The Sudanese Professionals Association reported strong support for the general strike on the first of two days of action. The SPA, along with all but one of the signatories to the opposition Declaration of Freedom and Change, launched the strike call in response to delays by the ruling military council in handing over power to civilians.
Public sector employees walked out across the country, defying threats by General Hemeti, the deputy head of the transitional military council, and commander of the notorious Rapid Support Forces, a brutal militia formed out of the Janjaweed forces which terrorised Darfur a few years ago. On Tuesday 23 May, Hemeti said he would sack government workers for taking part in the strike.
The strike was also strong in Sudan’s small industrial sector, with major flour mills shut, cigarette and edible oils manufacturers on strike, and cement workers joining the action. Workers in the military production sector were reported to have walked out, according to independent news station, Radio Dabanga.
Workers in the financial sector joined the strike in droves: the SPA listed 27 separate banks and financial services companies on its Facebook page which took action on 28 May.
Pharmacies were shut across the country, alongside hospitals and clinics. Healthworkers have played a crucial role in the revolutionary movement, with doctors’ organisations providing much of the organisational backbone for the first phase of the uprising. Teachers joined the strike and organised street protests.
Crucial transport hubs were paralysed by workers’ action, including the main ports. Pictures on the SPA’s Facebook page showed the docks empty of workers and signs proclaiming 100 percent support for the strike. Airport workers and civil aviation engineers also joined the strike, with large protests taking place at Khartoum airport.
What you can do:
- Show your solidarity with the general strike online use the #SudanStrikeSolidarity hashtag
- Follow the example of members of the UCU union in the UK and pass a resolution in support of the Sudanese revolution. Read more here.
- Download a copy of our briefing on the armed men who threaten Sudan’s peaceful revolution Sudan_military_militias_2019_briefing