Sudan’s Banking System Paralyzed by War, Leaving Depositors Unable to Access Savings

…By Roland Peterson for TDPel Media. On a scorching sidewalk, Ibrahim Said hopes to withdraw his savings from the bank, but the wait seems unending due to the Sudan war that has brought the country’s financial system to a standstill.

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Long Wait for Withdrawals

Said is among the many depositors who have formed queues at a branch of the Bank of Khartoum in Madani, a city southeast of the capital, in an attempt to recover their savings.

He arrived at the bank early in the morning, but the ongoing fighting between the army and paramilitary forces has prevented him from accessing his funds.

Said, like half a million others who fled Khartoum for safer cities, managed to escape with only a small amount of cash when the capital was rocked by airstrikes and shelling.

Anxiety and Restricted Cash

The situation at the bank is a source of anxiety for people like Ishraq al-Rih, who has been visiting the same branch for three days, only to find the doors closed each time.

They open briefly, allowing in only a few people, leaving the rest to return the next day.

Families are growing more anxious as they ration their cash, fearing the implications of looted banks and empty safes shown in online videos.

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Locked Out of Savings

Ahmed Abdelaziz stands outside the closed gate of Omdurman National Bank, frustrated that he cannot access his money.

Despite settling in Madani, away from the capital’s direct battles, he is still affected by the ongoing conflict.

The servers controlling the operations of every bank are located in Khartoum, which employees cannot reach due to the fighting.

Branches in unaffected states have lost contact with headquarters, preventing managers from replenishing reserves or allowing withdrawals.

Banking Sector Standstill

Amid a paralyzed sector, General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the army chief, froze Rapid Support Forces’ (RSF) assets and dismissed the central bank governor.

Bank-to-bank payments have been halted, with no transfers allowed between accounts.

Sudan’s banking sector was already fragile, with several undercapitalized banks, due to decades of international sanctions, corruption, and economic struggles.

The country’s assets, totaling $11.2 billion at the end of 2019, are now uncertain as fighters have looted banks and emptied safes.

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Desperate Times

Sudan’s banking federation assures clients that their assets and records are intact and promises to restore banking services when conditions permit.

However, despite ceasefire pledges and promises to restore services, the situation has remained unchanged for over a month.

Depositors like Said, Rih, and Abdelaziz are left with no choice but to find alternative means to obtain essential goods like flour and petrol, despite the soaring prices caused by the conflict.

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About the Author:

Roland Peterson is a seasoned and experienced writer with over 10 years of experience in the field. He has a special interest in news and has been writing about current events for many years. When he’s not busy writing, Roland enjoys spending time in nature and can often be found exploring the great outdoors. He also loves to relax and unwind by sipping coffee at his favorite coffee shop (Manhattan Espresso) while brainstorming ideas for his next article on TDPel Media. Roland is a dedicated writer who is passionate about delivering informative and engaging content to his readers. He lives in New York, USA.

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