Editorial: One year after, Sudan’s PM Hamdok has done well
One year into his scheduled three-year transitional term in office, the verdict of the Board of Editors of The Difference Newspaper is that Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok of Sudan has done well.
The technocrat who was head-hunted to lead the National Unity Government that had emerged following the exit of ousted President, Omar Al-Bashir has chiefly been able to stabilise the affairs of state and commenced the process of restoring the nation’s long battered credibility in the comity of nations.
A well-respected professional, he had served at the International Labour Organisation, the African Development Bank and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, UNECA, among other well-regarded postings. In 2018, he rejected an offer from the Al-Bashir administration to serve as Finance Minister.
Coming into office as Prime Minister of Sudan after many years of a crippling dictatorship and months of street protests and grave national dissension, the first thing that the administration had to do was to follow up on the implementation of the terms of negotiations that had preceded it, to the tune that the government must be inclusive and representative of all shades of Sudanese national life. This led to the inclusion of women and youth representatives in the administration, a first of sorts in the nation’s recent history.
Next, the administration had to ensure that the larger-than-life role of the military in the nation was minimised. While the jury is still out on how far this has been executed, the fact that senior military officers are not today strutting all over the place and making public pronouncements on all matters under the sun is proof positive that some progress has been recorded in this respect.
After that is the sticky issue of what to do with the ousted President, and particularly as it has to do with the request by the International Criminal Court, ICC that the former President be handed over to it for genocide and war crimes prosecution. An anniversary broadcast by Hamdok has reaffirmed in plain view that his administration would cooperate with the ICC in this regard.
And then there is the issue of the long-standing Darfur crisis. On this, talks have continued with expectations that a first tranche of peace agreements may be signed in the next one week.
From our observatory as watchers of developments across the continent and Pan-African diaspora, we commend the progress made so far in Sudan and encourage the Hamdok administration to even do much more. In this respect, we request more work on the economy front and a firm commitment to ensuring that the three year transitional mandate handed over to the administration is respected and diligently adhered to.