May 3, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The National Umma Party (NUP) voted on Friday to appoint the head of the party’s Political Secretariat, Sara Nugdalla, as its next secretary-general.
- Sarah Nugdalla (ST)
This followed a proposal by the party chief Al-Sadiq Al-Mahdi during the Central Commission meeting which started on Thursday to relieve Ibrahim al-Amin in light of his “failure” to create a consensual secretariat among other reasons.
Al-Mahdi tabled three names including Nugdulla but offered special praise to her. The other two eventually withdrew their nomination. This is the first time the party has picked a female figure for the position.
Observers say the former Prime Minister has been uneasy with the election of Al-Amin in 2012 over his predecessor Sideeg Ismail who is viewed suspiciously by the NUP base as being close to the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) but is strongly backed by Al-Mahdi.
Al-Mahdi afterward appointed Ismail as his vice-president in a move that was viewed as a challenge to his ouster from the secretary-general post.
Al-Amin accused Al-Mahdi subtly at first then publicly of interfering in his work and seeking to force him to appoint certain figures to the secretariat.
He also suggested that the NUP’s current challenge is between those who want rapprochement with NCP and those who oppose it like himself.
Al-Amin has boycotted the meetings amid reports that he refuses to recognise any move to oust him given that the current term of the Central Commission has expired a year ago and therefore he argues that it is an interim one with no mandate except to prepare for the party’s general convention, which is tasked with electing members of the NUP to various bodies.