Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and the Sudanese Communist Party (SCP) met on Saturday to discuss ways to carry out the goals of the December Revolution, including rejoining the former regime’s Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC).
Last June, Hamdok issued a plea for the revolution’s political forces and armed organizations to unify in order to put the revolution’s slogans of freedom, peace, and justice into practice. The organizations making up the FFC, with the exception of the SCP and an armed force led by Minni Minnawi, responded enthusiastically to his plea. He also met with the SCP for the first time on August 12 to discuss difficult issues and criticism of government programs, particularly IMF-supported economic reforms.
The two sides discussed issues such as cooperation with the International Criminal Court (ICC), trade unions law, security situation and IDPs in Darfur, census and general election preparation, landownership and foreign investments, and legal reforms, according to a statement released after Hamdok cabinet’s second meeting on Saturday. “On the ICC, the meeting agreed to hand over the wanted persons to the Court, and to implement the decision of the Council of Ministers in this respect,” said the cabinet.
On Darfur, the council concluded that it was critical to address the security situation and improve the displaced persons’ condition. The parties also agreed that before the general elections, a population census should be conducted to account for the war’s demographic changes.
The SCP left the FFC in November 2020 and called for Hamdok’s administration to be deposed in April 2021.
The socialists refused to take responsibility for the controversial economic measures. The communists also expressed their opposition to the Juba peace process, which excluded the FFC forces and allowed the armed components a prominent role. “The government did not develop a plan to address the roots of the problem (in Darfur)” said Siddiq Youssif a leading figure of the party, “rather it focused on reaching an agreement with the armed groups based on the power and wealth sharing” he stated.
The prime minister notified the PSC leaders of his plan to establish a ministerial committee to study the communists’ contentious trade union statute. During the first meeting, the law had already been discussed. The two sides also discussed the civil service and agreed to keep jobs from becoming politicized. In terms of land ownership and foreign investment, the two parties agreed to protect landowners’ rights.
Hamdok “affirmed Sudan’s welcome to foreign investments that serve the national interests of the Sudanese people”. The government recently intervened to overturn a decision made by the Northern State in April to confiscate an agricultural region of over 40,000 hectares that the old administration had allotted to Bahrain in 2014. The state government claimed at the time that the Gulf state had not developed the land.
The meeting was attended by Hamdok’s political adviser Yasir Arman, media adviser Faisal Mohamed Saleh, and le cabinet executive director Adam Hiraika, who all came from Hamdok’s office.