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DUP chapters across Sudan to boycott elections: spokesperson

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January 27, 2015 (KHARTOUM) – The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) led by Mohamed Osman al-Mirghani announced that party chapters in all states have decided to boycott elections scheduled in April.

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Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) leader Mohamed Osman al-Mirghani

The DUP’s deputy spokesperson, Mohamed Sid Ahmed Sir el-Khatim, told Sudan Tribune that the most recent boycott decision was taken by the chapters of Khartoum and Kassala states.

He stressed that most of the nominees were not consulted before submitting their names to the electoral body, recalling the case of a DUP member who was surprised to see his name among the nominees in Barakat constituency in the Jezira state without his knowledge.

On Thursday, six DUP nominees in the Northern state withdrew their candidacies, few days before deadline to submit nomination papers.

Sir el-Khatim said the strong stances of the nominees assert a widespread rejection for the “play which is intended to legalize elections”, adding that this position is consistent with the recent decision of the DUP leadership bureau to boycott the elections.

Last week, the DUP leadership bureau decided to send a delegation to meet with al-Mirghani at his residence in London and formally inform him of its decision to boycott the upcoming elections.

Sir el-Khatim further warned that any statements made by persons other than the party leader or his office or the spokesperson do not reflect the DUP’s positions.

He pointed that statements made by the party member Mohamed al-Muatassim Hakim in which he said that the DUP leader decided to join the elections are “not true at all”, stressing that al-Mirghani has not issued any statement to that effect.

The deputy spokesperson underscored that al-Mirghani continues to adhere to his initiative for achieving national consensus and his previously declared position regarding elections.

Earlier this month, the cabinet affairs minister Ahmed Sa’ad Omer, who is a DUP official, said that al-Mirghani gave his blessings for president Omer Hassan al-Bashir’s candidacy for the presidency.

The DUP left opposition ranks and joined the “broad-base” government of the National Congress Party (NCP) in December 2011, citing the “need to save the country” in the words of al-Mirghani himself.

The decision of one of Sudan’s biggest opposition parties to join the government has created a great deal of internal dissent that saw many members quitting in protest. The party received three ministries in the federal cabinet.

Major opposition parties such as the National Umma Party (NUP) and the Popular Congress Party (PCP) said they will not participate in the elections asserting that NCP holds absolute control over power and refuses to make any compromise to end the civil war and allow public liberties.

(ST)

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