KHARTOUM (Sudanow) - The delay in the announcement of the proposed government of national concord has opened the door wide open before speculations and rumors about the causes of the delay and about who will be in and who will be out of the new cabinet.
According to government revelations, the new government was supposed to be declared early April once President Bashir is back from a state visit to Ethiopia.
This long wait for the new government had seen no new development other than the announcement by the opposition Popular Congress Party (PCP) of the Late Islamist Leader Dr. Hassan al-Turabi of its candidates in the proposed government despite its declared position that it would not be part of the new government if the National Assembly (parliament) does not rubberstamp its document of liberties, believed to be drafted by Turabi before his death.
The document of liberties stipulates the freedom of faith, the freedom of a woman to espouse whomever she wishes without a legal consent from her guardian and freedom of all sorts of expression. The document also sought to confine the jurisdiction of the state security to the collection of information. The parliament has rejected these amendments after a series of discussions with the concerned parties.
Some observers attribute the delay in the formation of the new government to intra-partisan conflicts. For instance the PCP’s announcement of its candidates had created a crisis in the party that led to the resignation of Kamal Omar from his office as Political Secretary of the Party. Omar had also brushed aside a nomination to represent the Party in parliament. Omar had played a big role in the National Dialogue Conference according to which the government of national concord will be formed.
Another cause of the delay is thought to be the differences within the parties that took part in the Dialogue like the Democratic Unionists and splinter groups from the National Umma Party that seemed unsettled about their lists of nominees.
Even the ruling NCP is not free from strong internal differences that may have caused the delay. According to a report published by al-Sudani daily a group within the Party is uneasy about the shelving of some of its historical leaderships and the emergence of new leaderships. This development, that group feels, may undermine the Party which is supposed to prepare for the 2020 elections. This group feels that the new young cadres may not be capable of challenging established leaderships of the other political parties.
Parallel to this group is an influential group that supports the party reform document and deems it necessary that the Party’s historical leaderships should be dedicated to organizational action in preparation for the next elections.
The Government had also faced the thorny problem of finding a suitable government office for chairman of the Liberation and Justice Party, Dr. al-Tijani al-Sisi, who had signed the Doha Peace Agreement with the Government in 2011 that brought relative stability to Darfur. Leaks say Sisi was seeking the post of Vice President of the Republic and was upset and left the country when the government seemed reluctant about the matter.
However, the National Liberation and Justice Party spokesman Ahmad Fadl Abdallah has confirmed that his party would participate in the new government and had virtually nominated Ms. Asia Mohammad Abdallah Idris for a federal ministry and Ibrahim Yousif Abdallah for the post of state minister.
Fadl said Dr. Sisi had travelled abroad “for well-known reasons and was not because he was angry,” and that Sisi “will be back to the country during the coming days to contribute to the achievement of the national agenda as a member of parliament and in his capacity as Party leader.”
For his part, National Congress Party leading figure Abdelmalik al-Berair is giving different reasons for the delay in the formation of the new cabinet.
He told Akhir Lahza daily that First Vice President, Prime Minister, Bakri Hassan Salih had rejected a number of nominees presented by the political parties as “incompatible with requirements of the coming phase that requires certain specifications.”
“In addition, some of those nominees do not hold the necessary educational qualifications for assuming constitutional posts,” added Berair.
According to some observers, those differences were a reflection of the political forces pre-occupation with their share in the government rather than with what should be done to take the country out of its political and economic crises.
In either case, any judgment about the new government would hinge upon what it could achieve up to 2020, the date of the next general elections.
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