Sudan's second cabinet since the ouster of president Omar al-Bashir was sworn in on Wednesday as the country transitioned back to civilian rule.
The country was being led by a transitional council since 2019 following nationwide protests that overthrew the long-term ruler Omar al-Bashir.
The new 25-member Cabinet, led by Prime Minister Abdulla Hamdok, includes three women. The ministers took their oaths at the presidential palace in the capital Khartoum.
The head of the Transitional Sovereign Council, Lieutenant General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, said that “the train of the Sudanese revolution continues and will not stop, and the change is guarded by the will of the Sudanese people,” adding that the Council was formed through the people and not through an election or coup.
In his speech, he urged the government ministers to work as a team with all state institutions, including the reorganised Legislative Council, to see the country’s smooth transition to democracy.
Al-Burhan said the new team should listen to citizens, and seek to address public problems so they do not risk disapproval from the masses.
Sudan’s Minister for Cabinet, Khalid Omer Yousif, said the new government will continue the economic reform that has been pursued over the last year and a half.
“During the past year and a half, the transitional government began some steps in the direction of dealing with the structural crises of the Sudanese economy,” he said.
“It has not born fruit yet, but we came to complete this vision and to place the economic issue and living hardship at the top of [our] priorities.”
The new team includes former armed rebels who have been incorporated into the government following last year’s peace deal between the Transitional Government and the rebels across the country, part of the country’s long-term programme to end years of conflict.
Five ministers retained their positions, including Defence Minister Lt-Gen Yassin Ibrahim Yassin, Nasreddin Abdel Bari (Justice), Nasreddin Mufreh (Religious Affairs), Yassir Abbas (Irrigation and Water Resources) and Intisar Segairon (Higher Education).
Hamdok did not name the Minister for Basic Education, saying this will be done at a later date after further consultation.
Since coming to power in August 2019, Hamdok has tried to rebuild the country’s image by reaching out to various allies abroad, as well as various rebel groups.
In December 2020, the US lifted crippling sanctions imposed on Sudan after it was listed as a state sponsor of terrorism during al-Bashir’s years.
It is expected that this will reopen the country to international investors, allow the country to purchase much-needed spare parts for its factories as well as be eligible to borrow from international lenders initially barred by sanctions from dealing with Khartoum.