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The 21 October March: Who is the Enemy?

By Yasir Arman

- One of the main features of the December revolution is its vitality and the broad participation of women and youth, resistance committees, martyrs’ families, forces from the margins and all the states of Sudan. This is the source of its continued strength.

- Its main weaknesses are the absence of a unified leadership with a vision and program, divisions among civil society, political organisations leaders, the weakness of the national fabric and ethnic tensions.

- The youth leading the revolution are looking for a program that is different from that offered by the current political organisations. They are looking for a program that celebrates diversity, equal citizenship, freedom, peace and justice. They want a New Sudan. No single political force or trend will be able to accommodate the aspirations of these young people. They will find their own way to organize themselves. Despite frustration at the performance of the transitional institutions, it is evident that they are still a force to be reckoned with.

- The institutions of the transitional period are not doing so well. However, the solution is not to remove them but rather to develop and improve them. Calling for their overthrow will only serve the remnants of the former regime.

- Resolving the economic crisis and improving living conditions and basic services are the very meaning and essence of change. A revolution that cannot feed its own people will not achieve any of its objectives.

- The former regime was, and remains, the enemy of the mass movement. When it was overthrown, the absence of leadership and a national program led to divisions among the ranks of the forces of revolution and change. We need to redefine our enemy and our adversary so that the forces of the revolution do not turn against each other. Instead of working to dismantle the old regime, they are destroying themselves.

- I prefer to use the word "adversary” rather than "enemy" and the real adversary now are the institutions and forces inherited from the old regime”. We must work on building independent professional institutions and a Sudan that includes everyone.

- The forces of the former regime are working to sow discord and light fires among the ranks of the forces of revolution and change until the slogans of eliminating the empowerment of the former regime disappear from the slogans of the mass movement and are replaced by slogans that split the forces of revolution and change.

- The 21 October March should reinforce the unity of the forces of revolution and change, deal a blow to the former regime and raise slogans calling for freedom, peace, and justice, completion of the tasks of the revolution, the elimination of empowerment, and putting on trial without delay anyone who has committed crimes or indulged in corruption undermining the rights of the people.

- Knowing one’s adversary, uniting the forces of revolution and change, taking steps to build the new system and making the transitional period success are what the mass movement should aim to achieve and work for with all its energies.

- The fragility of the current political situation, unlike that in October 1964 and April 1985, is linked to the fragility of state institutions. The forces of the former regime are the only ones benefiting from fragmenting the forces of revolution and change and from blurring slogans that do not serve the unity of the forces of revolution and change and do not call for completing what has been achieved but rather for overthrowing it completely. The slogan of overthrowing the government only serves the interests of the old regime of General Bashir and not those of anyone else.

Yes to the 21 October.

Yes to the unity of the Forces of Revolution and Change and glory to the Sudanese people.

The author is the Vice-Chairman of the SPLM-N. SRF Secretary for External Relations, and head of the SRF advance delegation in Khartoum.