The failed coup in Sudan has revealed the conflict between the pillars of the military and civil authority, as Abdel-Fattah Al-Burhan, the Chairman of the Transitional Sovereignty Council, criticized the government and political parties. He accused them of opening the door to the coup attempt, as well as of being indulged in internal conflicts.
“The slogans of the revolution were lost along the way, while struggling for positions, and there is no elected government, we are the preservers of the country’s security, we are the preservers, despite everyone, for the unity and security of Sudan,” Al-Burhan says.
“The armed forces left the executive work to the politicians. However, the topic has deviated from its rightful track, which means that the differences that have been cemented in the government and its political backer-represented by the Forces for Freedom and Change are the main cause of the crises,” he adds.
Last Tuesday, Sudan announced that it had thwarted a coup attempt of an army group belonging to corps in Al-Shajara area, south of Khartoum, affiliated with the former regime. On the other hand, politicians say that the official version is vague and does not provide sufficient answers to the Sudanese people, as the authorities are reticent about information related to details of the failed attempt.
Casting Doubt on the Official Story..
Meanwhile, Sudanese political forces have rejected Al-Burhan’s statements, as the Umma Party considered them “dangerous statements and contacts had been initiated to sit down with the military component to discuss the crisis.” The Sudanese Congress party has also expressed its rejection of the accusations of the Chairman of the Sovereignty Council of political forces. Congress party has stressed that there is no specific party that is considered a guardian of Sudan, and only the people have the right to decide.
“Al-Burhan’s statements are misfired at this time and do not serve the spirit of partnership with the government because the discrepancy is discussed in closed meetings and rooms, rather than out-of-door,” Noureddine Salah El-Din, a leader in the Forces of Freedom and Change, points out.
“The constitutional document has commitments stipulated in it, and any party’s violation of it would be a disaster for everyone and for the future of Sudan which needs everyone to align themselves with what they agreed upon by bringing the curtain down on the stage of totalitarianism, and moving towards building a democratic state in which state institutions are committed to their constitutional duty,” Salah El-Din notes.
In turn, Taha Othman Ishaq, a leader of the Forces of Freedom and Change, has confirmed via Facebook that the speech of the head of the Sovereign Council and Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, his deputy, is more dangerous than the coup itself. Ishaq explains that the speech is trying to hold civilians responsible for what happened, and civilians do not have any bad intention or attitude towards the military or the military establishment.
Lieutenant-General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo or “Hemedti”, the First Vice-President of the Sudanese Sovereignty Council, has blamed the politicians for the repeated attempts of coups in the country. Hemedti draws attention that the politicians have always neglected the citizen, his pension and his basic services, and were busy struggling over chairs and positions, which has created a state of dissatisfaction among the people.
In addition, Abdel Wahab Saad, the Secretary-General of the Popular Congress Party, has questioned the official version of the coup. “Coups always begin with controlling over military units, detaining senior politicians or even controlling radio and television, which we did not witness during the last alleged coup,” Abdel Wahab tells.
“The Popular Congress Party in general is against any military coups that come to take power, or even stay for a long time in the transitional period,” the Sudanese politician states. “Those who spoke of an existing coup are the highest political and military authority in the country, as they talked about an attempted coup that we did not see it having any effect; it may not have gone beyond the form of protests or rebellion,” he clarifies.
Coup or Political Game?
The coup attempt ignited social media in Sudan as the country‘s opinions had a great split via social media over the goals of the “coup” and those responsible for it.
Activists have launched several campaigns, most notably of which are “Sudan coup attempt, not military coup,” “a military coup to discuss and analyze what happened. They point out that the coup attempt is not surprising news for those who know the history of Sudan since its independence and the failure in Sudan aims to thwart the revolution in Sudan for which the youth of the revolution had died.
Activists have also questioned what the Sudanese army announced about thwarting a coup attempt. They consider it just a play in order to feel Sudanese street’s pulse and keep imposing military rule. This coup attempt has proved beyond any doubt that the political incubator completely lost the street and became stripped down from any public cover.
Observers believe that there is a great tension that seems to have begun emerging into the open and might explode. This suggests that both components had enough, and unless an agreement is quickly reached and a return to the constitutional document is achieved, it will not be possible for the transitional authority to keep going amid the mines that each party lays for the other. The observers opine that each side has the tools of power that enable it to harass the other and therefore the game of biting the fingers that is now being played affects, with its results, Sudan only. Feeling the pulse has limits, and what happened now has seriously escalated the situation, which indicates that a clash is about to happen.
Jockeying for Position
The warnings of the Military Council have not been the first, as Lieutenant-General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, the First Vice-President of the Sudanese Sovereignty Council, had warned earlier of the fragility of the security situation in Sudan. He was clear stating that the political scene in the country suffers from divisions.
Al-Reshid Ibrahim, a Sudanese political researcher, believes that questioning the narrative of the coup attempt has its justifications, especially when taking into account the conflicting official statements between the military and civil authorities. The first has spoken about thwarting a coup while the second has emphasized that the coup was carried out by the remnants of the former regime. “During the past two years, it has been announced more than once that coup attempts had been thwarted, but without providing details,” Ibrahim stresses.
“The government usually links any failure to the remnants of the previous regime, but the discrepancy in statements weakens the government’s position as it seeks only to win projects to seize power, and its relationship with the Military Council is competitive, not integrative,” Al-Reshid Ibrahim sees. “Each party is using the coup attempt for its own interest and its own agenda, and for this we find an antagonistic relationship between civilians and the military,” he adds.
Ibrahim believes that the transitional period being too long is absolutely unhealthy, especially as things are heading for the worse. Additionally, the exclusion that has been imposed on many sects in the country has inflamed feelings of injustice, which may mean going from peaceful protests to armed movements.
The Transitional Military Council that took power after Al-Bashir had been overthrown in the year 2019 signed with the leaders of the civilian protest movement, in August of the same year, a power-sharing agreement that stipulated a transitional period of three years, which was later extended until the end of 2023.