Sudan: Farewell Uncle Al Tijani — a remarkable revolutionary (+ Tijani's 1982 address to the court in defence of the SCP)

By Abohoraira Ali

November 29, 2011 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal/Green Left Weekly -- On November 23, Sudan lost an invaluable activist, writer and leader.

Al Tijani Al Tayeb was one of the founders of the Sudanese Communist Party and the editor of the SCP's newspaper Al Midan. He dedicated his entire life to the movements against colonialism, dictatorship and capitalism in Sudan and against imperialist exploitation of Africa and the Middle East.

Al Tijani was born in 1926 in a poor village near the town of Shendi in north Sudan. His father was heavily involved in the Sudanese independence movement, fighting against the British occupation. Al Tijani learned much from his father’s ideas.

His family moved to Omdurman in Khartoum when Al Tijani was young. He attended school there and studied at Gordon College, which later became Khartoum University.

Al Tijani then went to Egypt to study, where he became involved with Egyptian communists and other leftists. After one year, he was arrested for helping the Egyptian people fight against the British, capitalism and the caste system.

Al Tijani was deported to Sudan where he continued to fight the British occupiers.

Al Tijani and some fellow activists formed the SCP in 1946. He also helped to establish Al Midan and was the paper’s editor for some 50 years, until his death.

Al Tijani was a leader of the movements against the various post-independence dictatorships. He spent most of his life either in jail, underground or in exile, but all these challenges only strengthened his convictions. His time in prison totalled 12 years. He spent another decade underground, where he relied on the help and bravery of ordinary people to keep him safe while he was constantly on the run.

Al Tijani was known for his activism, but also his honest writing. Even those in other political parties respected him and learned from him.

In 1982, after spending two years in solitary confinement, jailed without charge under the Jaafar Al Nimeiri dictatorship, Al Tijani was brought before Nimeiri’s State Security Court. In his defence statement (see below), he boldly refuted the regime’s allegations against the SCP and eloquently outlined the party’s vision for his country.

In response to the claim the SCP was sabotaging national unity, he pointed out how Nimeiri’s reign was based on repression of the majority in the interests of the minority: “It reaps the toil of the masses and plunders the resources of the country, heeding nothing but their narrow interests and those of their imperialist masters.”

The SCP’s goal of power in the hands of the working class would mean government “not by repression or subjugation, but by the willful consent of the absolute majority of our people … it is only the national unity built around the interests of the workers that can transcend the parochialism, chauvinism, and religious strife that bisect our society.”

Al Tijani told the court: “The experience of our people shows that a serious and deep-rooted opposition will be impossible to eradicate by force. The objective causes of such an opposition are related to the distinctions between the various social forces in the society.”

He explained the contradiction that developed in Sudan after independence from British colonial rule, “between all bourgeois parties and the classes they represent on the one hand, and the masses of workers, peasants and revolutionary intelligentsia on the other”.

“The former tried to perpetuate the colonial political and economic structures, while the latter aspired to translate independence into better living conditions for the masses. The progressive camp wanted to participate in the building of a new Sudan by means of a national democratic revolution that paves the way for socialism.”

Al Tijani outlined a program for “building the Sudan of the future”, including establishing the foundations of a democratic society.

He called for Sudan to “revert to our positive role among the Arab and African progressive movements. We should follow an independent foreign policy built on vehement opposition to neo-colonialism, on the one hand, and cordiality with the socialist and non-aligned countries on the other.”

He also called for the economy to be released “from the fetters of foreign monopolies” and for an urgent development program “that should aspire to uplift the sufferings of the masses”, including a fair wage structure and affordable prices for basic commodities.

“Simultaneously”, Al TIjani argued, “we should embark on a long term development plan whose primary objective is redressing the uneven development between the various regions”.

Sudan would be a very different place today if such a plan had been implemented.

The military court sentenced Al Tijani to 10 years’ jail. However, his term was cut short when the people’s uprising of 1985 overthrew Nimeiri.

Al Tijani was freed from jail by the people protesting in the streets. In a 2004 interview with the Egyptian Al Ahram newspaper (conducted during one of Al Tijani’s long periods in exile), he recalled how the people “literally carried us home on their shoulders! … It was thrilling, quite unlike anything I'd ever experienced in my life.”

Just four years after the successful uprising, Sudan's President Omer Al Bashir seized power in a brutal military coup masterminded by the National Islamic Front, whose attempts to crush the SCP were unmatched by previous rulers.

Al Tijani told Al Ahram: “I personally know of at least 20 Communists who were tortured to death under the NIF."

Fighting this brutal regime is how Al Tijani spent the remainder of his life.

Summing up his relentless dedication to the struggle to liberate his country, Al Tijani explained in the concluding remarks of his 1982 defence speech: “I find no gratification except in welding myself to the whole which is the Sudanese revolutionary forces …

“I realise myself only through identification with the values and aspirations of my people's struggle. I identify myself with the heroic history of our people, and I am a product of that history.”

Al Tijani will be remembered in Sudan and throughout the world for his remarkable contribution to the long struggle for peace, justice and democracy for his people.

Al Tijani Al Tayeb's 1982 address to the court in defence of the Sudanese Communist Party

In 1982, a military court in Khartoum sentenced Al Tijani Al Tayeb to 10 years' imprisonment. He was brought before the court after two years in the custody of state security. Below is an English translation of his lengthy statement to the court published in the July 1983 edition of the Review of African Political Economy.Text from StillSUDAN.

* * *

Mr President, and honourable members of the court! With this trial, once again I join the long queue of patriots who, since colonial times, have been persecuted for their political beliefs in accord with fascist laws. Fundamental human rights, e.g. the right to free expression, are transformed into punishable offences. Yet, no such harassment will deter our people from their struggle against repressive law. In fact, our fight for independence and our struggle against the colonialist's anti-democratic legislation were one and the same coin. The post-independence struggle for socio-economic change has been inseparably wed to the unceasing fight for democracy. Undoubtedly, the modern history of our people's political and social movement is knit together by one long thread of struggle for democratic rights and civil liberties. The most colossal success in this respect was the October uprising [1964] which demonstrated the resolve of our people in pursuit of democracy.

The present regime is intent on obliterating this resolve. They are institutionalising their endeavour through one man rule, the one-party system, the famous State Security Law, the foiled trade union laws, the state controlled media and various other methods of repression. Paramount among the means of oppression are the State Security Law and the notorious State Security Organisation (SSO). These are the regime's vehicles for inflicting unprecedented maltreatment of citizens; they infringe on one's right to personal freedom, confiscate his right to a livelihood, arrest him indefinitely without trial and subject him to physical torture. Peaceful demonstrations are fired upon with live ammunition, with intent to kill. The citizen is denied his basic legal rights. No political detainee can be released on parole and, even before investigation starts with him, he is treated as if he were convicted. Physical and psychological torture are invariably used to squeeze information and confessions out of detainees.

Moreover, as evidenced by my case, the political detainee is often the object of a media campaign full of lies and slander, without giving him a chance to defend himself. Following my arrest, the regime-controlled newspapers published a series of statements by SSO officials accusing me and the Communist Party (CP) of being agents for 'foreign circles'. On the 20th of August (1981) El Sahafa published an interview with the chief of the SSO, quoted from an Egyptian paper, in which he reiterated the regime's allegation that 'the communists have always been receiving their instructions from abroad'. As a patriot who has uncompromisingly dedicated his entire life to his country and people, I find these allegations slanderous, cheap and cowardly. These lies, however, failed to materialise among the accusations with which the prosecution panel have faced me inside this court. Obviously, they have failed to find a single shred of evidence in the hundreds of CP documents presented before the court.

Any judgment of the CP would not fail to perceive its positive role in the history of Sudanese nationalism. The CP is in fact the only party in this country completely innocent of foreign allegiance. Rather than tutelage, it is friendship that binds the CP to the progressive movements the world over. It has global relations built on parity, mutual respect, solidarity and joint struggle for the joint noble goals.

The aforementioned propagandistic paper describes the CP as "the outlawed party". Isn't this tautology clear evidence for the absence of democracy? Parties are banned in favour of the one-party system decreed by the regime's constitution. The state party, the Socialist Union (SU), is claimed to be an alliance of the working people -- a format which unifies the people in place of party rivalries. In reality, these are self-defeating arguments, for the SU is by no means a popular alliance. It is just another class-oriented party, speaking for the interests of the state and commercial bourgeoisie. It is a deformed institution at the beck and call of its boss, the head of state. The recent liquidation of its leading bodies and the appointment of a new central committee by presidential decrees are further evidence of its precarious and rickety nature.

Independent of the SU, the Sudanese people actually proceed to conduct political activities of which the SU is never capable, notwithstanding its facilities. Recent proofs of this are the all-out railway strike, the Darfur uprising and the nationwide uprisings of December 1981-January 1982.

There are, however, some parties which are allowed some degree of open political activity. The repressive laws and machinery of the regime deliberately turn a deaf ear to those activities. These are mainly the Muslim Brotherhood and the Islamic Republicans. The head of the regime has declared in the meeting of the Central Committee of the SU of June 22, 1982 that political parties have also reappeared in the Southern Region. Add to this the fact that the leaders of some other rightist parties actually move about with relative ease thanks to the matrix of economic and social relations that bind them to the state commercial bourgeoisie in power. The regime, to all intents and purposes, is fully aware of the activities of the Muslim Brothers. These parties are being tricked into coming to the surface to be contained, manipulated and eventually crushed.

Obviously, the only object of strict illegality is the CP. No wonder it is singled out in this way, for it is radically different from the other parties. It is the only party that never entertained compromise with the present dictatorship. Experience has shown that the attitude of any regime towards the CP is an indication of its attitude towards democracy. It is axiomatic that the victory achieved in October 1964 by our people was not merely in deposing a military dictatorship but in restoring democratic rights.

Another allegation levelled at the CP and myself is "the attempt to sabotage national unity". The evidence produced by the prosecution is the equation the CP calls for power to be put in the hands of the working class, therefore the CP is instigating class antagonisms!

How simplistic and naive! The prosecution counsel speaks for a regime that identifies itself with the interests of a minority. It has usurped power through the use of force, and it subjugates the absolute majority of our people by means of repression. It reaps the toil of the masses and plunders the resources of the country, heeding nothing but their narrow interests and those of their imperialist masters.

It is in fact true the CP's long term strategy pertains to the slogan of power to the working class. But it is far from true that what would ensue in the circumstance would be class antagonism. If we ever achieve such a success, power will lie with the broadest sector of the masses -- the majority rather than the minority. Government would be not by repression or subjugation, but by the willful consent of the absolute majority of our people. Only then can we enjoy real national harmony and unity. The working class is not exploitative and it is only the national unity built around the interests of the workers that can transcend the parochialism, chauvinism and religious strife that bisect our society.

It is worth mentioning that the working class movement has always been conscious of the vital need for unity. Experience has shown that unifying the ranks of the workers often results in colossal successes and achievements. That is why the adversaries of the working class always try untiringly to sow divisions within its ranks. It is also common knowledge that the working class cannot ultimately eradicate capitalist exploitation without aligning itself to the broad masses. Unity is vital for the working class in its struggle for the twofold goal of securing the interests of the workers and the overall interests of the nation.

The modern history of this country is illuminating about the working class's quest for unity. The workers have always come to the assistance of the peasants, the students etc. in their struggle. The massive solidarity on the part of the trade union movement with the police force strike of 1951 bears testimony to the positive attitudes of the working class. The workers' movement was even in alliance with the national commercial bourgeoisie during the struggle for economic and political independence.

The CP identifies itself with the ideology of the working class. That is why the CP is an incarnation of national unity, as it spreads all over the country, cutting across tribalism, sectarianism, regionalism and religious divisions. The programme of the CP suggests solutions for the problems of the whole Sudan, by no means favouring one sect or region or social grouping to the others. It is the only party in Sudan whose leaders are composed of workers, women, Southerners and intellectuals who come from different religions, tribal backgrounds and all the regions of the country. They have been democratically elected, not appointed by a presidential decree or an ordinance from the leader of a sect. The merits that qualify them for leadership are their dedication to the struggle and their ideological and moral integrity.

Moreover, the CP is well known for its broadminded and undogmatic approach. We played active roles in all the nationalist and anti-colonial fronts, even those that included bourgeois parties. We were a party to all political groupings, co-ordinating efforts or fronts that endeavoured to unify the masses, starting from the Front for the Struggle Against the Legislative Assembly in 1948 until today.

One of the most outstanding achievements of the CP in the field of national unity is its theorising for and handling of the issue of Southern Sudan. It was the first party to adopt the 'special status' concept, as early as the 1953 pre-independence elections, in recognition of the objective differences between the two parts of the country. During the 1955 mutiny, the CP was the only party that did not succumb to the emotions of revenge and call for bloody reprisals. We provided a cool and objective analysis of the situation, calling upon the government and the (Northern) army to exercise self- control. We demanded the rescinding of the death sentences issued against the leaders of the mutiny and we appealed for magnanimous treatment of the convicts. In its Third Conference, which convened six months after the mutiny, the CP came forward with the slogan 'regional self-autonomy for the South'. That was an utterly unprecedented achievement in the history of Sudanese politics.

The CP was unmatched in issuing a daily English paper called Advance, addressed to the Southern readers, since 1958. It has also issued a series of publications in English tackling the problem of Southern Sudan, always calling upon our Southern brethren to align themselves to the Northern movements of the working class and democratic forces in a unified struggle for a national democratic Sudan.

The CP's efforts culminated in the Declaration of 9 June 1969, which was extracted from the CP's manifesto. The Declaration was broadcast by the Minister of Southern Affairs, the late Comrade Joseph Garang (who was a member of the CP's Politbureau until he was executed by Nimeiri during the counter coup of 22 July 1971). The CP's ideas on the problem of Southern Sudan were embodied in the Declaration, as evidenced by this quotation:

“We deem it of paramount importance that a democratic and socialist movement should be allowed to develop in the South as a prerequisite for the realisation of our aspirations of progress both in the North and the South.”

Only when the progressive movement matures in the South can we be assured of a lasting application of the principle of Self-Autonomy, and that is the most powerful antidote to the colonialist intrigues currently going on in the South. The regime started in 1969 by adopting the CP's programme for the South. No sooner had they staged their counter coup of 1971 than they reneged on everything they declared on 9 June 1969. That accounts for the series of crises ravaging the South at the moment. The realities of the situation in the Sudan look like the following:

1. National unity is jeopardised primarily by the present anti-democratic policies of the regime. National unity cannot thrive except in democracy, and the free will of the Southern people cannot be realised except in a democratic atmosphere.

2. Because the regime follows a capitalist path, the problem of the South as a region that needs special care is sustained. Capitalists are motivated by nothing except quick profit. The traditional sector is henceforth subjected to ruthless plunder on the part of the imperialists and Arab finance capital in collaboration with the local compradors. Regions such as the South suffer from the neglect of long-term projects in favour of short term investments that bring fast gains for the investors. Our resources have waned, in the process and the already existing social and economic structures have been obliterated. Consequently, development continues to be uneven between the various regions of Sudan, and the Southern situation in particular has gone from bad to worse. Likewise, the capitalist's foul intervention has created other problems along the 'Savanna Zone', where the indigenous nomadic tribes have been frustrated by the phenomenal spread of mechanised plantations owned by urban compradors and Arab princes. The regime has drawn a veil of secrecy upon the news of the tribal wars going on currently in the 'Savanna Zone'.

The regime's propaganda machinery explains all these problems away in terms of administrative complications. They preach decentralisation as the remedy. As a matter of fact, the regime is capitalising on the under-development of such regions as the South to consolidate its dictatorial grip.It is the same old tactic of divide and rule; that is why they have done littleto reconcile the warring tribes along the 'Savanna Zone'. And from that, not from the working class nor the CP, the real menace to national unity is posed.

Mr President and members of the court. Another accusation I and the CP are facing is 'opposition to the government'. According to the prosecution, this is against the law. The right to oppose, like the right to support any particular regime, should have been an automatic and irrevocable right of all citizens. Confiscating it runs counter to human nature.

The experience of our people shows that a serious and deep-rooted opposition will be impossible to eradicate by force. The objective causes of such an opposition are related to the distinctions between the various social forces in the society. Contradictions are natural and inevitable in a multi-class society. Add to that the ethnic, cultural and religious divisions within our own society. What a great pity the Sudanese people have always been denied the opportunity to air those differences in a healthy democratic atmosphere!

Nor is the present regime the first to be opposed. Since the first days of independence the bourgeois parties have been involved in conflicts and squabbles. Simultaneously, consciousness grew of another contradiction -- that between all bourgeois parties and the classes they represent on the one hand, and the masses of workers, peasants and revolutionary intelligentsiaon the other. The former tried to perpetuate the colonial political andeconomic structures, while the latter aspired to translate independence into better living conditions for the masses. The progressive camp wanted to participate in the building of a new Sudan by means of a national democratic revolution that paves the way for socialism.

In the aftermath of the October uprising, two major programmes came to the surface, one adopted by the national/democratic forces and the otherpropagated by the forces of capitalist development. The first called for a democratic constitution and the liberation of the economy from the dominance of foreign capital pursuing following a national/democratic path of development and an anti-imperialist foreign policy. The latter, that of the reactionary bloc, called for a presidential republic and the curtailment of democratic rights as a precondition for imposing the capitalist path of development.

When the present "May" regime first came to power it adopted the programme of the national democratic forces. However, it did not take the leadership long to renounce it in a dramatic reversal that antagonised the progressive forces who had found the regime's programme favourable. The differences with those forces grew when the regime started to confiscate freedoms. By July 1971, the political turbulance reached a crescendo when the national democratic forces within the army staged a coup that lasted for three days. Their defeat at the hands of the present regime marked the beginning of a reign of terror. The leaders of the July movement were summarily court martialed and three of the leaders of the CP were executed. Hundreds of communists and democrats were detained and dismissed from their jobs.

The counter revolution unleashed in the wake of July 1971 laid the foundations for the capitalist path, thereby achieving the most important goal in the rightist programme. Total lack of democracy descended on our country. The trade unions were transformed into puppets and all parties and organisations were completely banned.

Mr President and members of the court. Eleven years have elapsed since this regime came to power. On the economic level we still export the same crops, among which cotton is still predominant. We import the same manufactured goods. If there is change, it is for the worse. The regime has encouraged the influx of foreign monopoly capital, namely from the Arab countries, the multinationals, and neo-colonialist institutions. The country is drained of foreign exchange while indebtedness to the IMF and foreign commercial banks has exceeded $5 billion. The loans were actually squandered on ill-conceived projects, on augmenting the bureaucracy of the SSO and the SU and on luxurious and ostentatious installations.

Bad planning, impetuousness and inefficiency are rampant throughout the economic sectors. Productivity has deteriorated to the lowest ebb in our modern history. The downward spiral in the balance of payments and the chronic deficits in the budgets have been worsened rather than remedied by the accelerating taxes, loans from local and foreign banks and finance from abroad. In short, the country's economy is in shambles. The five-year plan has been abolished. The trend is just to encourage foreign investment, irrespective of the fields which the foreign investors choose for their activities. Curbing of government expenditure has resulted in mass unemployment, and of course no alternative employment has ever been considered. Thousands of people are left with no alternative but to emigrate. The government has embarked on a plan of weakening the public sector. Their objective is its ultimate disintegration, with a view to transferring the profitable projects to the private sector. Our people bear the brunt of these policies by having to cope with the ever rising direct and indirect taxes. They suffer the consequences of the inflation in the form of ever soaring prices and dwindling incomes.

Economic activity is in the hands of neo-colonialism and the parasitic capitalism. A plethora of non-ethical channels for quick wealth have been opened up by the regime for a close-knit elite. Our society is beset by corruption, graft and malpractice of all types. The atmosphere is rampant with the moral disintegration and the scandalous behaviour of ministers and government officials. The majority of our people, on the other hand, live from hand to mouth, even worse. They are deprived of facilities in the fields of housing, sanitation and education. They live in horrible conditions of dire poverty and epidemics.

The regime's foreign policy is one of relinquishing the country's independence and jeopardising its sovereignty and territorial integrity. The regime has aligned itself to Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the US. I would like to make three points in this respect.

1. The regime has been producing quixotic noises about an impending Soviet invasion through neighbouring countries. Everybody knows that the Soviet Union has no geopolitical stakes in our country and it has always been the noble friend of our people and of all the Arab peoples. The imagined invasion is merely the regime's pretext for backing away from non-alignment and falling onto the lap of American imperialism. The head of the regime has shamelessly declared that his regime is a pawn of the American led alliance directed against the peoples of the region. The US has now been offered naval, air and other facilities in the Sudan, to be used by the Rapid Deployment Force (RDF) to subjugate the Arab and African peoples and to protect American interests.

2. The regime has signed a military pact with Egypt according to which any internal turmoil in either of the two countries is tantamount to foreign invasion. Under the circumstance the other signatory should come in with instantaneous assistance, even if not asked to do so. The regime has recently signed a 'treaty of economic and political integration' with Egypt. It is to be viewed in the light of the American hegemony over both Sudan and Egypt. Within this context, joint military manoeuvres were recently conducted on Sudanese soil by American, Egyptian and Sudanese troops (Operation Bright Star).

3. The regime has always been outspoken in its support of the Camp David Accord. It is now more forthcoming than ever; following the fierce Zionist/imperialist attack on the Palestinian and Arab people, the regime is no longer shy of fully assuming it's role as an American puppet.

Our independence was priced at heroic sacrifices, and our people have never ceased defending it. They defeated all the post-independence American attempts to turn Sudan into a client state, c.f. the Middle East Alliance, the Eisenhower Plan, the American Aid Project and the Islamic Pact. Yet, the regime deliberately oblivious of this history, has transformed our country into a tunnel through which military aid is syphoned to other puppets in the area e.g. Mobutu of Zaire, the French-backed regime of Central Africa and Hussein Habre of Chad. Our country is involved in aggressive activities against Libya, Ethiopia and Southern Yemen. Our role as supporters of the Arab and African Liberation movements has been reversed. The regime flagrantly violates the principles of non-alignment.

Mr President and members of the court. I was asked in a previous session about the CP's position concerning the so-called 'national reconciliation'. The CP has issued a number of statements on the issue of reconciliation. As you know, the campaign for the so-called 'national reconciliation' was a consequence of one of the regime's political crises. It was a fake slogan designed for local consumption. If they were in any way genuine the regime should have accompanied their offer with the restoration of democracy. They failed to do that.

The CP was not intransigent as regards the dialogue with the regime. We were actually involved in preliminary talks with some of the regime's leading figures. We asked them a vital question to which we have hitherto received no answer. What would happen to our negotiating team if they emerged from under-cover, took part in the negotiations and failed to arrive at an agreement with the regime?

The reconciliation was a thinly veiled attempt by the regime to mark time and distract people's attention from their economic dilemma. Their promises to rescind the anti-democratic laws were just a camouflage for further repression. Five years after the reconciliation was launched, the country is still under emergency laws. At this moment 250 political detainees are languishing in the abodes of Kober [Cooper Prison in Khartoum], Port Sudan and Medani. Some of them have been in detention for 3-7 years, without trial. Political prisoners are still tortured, and only two weeks ago one of them was physically tortured in my hearing.

Mr President and members of the court. Our country is in the crux of a crisis. We appeal to all the patriots of Sudan to rally round two slogans, if we are to salvage our country:

1. The abolition of all fascist laws and the release of political detainees.

2. The recovery of our identity and national sovereignty by condemning the Camp David Accord and withdrawal from all treaties and pacts with the US and Egypt.

Achieving these two objectives will pave the way for building the Sudan of the future. We can then proceed to achieve the following strategies:

1. The erection of a democratic society on the firm foundations of a just and democratic constitution that safeguards civil liberties and basic rights. It should guarantee the independence of the judiciary and restore the rule of law. Legislative authority should rest with a democratically elected parliament to which the executive authority should be answerable. The head of the state should have limited mandatory powers vis-a-vis the sovereign's ceremonial activities.

2. We should once again revert to our positive role among the Arab and African progressive movements. We should follow an independent foreign policy built on vehement opposition to neo-colonialism, on the one hand, and cordiality with the socialist and non-aligned countries on the other.

3. We must release our economy from the fetters of foreign monopolies. We should begin by an urgent action programme to salvage the services' sector and parastatal corporations. Another urgent priority is a new fiscal policy and a development programme that should aspire to uplift the sufferings of the masses. The wage structure should be revised so that the highest salary should by no means exceed tenfold the lowest. The basic commodities should be made available at stable and affordable prices.

Simultaneously, we should embark on a long term development plan whose primary objective is redressing the uneven development between the various regions. Closely connected to this is the gradual modernisation of the traditional sector.

Mr President and members of the court. This is not my first time to be tried for my political convictions. I have been involved in our people's struggle since my very early days. I have not been stimulated by any individualistic tendency to make the above statements. I find no gratification except in welding myself to the whole which is the Sudanese revolutionary forces and in claiming no gratuity for that. I realise myself only through identification with the values and aspirations of my people's struggle. I identify myself with the heroic history of our people, and I am a product of that history.

That is why this trial is not intended for me alone. It is a desperate attempt on the part of the despotic May regime to uproot the movement and obliterate the history which I represent. This will prove an intractable mirage.

Submitted by Terry Townsend on Sun, 12/04/2011 - 20:58


December 1, 2011

To the Central Committee of the Sudanese Communist Party

Dear Comrades,

The Socialist Alliance of Australia offers sincere condolences on the death of Al Tijani Al Tayeb.

As one of the founders of the Sudanese Communist Party and someone who dedicated some seven decades of his life to the Sudanese people’s struggle, Al Tijani Al Tayeb’s passing represents a great loss for the left in Sudan and internationally.

Al Tijani Al Tayeb’s steadfast commitment to the struggle in the face of enormous challenges and often great hardship provides a heroic example to new generations of revolutionary activists.

We have published a tribute to Comrade Al Tijani in Green Left Weekly: Hopefully this will help to alert more people among the progressive movements in the English-speaking world to the extraordinary contribution made by Al Tijani Al Tayeb to the revolutionary movement.

Al Tijani Al Tayeb’s legacy will undoubtedly remain alive in the continued struggles of the Communist Party and the people of Sudan.

Our deepest sympathy to Al Tijani’s family and comrades.

In solidarity,

Peter BoyleNational Convenor

Socialist Alliance (Australia)