Dear Comrades: Members of the Leadership Bureau, Heads of the Movement in the States, Heads of the Secretariat Specialized Offices at home and abroad, Women, Students and Youth Leaders. Greetings to you all.
Let me first express my deepest gratitude and bow my head in tribute to our people, the martyrs of the Sudanese Revolution and all those who have sacrificed themselves over many years, especially the martyrs of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement, the forces of armed struggle and the glorious December Revolution.
After 36 years in the ranks of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army with martyrs and the living, I was honored to work in many positions and represent the Movement in many roles both at home and abroad. The Movement honored me by choosing me as one of its leaders, including as its candidate for the Presidency of the Republic of Sudan in 2010 and as the last candidate to whom the people of both Sudans entrusted their votes.
I was a member of the Movement’s Transitional Leadership Council and its Political Bureau, Deputy Secretary-General, Secretary-General and then Vice-President. I was also Chairperson of its Parliamentary Caucus, Joint Spokesperson for the Constitutional Commission, a member and then Head of the Movement’s negotiating delegation for three decades and Spokesperson for fifteen years, as well as holding several positions within its media portfolio, and one of the leaders of the political alliances that the Movement co-founded over past decades. I was honored to play a role in the three National Conventions in the Movement’s history. I was a member of the Steering Committees of the Movement’s first Convention in Chukudum in 1994 under the chairmanship of the late leader, Yusuf Kowa Mekki, and in the second Convention in 2008 with President Salva Kiir Mayardit and Commander Pagan Amum. I was also one of the founders in establishing the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement – North together with Malik Agar and Abdul Aziz al-Hilu, and again in 2019, I was part of the first Convention of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement, which adopted a correct position on the glorious December Revolution, which was a major focus of its discussion and decisions.
I was also extremely fortunate to have worked closely with the great thinker and leader, the late Dr John Garang de Mabior.
I intend to draw on all these experiences, benefiting from the positive aspects, and taking a critical view of the negative aspects.
I thank you for choosing and mandating me as Chairperson of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-Revolutionary Democratic Current (RDC). I declare my acceptance of this mandate until our Movement holds its first Convention within a year from now. I pledge publicly to consolidate the principle of the peaceful transfer of the executive power in the Movement and to promote the principles of internal democracy, accountability, and transparency. And on leaving my executive post, I am fully committed to work with the new generation of leaders to support the organs of the Movement in implementing their tasks.
I declare before members and leaders of the Movement that I will uphold its Vision and Constitution. Our people, membership of the movement and God are my witness.
Towards a Rebirth, a New Foundation and a New Beginning:
The vision of the New Sudan is a great vision which can solve the dilemmas and issues of nation-building. Since its foundation, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement has raised the slogan of building a new unified, democratic, secular Sudan that achieves social justice, but this has not happened. How and why not? These are issues that we should address at the rebirth of the Movement, making a new start that builds on the positive achievements of the past but takes a critical look at everything that is negative. We should start by admitting without hesitation or shame the mistakes that we made ourselves. I wrote my own intervention in this debate in a pamphlet that was published in 2017 under the title “Towards a Rebirth of the New Sudan Vision. Issues of National Liberation in Today’s World”. That contribution was intended to free the New Sudan vision from closed-mindedness, complacency, ethnocentrism, regionalism, and regressive political tendencies.
The vision of a ‘New Sudan’ should be used to change and unite Sudan, not as a tool to tear it apart.
Issues of Rebuilding and Renewal:
Our Movement is in need of renewal, self-correction, and righting its wrongs by laying bare all issues for serious, committed and democratic discussion, including what the name of the Movement should be.
The Glorious December Revolution is a Pan-Sudanese Revolution
The glorious December Revolution is a pan-Sudanese phenomena that is modelled on the vision of the New Sudan. Its main slogans -freedom, peace, and justice – are in line with the vision of the New Sudan. Our Movement has a new and rare historic opportunity to rebuild and renew itself in the cut and thrust of the political struggle to achieve the goals of the glorious December Revolution.
Our Position on the 25 October Coup
We are working side by side with the daughters and sons of our people to overthrow and defeat the coup d’état, using all means of peaceful and democratic mass action. We are also working to establish a unified action coordination center as an important first step towards a united civilian front for the forces of the revolution. Our revolution needs to maintain this effort both before and after the overthrow of the coup to consolidate the foundations of democratic civilian rule so that military coups become a thing of the past.
The Victory of the Revolution and State Building
The tasks entrusted to the young women and men of the December Revolution are unprecedented in our modern history. Sudan is now a fragile state with deformed institutions, degraded as a plaything in the hands of those who have plundered its resources, forming a looting cartel extending beyond the country’s borders. The forces of the old regime are still capturing the state, its institutions and resources and dream of restoring the corruption wonderland that they have lost. The mass movement will therefore have to shoulder new tasks to ensure the victory of the Revolution by building professional and non-partisan national state institutions.
Building a Single Army that reflects the Country’s Diversity
Building single, professional armed forces that reflect Sudan’s diversity within the framework of a comprehensive project of security and military reform, implementing the security arrangements of the Juba Peace Agreement and completing peace and security arrangements with those who have not yet signed, are all issues that are closely linked to a civilian democratic state.
Equality before the law is Sudan’s top priority and does not allow for any compromise, negotiation or half-measures. It is organically linked to a civilian democratic state, peace, balanced development and social justice.
Reviving the Bonds of National Memory
We stand against the historical amnesia distorting our national memory and for a return to the vision of the New Sudan, at the core of which is unity in diversity, and not its geographical and ethnic division and dualism, which has led to its diminution. Our country is part of the ancient civilizations of the Nile Valley, and we must value our historical and contemporary diversity. The principle of respect for religious beliefs and diversity, of the state standing at an equal distance from all religions, and of the separation of religion and state in a civil democratic state, or however it is articulated, is one of the most important issues of state-building. We call for respect for all religions and for ending injustice towards Sudanese Christians to strengthen our values of fraternity and citizenship.
Transitional Justice and Ending Impunity
Transitional justice, accountability, ending impunity and redress for victims of injustice are key issues for democratic transition, as they are for building a new society.
Our new Leadership Council will include 40% of women members, and our next Convention should seek to increase women’s representation to 50%, especially since the December revolution is a revolution that would not have been achieved without the prominent contribution of women to its success.
Youth, Intellectuals, Creative Artists, and Students
The vision of the New Sudan will not become a reality unless it can attract the active participation of youth, intellectuals, creative artists, students and academics and recognize the value of their own activities through their independent platforms.
A National Project and a New Social Contract:
The December Revolution laid a solid foundation for a democratic national project and a new social contract, and this issue is of great interest to our Movement.
Position on the Juba Peace Agreement
Our Movement will work to implement, develop, and complete the Juba Peace Agreement under democratic civilian rule. Our Leadership Council will issue a detailed assessment in this regard.
Attitude to Dismantling of the Old Regime
The previous experience of the dismantling process showed that some mistakes were made and these should not be overlooked. But its objectives were correct. We know from accurate records that the dissolved National Congress Party had politically appointed about 135,000 of its members and loyalists in the state apparatus and captured it in order to plunder its resources. We need professional, non-politicized state institutions that do not infringe on the rights of others.
A Message to the Resistance Committees
The Resistance Committees are the beating heart of the Revolution and have shouldered many of its sacrifices. The victory of the Revolution depends on the Resistance Committees working jointly with other political forces and civil society groups. The counter-revolutionary forces, that are working against building the critical political mass needed for victory, are trying to sabotage the relationship between the Resistance Committees, civil society, and political forces. It is true that there are differences amongst these forces but these can only be resolved through an honest and in-depth dialogue that avoids slander, fault-finding and bullying.
A Message to the Sudanese Diaspora
You played, and are playing, an important role in the victory of the December Revolution and our people need your support now more than ever before.
A Message to the Forces of the Armed Struggle
You made great sacrifices to achieve the victory of the Revolution but the position that many of you have adopted after the 25 October coup does not comport with the aspirations of the people in the peripheries who took part, and are still taking part, in this Revolution. It is time to take a clear stand against the failed coup. There will be no peace under a totalitarian regime. There will be no peace except under civilian rule and a new social contract. We must break away from the confines of eternal protestations and the call of ethnic and geographical allegiances and widen our horizons by engaging in building a new national project.
A Message to Comrade Malik Agar and his Colleagues
The way in which the dispute between us has been managed is a positive addition to Sudanese national political culture and respect for our common history. It lays the foundations for developing our relationship in the future on all issues where there is agreement and common interest.
A Message to Comrade Abdul Aziz Al-Hulu and his Colleagues
We have taken different paths but what really unites us is the struggle against totalitarianism and for the establishment of a state based on non-discriminatory citizenship and a just peace. What is nobler than these goals!
A Message to the Sudanese Islamic Movement
Do not waste your energies on trying to recover a past that has gone and will not return. Look to the future if God is to grant you a virtuous one. Oppression, plundering of resources and totalitarianism will not please God, nor his creatures. Justice always was the issue and the crux.
The Salvation regime has gone forever. We welcome the Islamists whose position is for democracy and who are ready to turn the page on totalitarianism.
A Message to the People of South Sudan
We respect your decision to choose independence. But we seek to establish “a Sudanese Union” between our two sovereign countries, and, in the quest for this Sudanese Union, the historic march of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement represents moral capital and a source of strength for the future.
Our Movement calls for the unity of Africa, strategic Arab-African relations and South-South cooperation.
A Message to the Regional and International Community
We stand for our people’s right to democracy and peace and for regional and international stability.
We will conduct consultations to complete the structure of the Leadership Council, taking into account the 40% representation of women.
At its first meeting, the Leadership Council will decide on the nominations submitted for the selection of the Vice-President and the Secretary-General, one of whom shall be a woman, taking account of Sudanese diversity, geography, and competence in all organs of the Movement. The Leadership Council will also ratify the Manifesto and the Constitution.
In the event of a leadership vacuum for any reason at the present time in the position of Chairperson, Comrade Buthaina Ibrahim Dinar will act temporarily as the Chairperson, by virtue of her seniority in the previous Leadership Council until the new Leadership Council convenes.
Chairperson of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-Revolutionary Democratic Current (RDC)
22 August 2022