THE NEWS Line Editorial Board sent its revolutionary New Year greetings on January 1st to the workers and youth in Sudan who are continuing their revolt against the military dictatorship with mass demonstrations demanding ‘No military rule!’ that forced the resignation of Prime Minister Hamdok on Sunday!
The greetings stated: ‘Sudan has been in the midst of an enormous economic and political crisis since the masses – with women at the forefront – rose up in 2019 to overthrow the US/UK backed dictatorship of Omar al-Bashir.
‘Since then, the military have used murderous force against the masses, with hundreds killed, in a US-sponsored desperate effort to strengthen and maintain the grip of the generals and their tame bourgeois political allies. The Sudanese people are now rising up again.
‘Having brought down one dictator they are now prepared to bring down the generals and the bourgeois politicians and go forward to take the power. 2022 will be the year for the victory of the Sudanese workers and youth.’
In fact, the masses did not wait for that encouragement – they were already in action. On Sunday January 2nd they forced Sudan’s Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok to resign after another day of massive protests rocked the capital Khartoum.
Thousands marched denouncing his deal to share power with the army, who’d staged a coup in October, and to normalise relations with Israel.
Hamdok’s deal with the army was seen as yet another capitulation to the Sudanese military, which the masses of the working class and the youth were not prepared to allow, so they took to the streets.
Chanting ‘power to the people!’ tens of thousands of workers and youth marched calling for a return to full civilian rule. The military forces again responded with force, leaving two people dead.
However, Hamdok was forced out by this mass movement leaving the Sudanese army without the political cover that they desperately needed him to give.
In a televised address, Hamdok said the country was at a ‘dangerous turning point that threatens its whole survival’. He claimed he had tried his best to stop Sudan from ‘sliding towards disaster’ but that ‘despite everything that has been done to reach a consensus … it has not happened.’
Civilian and military leaders had made the power-sharing agreement after the army staged a coup on 25 October 2021 and initially placed Prime Minister Hamdok under house arrest.
However, Hamdok had helped negotiate a deal to ‘forgive’ some of Sudan’s debts but this involved removing fuel subsidies, leading to huge price increases – and the anti-government mass protests resumed immediately.
Under the agreement reached between the army and Hamdok in November, the reinstated prime minister was supposed to lead a cabinet of technocrats until elections were held. The mass protests against the military resumed, and were violently suppressed.
Workers saw through Hamdok and that his reinstatement was to help legitimatise the military takeover. They would not allow it and, despite at least two deaths of demonstrators last Sunday, they forced Hamdok out of power, leaving the military with no political cover at all.
Thousands of people were on the streets of the capital Khartoum and the city of Omdurman on Sunday, chanting and calling on the military to leave politics. On social media, activists said 2022 will be ‘the year of the continuation of the resistance’.
Tens of thousands took to streets last Sunday. Defying Sudan’s generals they chanted: ‘They cannot kill us all!’
More than 50 people have been killed during protests since the military coup, including the two on Sunday, according to the pro-democracy Sudan Central Doctors’ Committee. The masses must now mobilise in their millions.
With the working class in the lead, the mass of the rural population and the urban middle class must be mobilised to establish a ‘Workers and Farmers Government’ that will run Sudan for the benefit of the working class and the rural population.
Such a leap forward will change the situation in Africa and the Middle East forever!