Home | News    Friday 30 April 2010

Hundreds of defrauded investors clash with police in Darfur

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April 29, 2010 (KHARTOUM) — Hundreds of defrauded investors in the war ravaged region of Darfur staged protests after losing large sums of money in what appeared to be a Ponzi scheme ran by a few people.

Local media said that the police used tear gas to break up the demonstrations which took place in North Darfur capital city of El-Fasher in front of the prosecutor’s office revealing that the true number of people who fell victim to this fraud could reach 20,000.

The demonstrators were angry that the governor of North Darfur Osman Kibir backtracked on a promise to compensate them for the money they lost but his office later issued a statement saying that this is "interest money" which is forbidden under Islamic Sharia’a law.

Furthermore, it was reported that aggregate losses could be anywhere from 240-350 million Sudanese pounds($120-$175 million) which included money belonging to investors in other parts of country and abroad.

"It was a Ponzi scheme," said a U.N. official in Darfur to Reuters, referring to a pyramid model where money is illegally paid from one investor to the other and presented as profit.

"This has been going on for months. It came to a head," added the official, speaking on condition of anonymity. "It went beyond El Fasher. It went to the Diaspora. People have been venting their frustration, gathering in places."

North Darfur’s regional government said a number of men had been arrested after investors complained about losing big sums. A delegation from the justice ministry has been dispatched to the region.

"Everything is under control of the legal authorities. ... All the people who are dealing with this, they are arrested," the secretary general of North Darfur’s government, Ali Mohammed Ibrahim, told Reuters.

He said investors had been asked to register losses with authorities who would try to track down the missing assets.

Ibrahim declined to go into the details of the financial operation under investigation. Descriptions from El Fasher residents were consistent with a Ponzi scheme.

Ponzi schemes, named after the Italian fraudster Charles Ponzi, pay early investors money received from later investors, and they regularly collapse.

Abdul-Jabbar Abdullah Fadul, a professor at El Fasher University, said he had been warning people for months not to touch the scheme.

"But people want to get money very easily. There was no investment. They were taking things ... taking people’s money and paying them back with other people’s money."

Khalid, a teacher in El Fasher, said he had lost 12,000 Sudanese pounds ($5,400) to two businessmen who started taking investments around 10 months ago.

"They said if you have $10, they will give you some shares or papers. And then after 30 days they will give you $15."

At first the men did pay up, said Khalid, who only wanted to be identified by his first name. Then the business closed down just before Sudan’s national election earlier this month and did not open up afterwards, he added.

"They said they were taking the money, going to Khartoum and other places outside Sudan to buy goods to sell in the markets. That is how they said they made their money.

"The whole thing failed. We went to the bank and their account had been closed ... Now all the people are worried. There is no money and all the people are sad. There is unemployment and many things. It is very bad."

(ST)

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  • 30 April 2010 07:35, by Gatwech

    May God bless Darfur,

    Peace will only come to Darfur after they demand and achieve their self-determination like South Sudan.

    They should wake up and forget about this so-called New Sudan Vision on unity of the country. It is not ’new’ but a vision based on recycled shared principles even before Sudan became independent.

    Dear readers,

    I would like to debate with any ’New Sudan Vision’ gambler on the uniqueness of this so-called ’new’ thing. We are going for referendum and need to brainstorm.

    What is really ‘new’ about the so-called ‘New Sudan Vision’ which people have been making unnecessary noises about as the people of South Sudan are concerned? To me, New Sudan’s "uniqueness" is only about maintaining ‘unity’ of Sudan.

    Look, both separatists and unionists alike since 1955 and 1983, respectively, have been dreaming about peaceful, democratic, and prosperous nation, with justice and equality, in its diverse cultures, ethnicity or races, etc. Federalism was even demanded since 1947.

    The difference in the South was that unionists of the ’New Sudan’ vision wanted such a dream realized within a united Sudan while separatists wanted such a dream realized within an independent South Sudan. That is all!

    So the principles were the same but whether to implement them under a united Sudan or under two separate Sudans was the main difference between these two camps which became very visible since 1983.

    Self-determination then became the best intervening vision which seeks the political opinion of the masses whether they want such dreams pursued under a united Sudan or under an independent South Sudan.

    So there was nothing ’new’ at all to qualify the word "New Sudan" as long as its ideology was concerned in respect to the position of separatists. Its first ideology of socialism in 1983 was the only difference which separatists did not want but after 1991 in Chukudum Convention in 1994 the ideology became one. The difference among South Sudanese politicians was on either about forced unity by unionists or forced separation by separatists.

    Thanks to self-determination for intervening in 1991 in order for the people of South Sudan to give the politicians a break and decide by themselves whether they want an independent nation where peace, democracy and prosperity prevail with justice and equality, or they want to continue pursuing the same dream in a united Sudan.

    So, the principles were the same but the ’uniqueness’ of the so-called New Sudan was only about pursuing such principles within a united Sudan unlike the separatists who were convinced of the failure of unity and wanted such principles (vision) pursued under an independent South.

    As a staunch defender of ’New Sudan Vision’ responded on southsudannation.com earlier by saying that the Vision of New Sudan "...means Sudan with PEACE, EQUALITY and UNITY."

    Well, there is nothing ’new’ about the New Sudan vision on PEACE and EQUALITY because the same are also called for by separatists. Separatists since 1955 want ’peace’ within independent South Sudan and also want ’equality’ within its diverse groups in an independent South Sudan.

    Yes, I would only agree that UNITY of Sudan is the only thing that makes the vision of the so-called New Sudan "unique" in the South. Otherwise, separatists could achieve peace, democracy, prosperity with justice and equality, etc in an independent South Sudan.

    It is like the story of the two hunters who couldn’t agree on what to do with the meat when the Nuer said “ba bul” while the Dinka argued “ba nyop” and later on found out that they were saying the same thing; and that is to “roast the meat.”

    So gamblers of the so-called ‘new whatever’, please spare us from unnecessary noises about new, new, new and whatever unless you just like the word that begins with any thing ‘new.’ There is nothing new there which was not known or demanded before. Okay? Sorry, if I have offended you, but that is the reality of the matter.

    repondre message

    • 30 April 2010 08:26, by kuminyandi

      Gatwech(aka Oshay)

      Please take the time and study this Video clip without bias. You will the glimpse of new Sudan vision presented to you by its founder Dr. John Garang de mabior. Simply access or type this links and you will be there hhp://vimeo.com/6501892 Let me know about your findings. Thanks

      Kumi,

      repondre message

      • 30 April 2010 08:45, by kuminyandi

        Gatwech(aka Oshay)

        Correction on Html link, try this one http://vimeo.com/6501892
        Thanks. let me know about your findings.

        Kumi,

        repondre message

        • 30 April 2010 21:00, by Gatwech

          Ahahahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaa...............

          See, what a confused gambler.

          It doesn’t make sense at all!

          You will die while remaining a confused man, Kuminyandi (aka Dinka Boy).

          Garang would never waste his time on this meaningless so-called new sudan if he resurrects like Jesus.

          He would tell you poor and primitive submissive followers that he was lying like what Dr. Turabi told to his Mujehadeens that he was indeed lying about seven virgins in heaven waiting for them.

          Ahaahahahahahaaaa............

          repondre message

          • 1 May 2010 04:38, by kuminyandi

            Gatwech(aka Oshay),

            Nothing comes out of you due to your ignorant beliefs. You did not even study the video. So there’s no way you can answer my questions I was about to ask you. And you intentionally avoided that. What a shame!!!!

            Kumi,

            repondre message

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