From Emergency to Social Security in Sudan – Part II: The Donor Response



In the first part of this article I examined the crisis of subsistence in Sudan resulting from the commercial development of the North and the war in the South. An attempt was also made to relate the deepening impoverishment that this represents to a decay in governance. There is a tendency amongst donor and government officials, which is reflected in the literature, to regard the unfolding crisis as the transitory result of exceptional circumstances rather than as irreversible and therefore warranting a major revaluation of policy. As a consequence, social security and emergency planning has generally been of an emergency type. In this, the final part of the article, I examine the donor response in more detail. In particular, I argue that the decay of governance is so extensive that a donor-led system of social security has been imposed on Sudan. This system has a number of characteristics, the most important of which is that it exists in the absence of the political renewal and democratisation that would be necessary for the technical solutions it advocates to be implemented. The result is that donor-led security, which is typical of the Horn of Africa, proceeds in a relation of antagonism to the sovereign power, a situation which significantly reduces the efficiency of the measures undertaken.