Next Steps for Sudan’s Democratic and Economic Transformation

10.10.2019, 10:00AM to 11:30AM

Amidst austerity and a struggling economy, in December 2018 Sudanese began protesting against economic hardships. These protests led to the deposing of President al-Bashir. But the protests and demands of civilian rule continued until an agreement was reached with military leaders for a transitional power-sharing arrangement until elections in 2022. The protests were about economic mismanagement, pervasive corruption, and lack of democratic representation and accountability. As Sudan’s Sovereignty Council leads the country through this transitional phase, many questions remain. How can civilians assert control and influence within the Sovereignty Council? What obstacles must Sudan overcome to start down a path of economic recovery and growth? How can democratic institutions and anti-corruption initiatives be strengthened within Sudan? On October 10 CIPE will hold a panel discussion on root causes of these protests, the intersection of political and economic grievances, and next steps towards a democratic and economically prosperous Sudan.

To watch the full event video, please visit CIPE’s Facebook page


  • Khalid Omar Yousif, Secretary General of the Sudanese Congress Party (SCP)
  • Azaz Elshami, human rights activist
  • Magdi M. Amin, Investment Partner with Omidyar Network
  • Shaza Bala Elmahdi (moderator), Co-Founder of Sudan Human Rights and Accountability Project


  • Khalid Omer Yousif is the Secretary-General of the Sudanese Congress Party (SCP), one of the founding members of the Forces for Freedom and Change. Mr. Yousif, a civil engineer by profession, was one of President al-Bashir’s most vocal critics and was imprisoned dozens of times by the regime’s notorious National Intelligence and Security Service. He began his political career at the University of Khartoum where he was elected to serve as the finance secretary for the Student Union, and most recently was the Vice President of the SCP. During the uprising, he was a member of the Forces for Freedom and Change’s coordinating body, the leading executive body of the alliance which oversaw the political acts and the mobilization works since the formation of the alliance till now.
  • Azaz Elshami is a Sudanese-American human rights advocate and independent consultant with more than 10 years of experience in public diplomacy, policy research, and capacity building with U.S. government-supported entities and with international organizations. Her experience includes human rights, gender equality, peacebuilding, journalism, and conflict resolution. She advocated for Internet access rights and worked as an analyst to produce the Sudan Section for the 2015 and 2016 “Freedom on the Net” reports for Freedom House. She has engaged in policy advocacy addressing the European Union, the British Parliament, and the Arab League.
  • Magdi M. Amin is an Investment Partner with Omidyar Network (ON), where he focuses on global strategy, early-stage investment in beneficial technology, and leads ON’s digital identity program in Africa. ON’s vision is for a world in which everyone has access to beneficial technology that empowers people and protects their privacy and security. Magdi is on external service from the World Bank Group, where he worked for nearly two decades. Most recently he managed Corporate Strategy at the International Finance Corporation and IFC’s Economic Advisory Board. Earlier, he led World Bank and IFC private sector reform programs in Southeast Asia, Africa, and MENA, with a strong emphasis on institutional reform and anticorruption. He led the World Bank’s Private Sector Development programs in Sudan and Ethiopia from 2005-2008, after the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. Prior to the World Bank Group, Magdi worked in corporate turnaround management consulting and commercial banking. Magdi received an A.B. from Princeton University and an M.A. from Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). You can follow Magdi on Twitter @Magdi_Amin.
  • Shaza Elmahdi is a Sudanese American human rights activist, Co-Founder of Sudan Human Rights and Accountability Project (Munassra), with more than 10 years of experiences in human rights research, reports, and advocacy. She earned her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Khartoum, and her graduate degree from George Washington University. She has been involved in many human rights initiatives, including an initiative to document and report on violations against medical staff with Physicians For Human Rights Organization, and worked on local and international advocacy with many organizations in Sudan and Washington DC. She is a writer, blogger, and contributor in a number of newspapers in English and Arabic.



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