General Awad Ibn Auf’s announcement came late on Friday as tens of thousands rallied in Sudan’s capital, Khartoum, demanding a civilian led transition after the military overthrow of the country’s longtime ruler, Omar al-Bashir.
“I, the head of the military council, announce I am giving up the post,” Ibn Auf said, adding he took the decision to preserve unity of the armed forces.
Ibn Auf said Lieutenant General Abdel Fattah Adelrahman Burhan will now head the transitional council.
Al Jazeera’s Hiba Morgan, reporting from Khartoum, said protesters in Khartoum greeted Ibn Auf’s announcement with “ululating and cheering”.
“People are celebrating on the streets; they are saying that they managed to topple President Omar al-Bashir after four months of protests and less than 48 hours after the military council took over, they managed to bring down Ibn Auf, too,” she said. (Al Jazeera News)
Lt Gen Abdelfattah Burhan, Inspector General of the Armed Forces, is not as close to Al Bashir, and the military transitional council clearly hope that Burhan will be more acceptable to the people, who are adamant that the interim government should include civilians, and not replace one military junta for another.
On Friday morning, prior to the announcement by Ibn Auf that he would step down, Burhan was seen speaking to one of the leaders of the opposition Sudanese Congress Party, Ibrahim El Sheikh, at the sit-in in front of the General Command of the Sudanese Armed Forces.