Sudan: Call to postpone general strike as flood disaster spreads

Floods in Wadi Halfa, 23 August. Picture: TAM via Facebook

Some leading Sudanese Resistance Committees have called for the postponement of the general strike planned for 24 August in order to give more time for unions to build support for revolutionary action in the workplaces and to allow activists to work on relief efforts for those displaced and made homeless by major floods which have swept through several states across the country in recent days. 

A statement signed by the Committees of Bahri Neighborhoods, the Coordination of East Nile South, the Gathering of Committees of Hajj Youssef Neighborhoods, the Coordination of Khartoum City Resistance Committees and the Coordination of Greater Omdurman Resistance Committees said: 

“The unions under which the employees are the rights holders and the real stakeholders, need more organization, alignment and coordination to carry out civil disobedience, which will be a fatal blow in the face of a coup”

Activists should help mobilise relief for flood victims on 24 August as the military regime had failed to provide help needed by those in danger, the statement added. 

“We are following with concern what happened in the Nile River, Kordofan, Al-Jazeera in general, and the locality of Al-Manaqil in particular, and the subsequent invasion of  floods and damage to agricultural land which did not receive any attention from officials as expected in the state of non-state that we are witnessing, because we are under the rule of warlords who do not understand anything about governance and do not pay any attention to the citizen rather, they focus on how to suppress peaceful processions and kill innocent unarmed youth … the 24th of August will be allocated to support those affected by floods and provide aid and assistance to them from all segments of the Sudanese society, interconnected employees, workers and traders.” 

Revolutionary mobilisations are still continuing, with some Resistance Committees outside Khartoum such as the committees in Wad Madani, capital of Al Jazira state, calling for demonstrations on 25 August

There have also been many local strikes over pay and conditions recently, particularly in the health sector. Health workers in Kassala and North Darfur and casualised oil workers in West Kordofan were among those walking out in recent days. The cost of living crisis is driving many of these strikes as workers demand the implementation of nationally agreed pay rises. 

Cost of living rises have also sparked widespread strikes in Britain and trade unionists there have received strong messages of support from TAM (the Alliance of Demand-based Bodies, a coalition of environmental justice, worker and refugee rights’ campaigns) and the Sudanese Teachers’ Committee. In response to an appeal for solidarity with the planned general strike, British trade unionists have contacted MENA Solidarity with messages of support for their Sudanese counterparts. Ian Hodson, General Secretary of the Bakers Union, Mary Callaghan and Julia Mwaluke from Unite’s national executive, Steven Shaw from the RMT rail workers’ union national executive along with other leading trade unionists from Unison and PCS in Wigan said in a statement: 

“We have been inspired by the courage, determination and organisation of the Resistance Committees and Trade union activists. We are aware of a recent national strike by teachers and efforts to build independent trade unions 

We welcome the call to trade unions by the Resistance Committees to strike on the 24th August and we send a message of solidarity to our brothers and sisters in the unions who will be striking. As trade unionists in Britain we hope to build an international movement across the world’s  borders. We share the same interests in common in our fight for equality, democracy, freedom and social justice. Victory to the Sudanese workers! Victory to the Sudanese Revolution!”

A full list of solidarity messages will be published by MENA Solidarity shortly. 

One thought on “Sudan: Call to postpone general strike as flood disaster spreads

  1. Pingback: Sudan strike solidarity – resources and messages page launched | MENA Solidarity Network

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