the remnants of the Bashir regime. We do not say that out of exaggeration: This man , Dr. Mamoon Hummaida, is from the type most hostile to the Revolution, blatant not clandestine!

His animosity towards the Revolution had taken him so far as to shut his University's doors in the face of his students, leaving them at the mercy of the four- drive vehicles of the government militias and the Salvation Government's beasts who chased the students like hungry wolves.

That is in addition to his (plentiful) animosity towards anything that is in the interest of the Sudanese public. He broke the backbone of the Khartoum Teaching Hospital, tried to wipe it out of the Earth's surface to the interest of his (tourist medication).

He used to behave like a divine ruler in his ministerial post, never looking back at the public interests, in fact bragging about what he was doing.

Academics and university professors and those with relation to higher education say (in recurrent testimonies) that that the man had stood by the Salvation Government's conspiracy against the University of Khartoum. He supported the awkward and hasty and politicized Arabicization of higher education. But the same man had refused to Arabicize his private university, opposing what he had approved in the University of Khartoum.

Now the conscientious question is: If Arabicization was made in the way in which it was effected, why didn't he follow it in his private university. (the University for Medical Sciences and Technology)? And if what he had adopted in his university was the correct thing to do, why did he deprive the University of Khartoum from it when he was its Vice Chancellor?

You will never find in the supporters of the Salvation Government and its beneficiaries other than deception and profiteering at the expense of the nation and the future of its generations.

Minister Sighayroun's meeting with this man is a complex bone fracture that cannot be remedied by a ministerial statement. She could have just visited the university and met the students and others. But what is it that obliged her to sit with a man who was in the ranks of the Salvation Government when bullets were sounding over the heads of the students, in fact inside their bodies. This is an indication of the absence of political sensitivity among some ministers and officials of the transitional period who behave according to their personal relationships with the Salvation Government's symbols.

They all of them should know that they do not represent themselves in public office. They represent the Revolution and, so, should calculate their steps carefully. The Minister sitting with Hummaida is no less than sitting with the ousted Bashir or Dr. Nafi' Ali Nafi' for consultation and making acquaintances, as if nothing has happened!!

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