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President Bashir dissolves Sudanese government

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March 2, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir Thursday has dissolved his government and tasked the ministers to continue with their existing responsibilities until the formation of the National Consensus Government.

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Sudanese vice-president Bakri Hassan Saleh gives a press conference in Khartoum on August 3, 2015 (Photo AFP/Ashraf Shazly)

The move follows the appointment of Bakri Hassan Saleh as the first prime minister since President al-Bashir took power in 1989, in implementation of the outcome of the national dialogue conference.

Sudanese Information Minister and Government Spokesperson Ahmed Balal Osman Thursday told reporters the President issued two decrees related to the cabinet’s dissolution and the continuation of existing ministers until a new one has been formed.

He further added that al-Bashir and Saleh will engage consultations with the political parties before to announce the new government and described the bargaining as a "complex process".

He added the number of ministries and the share of every party are not yet fixed but the standards of choice have been set up including the political forces participating in the government, and qualifications of ministers who will be picked for the federal and regional levels.

"Forming a government will take time," Osman said.

The new prime minister, however, shared the weekly meeting of the cabinet. He praised the efforts exerted by the acting ministers during the past period and vowed to form the new government during the upcoming days.

Before to chair the cabinet’s meeting, Saleh sworn in at the presidential palace in Khartoum.

The swearing-in ceremony before President Omer al-Bashir was attended by the Chief Justice Ahmed Haidar Dafa’a Allah and Presidential Affairs Minister Fadul Abdallah.

In a press statement after the ceremony, the Prime Minister of the National Consensus Government expressed his utmost appreciation for the confidence placed in him by the President.

He further expressed hope to carry out responsibilities guided by the outcome of the national dialogue and to form an inclusive government including all the forces that participated in the process and to achieve peace, stability and to reduce poverty.

Saleh is the only military officer of the Revolutionary Command Council of 1989 coup d’état to remain beside al-Bashir during his 28-year-rule.

His choice, for many, indicates that the army remains more than ever the main basis of the regime. Saleh is the interlocutor at the Sudanese presidency of the general staff. He defended their points of view and privileges during the different crises.

Following Saleh’s choice for the new post by the ruling National Congress Party leadership body, President al-Bashir stated that his old friend was endorsed by all the political forces involved in the dialogue process.

Also, he said that the position of the second vice-president will be maintained in line with the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur which is now part of the constitution.

The president further emphasised that the purpose of all the constitutional reforms, including the post of prime minister, is to undertake the needed reforms during the transitional period and to prepare a permanent constitution.

He pointed that the National Document encompassing the resolutions of the dialogue conference, saying it would remain open for the holdout groups and would be the foundation of the future constitution.

"The journey continues and anyone can ride the train without tickets and from any station," he said in a message to the opposition groups that refuse to acknowledge the internal process and its outcome.

The opposition Sudan Call forces and the Future Forces of Change refuse to join the government-led national dialogue process and call to implement the confidence-building measures included in the Roadmap Agreement brokered by the African Union mediation team.

(ST)

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