Name: Sudanese Communist Party (SCP) or Communist Party of Sudan (CPS)
Headquarters: Khartoum, Sudan
Ideology: Communism, Marxism-Leninism
Aligned Newspapers: Al-Midan
Leaders: Abdel-Khalek Mahjoub, -1971; Mohamed Ibrahim Nugud, 1971-2012.
1946 - Sudanese Communist Party (SCP) is founded.
1971 - SCP leader Abdel-Khalek Mahjoub executed by ex-president Ga’afar Nimeiri in the aftermath of the brief SCP-backed coup in 1971 along with a large number of the party’s leadership. Succeeded by Mohamed Ibrahim Nugud who goes into hiding. Analysts say that the party was never able to regain its prominence as the strongest communist party in the region after losing its top leadership in 1971.
1985 - Uprising against Nimeiri leads Nugud to reemerges to the political scene after 14 years in hiding
1989 - Military coup led by Brigadier Omer Hassan al-Bashir brings the Islamist National Islamic Front to power. All political parties are banned and Nugud goes back into hiding.
1991 - The collapse of the Soviet Union. The SCP struggles to retain its popularity after this watershed and the diminishing popularity of communist ideology around the world.
2005 - Nugud’s hiding place is uncovered by the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) but the Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the SPLM and NIF/NCP sees Sudan moved into a a system of government that was more tolerant of opposition.
2009 - SCP holds its first general convention in decades. Nugud is reelected to the party’s top post but his views appear more moderate with some in the party privately attributing it to old age and deteriorating health. At one point there were discussions within the SCP on whether its name should be changed to reflect the new realities.
2010 April - Nugud only receives 26,442 votes (0.26%) in his bid to become president at elections in April. The SCP chief iss no longer the charismatic eloquent figure he used to be.
2012 March - Nugud dies in London aged 82 from brain cancer.
People flock to Mohamed Ibrahim Nugud’s funeral
This background on the Communist Party of Sudan is taken from The Sudanese press after separation – Contested identities of journalism. MICT 2012, Page 41.
The Communist Party of Sudan (CPS)s one of the nation’s oldest parties. By the 1920s, Marxist teachings already had found their way into Sudan through the Egyptian Communist Party. The CPS was formally founded as the SMNL (see AIF) in 1946, ten years before Sudan’s independence, and was soon considered to be one of the most influential communist parties in both the Middle East and Africa, reaching out to Southern Sudanese as well. Its Marxist vision of shifting the center of the country’s economic gravity to the peripheries had a wide influence on Sudanese political life. In the first general elections of 1953, a CPS member won a seat under the banner of the AIF. Under Abdel Khaliq Mahjoub’s leadership, the CPS played an instrumental role in the toppling of General Ibrahim Abboud’s military regime (1958- 1964). Hence, the transitional government’s first cabinet included a number of CPS members. After the 1965 elections, the party was declared illegal again, mainly because of pressure from the Islamist ICF (see Popular Congress) but continued opposition activities from its strongholds in the universities and labor unions. In 1969, the CPS supported the May Revolution of the leftist “Free Officers” led by Colonel Numeiri. The party remained officially dissolved, but some CPS politicians entered into the government. However, in 1971, Numeiri accused the CPS of complicity in an abortive coup d’e?tat led by CPS member Hashim El Atta. Mahjoub, Atta and many other CPS leaders were executed, and the party was once again forced to continue its activities underground. Following Numeiri’s overthrow thanks to a popular uprising in 1985, the CPS voiced strong opposition to the draconian September Laws, which Numeiri had introduced in 1983 under the label of Sharia, and advocated for a secular constitution. The party won three seats in the 1986 parliamentary elections. With other parties it entered into a dialogue with the mainly Southern rebels of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A) in order to find a solution for the civil war in the South that had broken out again in 1983. After the 1989 military takeover, the CPS played a prominent role in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), an umbrella of parties and forces opposed to the “National Salvation Revolution” rule of General Al Bashir. Simultaneously, it continued its acti- vities from inside the country. CPS secretary general Mohamed Ibrahim Nugud, who had held the office since 1972 and stayed in hiding inside Sudan from 1994 until 2006, promoted “socialism in a multi-party system”. He passed away in March 2012.
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