On January 1, 2008, U.S. citizen and United States Agency for International Development (USAID) employee John Granville and his Sudanese driver, Abdelrahman Abbas Rahama, were shot and killed on their way home from a New Year’s Eve celebration in Khartoum, Sudan. Two groups separately claimed responsibility for the murders: the now-defunct al-Qaida in the Lands of the Two Niles (AQTN) and Ansar al-Tawhid (Supporters of Monotheism).
Five men were tried and convicted in the Sudanese legal system for their involvement in the murders. Abdelraouf Abu Zaid Mohamed Hamza, Mohamed Makawi Ibrahim Mohamed, Abdelbasit Alhaj Alhassan Haj Hamad, and Mohanad Osman Yousif Mohamed were sentenced to death by hanging, but escaped from Khartoum’s Khober Prison one year after their conviction. Mohanad reportedly died in Somalia in May 2011. Abdelraouf was recaptured by Sudanese authorities. Makawi and Abdelbasit remain at large.
Abdelrahman Abbas Rahama, 39, was born in Juba, Sudan. He began his USAID career in 2004 as one of the original members of the USAID Disaster Assistance Response Team for Darfur, Sudan. He was hired as a driver for the USAID/Sudan mission in Khartoum in November 2005.
John Granville, 33, was from Buffalo, New York. He had worked on USAID democracy and governance programs in Sudan for more than three years, helping distribute thousands of solar-powered radios to southern Sudan, a region isolated by more than two decades of war, to inform citizens of their rights and help them prepare for elections. Granville served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Cameroon from 1997 to 1999 and received a Fulbright fellowship thereafter to conduct independent research in Cameroon.
The Rewards for Justice program is offering a reward of up to $5 million for information that brings to justice those responsible for this attack.