Migration of Sudanese to Egypt after the 2019 revolution

The International Organization for Migration stated that the instability in Sudan since 2019 has prompted thousands of Sudanese to seek safe haven in Egypt and that the number of Sudanese residing there has reached four million.

These data refer to the deterioration of the political, social and economic conditions and the suffering inflicted on the Sudanese people which is still worsening day after day.

People migrate to Egypt with different motives:-

The growing unemployment rates are pushing large numbers of Sudanese youth to immigrate, some of them venture to Europe by sea after arriving in Libya, but Egypt has become an easy, low-cost destination, so the dreamiest young people turn to it.

The Egyptian Consulate in Khartoum is crowded with queues of young people requesting a visa to enter, dozens of them are lined up in long queues waiting for their applications to be processed.

Mugtaba Ali Hussein, 27 years old, seemed happy. Finally, he was issued an entry visa. We asked him: What are you going to do in Egypt? He replied: What will I do by waiting here, there is no glimmer of hope, I spent years looking for a job opportunity in vain, perhaps travelling is an opportunity for change. Mugtaba said that some of his friends preceded him there and that they encouraged him to come to them, and he allowed us, upon our request, to talk to one of them, Osman Al-Sheikh” said: he has been frequently visiting Egypt for years carrying goods to Sudan, until he was cut off there during a pandemic coronavirus closure, and then decided to reside permanently. Al-Sheikh says that he markets men’s clothing on the sidewalks at the threshold, and that work yields a satisfactory return for him, so he encourages his young acquaintances to come to Egypt.

He says “the Sudanese here form their own communities that provide support and subsidy for the new arrivals to find their way. They may face some difficulties, but they will overcome them at last.

Has Egypt become a destination for Sudanese students?

The University students who wish to continue their studies in Egypt constitute a large proportion of these immigrant youth:

Many students in Sudanese universities complain about the worsening of the university environment and the deterioration of the scientific standards. Then, after the December 2019 revolution, the phenomenon of accumulation of payments increased as a result of the suspension of studies and the closure of universities due to protests and political tensions.

A student at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Khartoum told us that every academic year has two batches of students now, and a female student from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine at the same university said: “We are facing the same problem of the accumulation of batched and the crowding of students, and this reality pushed large numbers of people to migrate to Egypt, Turkey and Cyprus, and as a result, the number of students in our class fell to less than half”.

Why do students prefer to study in Egyptian universities?

The Egyptian universities are witnessing stability, the studies are regular, and the teaching system meets international standards. This is how “Mohamed Zul-Noon”, the father of a student at a faculty of medicine, began his talk to “Sudan Tribune”

Zul-Nun says: “My daughter scored (94.6) in the Sudanese Certificate Exam in 2021 and was admitted into the Faculty of Medicine at Khartoum North University. The university environment was deteriorating and the faculty was facing problems, especially regarding the teaching hospital, and it seemed that the university was suffering, like other universities, from problems related to the accumulation of batches, the lack of teaching staff, and the lecture schedule is often cancelled.”

He said “This is why we decided to travel to Egypt so that my daughter could complete her studies in medicine, and we found that the financial costs are less or close to the student’s expenses in Sudan. Here I would like to refer to an important point, which is that the Sudanese student pays 10% of the fees imposed on foreign students, in addition to the fees set for application and the administrative fees that are paid once, and that was a tempting offer. Today, in the same faculty where my daughter is studying among approximately 500 Sudanese students out of a total of 1200 students at the same faculty.”

A report by the International Organization for Migration indicates that Egypt has been generous in integrating migrants, refugees and asylum seekers into national education and health systems, on an equal footing with the Egyptians in many cases, despite the challenges faced by these sectors and the high economic costs.

Large numbers of Sudanese people travel to Egypt for treatment and hospitalization in Egyptian hospitals, but they often return and do not stay there for a long time.

Economic migration to Egypt in search of a better life:-

The most circulated stories in Khartoum societies include the talking about Sudanese families who sell their property and move to live in Egypt, fleeing the worsening economic crises.

“Sudan is facing a food crisis as a result of the effects of armed conflict, reduced production of staple crops and economic disruption,” said the latest report of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

According to the FAO: 11.7 million people in Sudan, nearly a quarter of the country’s population, are expected to face severe hunger at the height of the dry season starting in September 2022, an increase of nearly two million people compared to the same period last year.”

How did the high prices and poor services lead to the emigration of entire families?

Since the fall of the “Omer Al-Bashir” regime, Sudan has witnessed aggravating crises, food shortages and a terrible deterioration in public services. People spend long times in front of bakeries in order to get a bundle of loaves, while there is no cooking gas and hours of electricity cuts in homes, except for the high price wave. And the high prices that affected the lives of millions of Sudanese citizens.

I left with my family to live in Cairo due to the lack of the basic requirements of life in Sudan.”

Magdalene, a Sudanese woman, and mother of three children had the experience of leaving Sudan with her entire family to settle in Egypt. She spoke to the “Sudan Tribune” about her experience. She said: “We left due to the lack of the basic requirements of life in Sudan such as education, health, security and safety. We found here a suitable environment.

Magdalene found in Cairo, according to her own description: educational institutions of a high level of efficiency and order, and was able to provide her children with an excellent education in an unparalleled study environment and with much lower financial costs than what is required in Sudan.

With a question about the daily living costs of a medium-sized family: Mrs Magdalene says, based on her condition, that (100) Egyptian pounds can cover the needs of that family, with other advantages of the living situation in Sudan related to the rental prices of apartments and the costs of movement and transportation within the city, which is within its scope. Less than what is found in Sudan.

The official Egyptian position appears to be lenient towards the Sudanese immigrants. During the past few days. Sudan Embassy in Cairo published an announcement directed to Sudanese residing in Egypt, in which it clarified that the Egyptian authorities decided to extend the allowed residence period for the Sudanese, whose residency has expired, for six months in order to settle their situation, starting from October 2, 2022.

Perhaps the state of leniency towards the Sudanese immigrants, whose numbers are steadily increasing, indicates a political position that the Egyptian regime does not want to tighten the pressure on the existing authority in Khartoum, with which it has a warm relationship.

But Egypt, whose population has grown to more than 100 million people, is experiencing economic difficulties that warn of major developments in its internal arenas, as it suffers from a high rate of inflation and a sharp decline in the value of the Egyptian pound against the US dollar, apart from the problem of the inflating external debt, and all these are all warnings that the Sudanese must be aware of before they land in Egypt.

Source: Sudan Tribune