16-October-2021

Weekly Press Columns Digest

Weekly Press Columns Digest

 KHARTOUM (Sudanow) - Follows are summations of press commentaries that tackled three of Sudan’s outstanding events last week. These events were the closure of the strategic Khartoum-Port Sudan highway by the adherents of the high council of the Eastern Sudanese Bija tribes chiefdoms to press for regional demands, the country’s economic situation and the alleged plot by the remnants of the Bashir regime to destabilize the country on the occasion of 30 June, the day when Bashir seized power in a military coup. 

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Commenting on the closure of the Port Sudan-Khartoum highway by the high Bija council, wrote Mr. Osman Mohammad Hassan in the electronic publication Alrakooba (the Shack):

This Bija council has by far  overstepped the social prerogatives availed to the tribal chiefdoms, when it posed itself  as a political entity by insisting upon the release of (all) persons detained in a plot to destabilize the country, and not just those from its own Bija clan. It closed the strategic Port Sudan-Khartoum Highway and prevented railway traffic to and from the Port. It has suffocated the entire Sudan, depriving it from the exportation and importation of goods, a matter that could create scarcities on the local market, increasing the economic hypertension the country now lives under. This could cause the
poor of the country to die of hunger or disease or both.

My word to Sheikh Tirik, the Bija high council chief,
is that, Mr. Tirik: this is not the right way for tribal chiefs to behave... putting their subjects on the way to death. This council is disgruntled by its marginalization for decades, so it feels. It went out demonstrating when a new governor was appointed for Kasala State without its approval. The council is also unhappy that it was not consulted during the Juba peace talks on the appointment of a chairman of Eastern Sudan delegates to those Juba talks. As a result the council has stalled the Eastern Sudan peace deal up to now. It is also furious about the corruption that accompanied the spending of sums put in the fund for the reconstruction of Eastern Sudan from a Kuwaiti grant .

These are some of the causes of the council’s wrath which it seeks to vent by declaring war against the country, closing the Highway and blocking railways traffic.

The fate of Sudanese should not be allowed to be decided upon by such conduct. If not brought to book, such decisions will entail  a high political, economic and social cost for Sudan.

It is also unwise to detain Chieftain Tirik under the felony of declaring war, while the entire Eastern Sudan is but a container loaded with high explosives.     

In anyway there is no other way than wise negotiation, to reach a solution that serves the interests of Sudan, and at the same time does not compromise the Bija Council’s interests. But on one condition: the state should open up these talks in a manner that does not persuade other groups to follow Tirik’s steps in obtaining what they see as rights.
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About the present economic situation, wrote Professor Abdellatif Alboony in the daily newspaper Alsudani (The Sudanese):

These Westerners, Americans and Europeans and their followers in the international political and financial institutions, have done a lot to boost the transitional government. They have taken our country out of its isolation, normalized our relations with the international and regional financial institutions, banks, funds and so on with bridge loans and others. They took wide steps towards debt relief, telling us that our country is now like any other country in the world and can receive loans, grants and investments from all of the world. For its part, our government did all they  
asked for, however harsh it could have been. But there is one thing these Westerners did not do, though they knew it was the most important thing to do. That is putting a few dollars in cash in the Central Bank, to redress the budget deficit for the Government to avoid buying dollars from the black market. At that time the Sudanese pound would recover from its illness and the monstrous inflation that ruined the Sudanese houses would cool down.

They know pretty well that the lifebuoy is a dollar deposit or a grant to be put in the Central Bank. This financial cushion is not for balancing the budget alone, it is a stepping stone for any economic liberalization.

Then there remains the maddening questions: Why didn’t these Westerners throw the lifebuoy to this government, which they love that much and do not want a replacement for it? Do they want to put the people at stake? Do they want to elevate the government and at the same time bring the people to its knees? Do they want to keep the government under continuous pressure? Do they want to block the way for any political change?

There is something fishy about this. What we say here is that the financial cushion is the crux of the  economic reform. They have done that to all the countries that applied but little of the IMF prescription. Why didn’t they do it for us. We have done all they have asked for. It seems there is a political dimension. The economy is innocent here.  
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About the government announcement that it has unveiled a cell belonging to the  defunct regime of ousted President Omar Albashir, lead by his spy chief Salah Abdalla Goash and a senior army general to blow up official locations, including the Ministry of Defense, wrote Mr. Bakri Alsa’egh under the title: Did the exchange of criminals agreement between Sudan and Egypt except Salah Goash?:

Ever since the announcement in the press that Salah Goash is wanted and until now we did not hear about Goash anything but evil and that he is working at his ease to destabilize the country. Anyone who has read the newspapers during April 2019 until this latest announcement about the terrorist cell, would notice that there is a lot of news that Goash is in Egypt.
Some Sudanese who live in Egypt strongly confirm that Goash is in Egypt, specifically in Cairo. Most Sudanese living in the United Arab Emirates confirm having seen Goash in Dubai, doing wide commercial business. Some Sudanese in Turkey are sure that Goash is in Ankara, having a relation with the outcasts of the defunct regime.

If Goash is in Cairo, why didn’t the Egyptian authorities turn him in to Khartoum under the accusations of financial corruption, money laundering and, very recently,  terror acts and trying to destabilize the country? Why does Cairo keep him, though it knows he is the cause of tension between the two countries?!!
The latest piece of news about Salah Goash (4 July) says well placed sources in the Attorney General Chamber (represented in its international cooperation unit)  have taken all the necessary steps to repatriate Salah Goash from abroad via the Interpol. The sources said the unit has other dossiers about him in a number of countries and that he is wanted in a number of criminal cases, beside this terror case.
If we suppose that Goash was put under arrest or he voluntarily surrendered himself to the Attorney general, will he be actually tried? Or he will stay as a guest in Kooper Prison just like Bakri Hassan Salih, Abdelrahim Mohammad Hussein and Nafi’ Ali Nafi’ without any trial. Ever since April 2019 we have seen nothing tangible from the Attorney General on the ground about the fate of these men!!

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