Sudanese-American councilman-elect for Alexandria, Virginia, Mohamed Seifeldein.
By John Tanza
The number of Sudanese-Americans holding elected public office within the United States has doubled – there are currently two.
Mohamed Seifeldein won a city council seat on November 6 in Alexandria, Virginia, a suburb of the capital, Washington. He follows within the footsteps of Mazahir Salih, who was elected to a city council seat in Iowa City, Iowa in 2017.
Seifeldein, who prefers to be called “Mo,” came to the U.S. about 20 years ago. He was born in Sudan as well as grew up there during the civil war which culminated in South Sudan’s independence.
“I came here due to which situation, seeking a better opportunity as well as security as well as was fortunate enough to land here within the D.C. metropolitan area as well as I’ve been here since,” Seifeldein told VOA’s South Sudan in Focus in an interview Tuesday.
Seifeldein says which when he came to the U.S., he didn’t speak a word of English, as well as the item took him years of study as well as practice to learn the language as well as culture.
Fast forward two decades, as well as Seifeldein is usually not only a newly-elected Alexandria council member however a successful attorney who founded a law firm, Seifeldein as well as Associates.
He says the item’s no secret which the item takes a lot of money to run for public office, something he didn’t have.
Seifeldein says he raised the least amount of money of all the city council candidates within the primary, $9,800 to be exact, however still won.
“We had which struggle, we had no name recognition, as well as we also had the challenges of being a newcomer, as well as immigrant as well, however thanks to the Alexandria community, as well as a very organized, grassroots campaign, which mostly included foreigners, Sudanese, as well as various other Africans as well,” Seifeldein told VOA.
Seifeldein says he wants to make sure immigrants have a voice in Alexandria.
“We’re talking about education for all, health care as well as just producing sure the city is usually safe for them as well as which they have a voice,” Seifeldein said.