Sudan’s ex-president Omar al-Bashir was charged with corruption-related offences yesterday, as he appeared in public for the first time since he was overthrown and detained in April. Looking much the same as prior to his removal by the military, he was driven to the prosecutor’s office in Khartoum.
He was charged with illicit possession of foreign currency and accepting gifts in an unofficial manner, prosecutor Alaa al-Din Abdallah told media, adding that Bashir would be given the chance to respond to the accusations.
His trial will be a test of how serious the country’s transitional military council is about trying to erase the legacy of his autocratic 30-year rule, marked by widespread violence, economic collapse and the secession of South Sudan.
Bashir was charged last month with incitement and involvement in the killing of protesters, and prosecutors also want him questioned over suspected money laundering and terrorism financing.
Sudan’s chief prosecutor said on Saturday that 41 former officials from Bashir’s administration were being investigated for suspected graft.
Meanwhile, a top Sudanese general vowed yesterday to send to the “gallows” those who carried out a deadly crackdown on protesters earlier this month that killed dozens and left hundreds wounded. “We are working hard to take those who did this to the gallows,” Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, deputy chief of the ruling military council said in a speech broadcast live on state television. “Whoever committed any fault” will be held accountable, Dagalo added.