Millions hidden in palace room and only president had key, witness says
Sudan’s ousted President Omar al-Bashir had sole access to the Presidential Palace room where millions in local and foreign currency were found, a defense witness and former head of the President’s Office said at the deposed leader’s latest court hearing on Saturday.
The witness said he personally handed a total of 10.65 million euros ($11.8 million) to various entities, including the Rapid Support Forces deputy head and the International University of Africa in Khartoum.
Bashir, who was ousted in a military coup in April following a lengthy popular uprising, is facing charges of corruption and illegal possession of foreign currency.
The former Sudanese president has been imprisoned in the same notorious Khartoum jail where generations of political dissidents were held under his three-decade rule.
“Al-Bashir was the only one with a key to the room where the money was found. My mission was only to deliver the cash as ordered by al-Bashir,” Maj. Gen. Yassir Bashir, who managed the office between 2015 and 2018, told the court.
He said he gave 5 million euros to the RSF’s deputy head, Abdul Rahim Dagalo, whose brother leads the paramilitary group and is widely believed to be the most influential general leading the country.
RSF leader Mohammed Hamdan Dagalo, also known as Hemedti, was present during the cash handover, the witness said.
The witness provided the court with the receipts of all the funds except the 5 million euros to Dagalo’s brother.
“I was not given a paper receipt for the delivered amount,” he added.
He gave 4.5 million euros ($5 million) to the university administration, which was managed mainly by al-Bashir’s ruling Congress party, he said. He also said he was ordered to give military personnel and civilians 200,000 euros ($222,000) for “treatment.”
A second witness who works as an accountant at the university confirmed the receipt of 4.5 million euros. He was told that the money was provided as “support” from the president.
The court was adjourned until Saturday.