Ex-Rebel Leader’s New Fight Is to Revive Sudan’s Broken Economy

Gibreel Ibrahim once led a rebel group that fought to overthrow the Sudanese dictator Omar al-Bashir. As the nation’s chief financial officer, he is struggling to revive the battered economy and attract important foreign investment.

Ibrahim is a fulcrum of the transitional government, uniting civilians, the military and insurgent groups after Bashir’s overthrow in a 2019 riot. Under the leadership of Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, it is in the process of paying off the majority of the country’s US $ 60 billion foreign debt and the International Monetary Fund’s arrears.

Other challenges remain, including holding elections, loosening the military’s stranglehold on key industries, opening new lines of credit, and unlocking more revenue from Sudanese gold. Hamdok’s government must also disarm the ex-rebels and integrate them into the army, a process that requires money that it doesn’t have.

“The real challenge is to convince those who ruled the country for decades to accept the change and accept that they will receive a lesser portion of the resources,” Ibrahim said in an interview at his home in the eastern suburbs Capital Khartoum. “The military themselves are not happy when others come in.”

Comments are closed.