List of heads of state of Sudan

This article lists the heads of state of Sudan since the country's independence in 1956.

Chairman of the Transitional Sovereignty Council of the Republic of the Sudan
رئيس مجلس السيادة الإنتقالي جمهورية السودان
Abdel Fattah al-Burhan
since 25 October 2021
ResidenceRepublican Palace, Khartoum
Formation17 November 1958
First holderFive-member Sovereignty Council (collective presidency)
DeputyDeputy Chairman of the Transitional Sovereignty Council
Salary29,320 USD annually[1]

History of the office

Since independence was proclaimed on 1 January 1956, six individuals (and three multi-member sovereignty councils) have served as head of state of Sudan, currently under the title President of the Republic of the Sudan. Prior to independence, Sudan was governed as a condominium by Egypt and the United Kingdom, under the name Anglo-Egyptian Sudan. As such, executive power was vested in a dyarchy consisting of both countries' heads of state – at the time of independence, the Queen of the United Kingdom (Elizabeth II) and the Egyptian Revolutionary Command Council (headed by Gamal Abdel Nasser). Immediately following independence, the role of head of state was filled by a five-member Sovereignty Council, with rival nationalist factions unable to agree on a single candidate. In November 1958, General Ibrahim Abboud led a military coup d'état, assuming the role of head of state as Chairman of the Supreme Council. Assuming the title of president in 1964, he resigned later that year due to general discontent around the rule of the military regime. Abboud was succeeded by a senior civil servant, Sirr Al-Khatim Al-Khalifa, who served as acting president for 18 days before transferring executive authority to a Committee of Sovereignty.

Ismail al-Azhari, the leader of the National Unionist Party, was made president in July 1965; he ruled with limited power until he was deposed in a 1969 military coup. The military officers responsible for the coup established the National Revolutionary Command Council, chaired by Jaafar Nimeiry. Nimeiry, the leader of the newly formed Sudanese Socialist Union, assumed the position of president in 1971, and subsequently established a one-party state, which existed until 1985, when a group of military officers overthrew his government and established the 1985 Transitional Military Council, led by Field Marshal Abdel Rahman Swar al-Dahab. Ahmed al-Mirghani succeeded to the relatively powerless position of Chairman of the Supreme Council in 1986, after multi-party election held that year. He was deposed in a 1989 military coup led by Lieutenant-General Omar al-Bashir. Al-Bashir served as head of state, under the title of Chairman of the Revolutionary Command Council for National Salvation from 1989 to 1993 and as president from 1993 to 2019 (and from 1996 as the leader of the National Congress Party). Al-Bashir was removed from power by the Sudanese Armed Forces on 11 April 2019, amid the Sudanese Revolution after holding the office for nearly 30 years. Lieutenant-General Ahmed Awad Ibn Auf took control of Sudan without becoming head of state, established the 2019 Transitional Military Council, but resigned the following day in favor of Lieutenant-General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan.[2] The Transitional Military Council was replaced with the Sovereignty Council on 20 August 2019, under the chairmanship of al-Burhan. The Sovereignty Council, an 11-member civilian-military collective head of state, is designed to lead the country for 39 months in the transition to democracy, which is supposed to end with the next general election.[3] The Sovereignty Council was dissolved by al-Burhan on 25 October 2021, following a coup d'état.[4]

Titles of heads of state

Heads of state of Sudan (1956–present)

(Dates in italics indicate de facto continuation of office)

No. Portrait Name
Elected Term of office Political party
Took office Left office Time in office

Republic of the Sudan (1956–1969)

1 Sovereignty Council
[lower-alpha 1]
1 January 1956 17 November 1958
2 years, 320 days Multipartisan
2 Ibrahim Abboud
17 November 1958 16 November 1964
5 years, 365 days Military
Sirr Al-Khatim Al-Khalifa
Acting President
16 November 1964 3 December 1964 17 days National Umma Party
3 First Committee of Sovereignty
[lower-alpha 2]
3 December 1964 10 June 1965 189 days Multipartisan
4 Second Committee of Sovereignty
[lower-alpha 3]
10 June 1965 8 July 1965 28 days
5 Ismail al-Azhari
8 July 1965 25 May 1969
3 years, 321 days Democratic Unionist Party

Democratic Republic of the Sudan (1969–1985)

6 Jaafar Nimeiry
[lower-alpha 4]
1971[lower-alpha 5]
25 May 1969 6 April 1985
15 years, 316 days Military /
Sudanese Socialist Union

Republic of the Sudan (1985–2019)

7 Abdel Rahman Swar al-Dahab
6 April 1985 6 May 1986[lower-alpha 6] 1 year, 30 days Military
8 Ahmed al-Mirghani
6 May 1986 30 June 1989
3 years, 55 days Democratic Unionist Party
9 Omar al-Bashir
(born 1944)
30 June 1989 11 April 2019
29 years, 285 days Military /
National Congress Party

Transitional period (2019–present)

10 Ahmed Awad Ibn Auf
(born 1957)
11 April 2019 12 April 2019
1 day Military /
National Congress Party
11 Abdel Fattah al-Burhan
(born 1960)
12 April 2019 20 August 2019 130 days Military
12 Sovereignty Council
[lower-alpha 7]
20 August 2019 25 October 2021
2 years, 66 days Multipartisan
(FFC and TMC)
(11) Abdel Fattah al-Burhan
(born 1960)
25 October 2021 Incumbent 1 year, 98 days Military


Sovereignty Council of SudanAbdel Fattah al-BurhanAhmed Awad Ibn AufOmar al-BashirAhmed al-MirghaniAbdel Rahman Swar al-DahabJaafar NimeiryIsmail al-AzhariSirr Al-Khatim Al-KhalifaIbrahim Abboud

Latest election


  1. Members: Abdel Fattah Muhammad al-Maghrabi, Muhammad Ahmad Yasin, Ahmad Muhammad Salih, Muhammad Othman al-Dardiri and Siricio Iro Wani.
  2. Members: Abdel Halim Muhammad, Tijani al-Mahi, Mubarak Shaddad, Ibrahim Yusuf Sulayman and Luigi Adwok Bong Gicomeho.
  3. Members: Ismail al-Azhari, Abdullah al-Fadil al-Mahdi, Luigi Adwok Bong Gicomeho, Abdel Halim Muhammad and Khidr Hamad.
  4. Briefly interrupted during the 19–22 July 1971 coup d'état.
  5. Presidency referendum.
  6. Handed over power to the civilian government after the 1986 parliamentary election.
  7. Members:[5] Chairman Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, Yasser al-Atta, Shams al-Din Khabbashi, Ibrahim Jabir Karim, Aisha Musa el-Said, Siddiq Tawer, Mohamed al-Faki, Hassan Sheikh Idris, Mohammed Hassan al-Ta'ishi[6] and Raja Nicola.

See also


  1. "The highest and lowest paid African presidents - Business Daily". Business Daily. 27 December 2020.
  2. El Sirgany, Sarah; Elbagir, Nima; Abdullah, Yasir (11 April 2019). "Sudan's President Bashir forced out in military coup". CNN. Retrieved 12 April 2019.
  3. "Sudan forms 11-member sovereign council, headed by al-Burhan". Al Jazeera. 1 June 2021. Retrieved 20 August 2019.
  4. "Sudan's Burhan declares state of emergency, dissolves government". Reuters. 25 October 2021. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  5. "Sudan opposition coalition appoints five civilian members of sovereign council". Thomson Reuters. 18 August 2019. Archived from the original on 18 August 2019. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  6. "FFC finally agree on nominees for Sudan's Sovereign Council". Sudan Tribune. 20 August 2019. Archived from the original on 20 August 2019. Retrieved 20 August 2019.
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