Former Rebel Chiefs Named in Sudan’s New Cabinet

Sudan’s Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok announced Monday a new cabinet bringing in seven ex-rebel chiefs as ministers, following a peace deal in October aimed to end decades of war, AfricaNews reported.

Veteran rebel leader and economist Gibril Ibrahim, of the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) – which played a major role in the Darfur conflict – was appointed as Sudan’s new finance minister.

“We have reached consensus on over 25 ministries,” Hamdok said, during a press conference in Khartoum.

“This lineup aims to preserve this country from collapse… we know there will be challenges but we are certain that we will move forward.”

Hamdok dissolved the previous cabinet on Sunday to make way for a more inclusive lineup in government.

Two ministers were selected from the military, with the remaining coming from the Forces for Freedom and Change group, which plays a key role in Sudanese politics.

The group was the driving force behind the anti-government protests that led to the April 2019 ouster of strongman Omar al-Bashir.

Hamdok named as foreign minister Mariam al-Sadiq al-Mahdi, daughter of Sudan’s last democratically elected prime minister, Sadiq al-Mahdi, who died aged 84 in November from a coronavirus infection.

He was toppled by Bashir in a 1989 Islamist-backed military coup.