Home | News    Wednesday 15 October 2014

Nothing prevents Sudan’s Bashir from seeking re-election: Ghandour

October 14, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – Sudan’s ruling National Congress (NCP) reaffirmed that nothing prevents president Omer al-Bashir from seeking re-election in the next presidential race.

JPEG - 23.8 kb
NCP deputy chairman Ibrahim Ghandour speaks in a press conference held in Khartoum on 14 October 2014 (ST)

In a press conference held on Tuesday, presidential assistant and NCP deputy chairman Ibrahim Ghandour briefed reporters about the party’s preparations for the fourth national convention, which will begin on 23 October.

Ghandour said the party would select five people adding that the only one name will be picked and tabled at the General Convention for endorsement. In addition, he ruled out any possible divergence or rift over his choice.

“We are ready for anyone who has a talk inconsistent with the constitution and the possibility of Bashir’s nomination [by the party],” he added.

Former presidential aide Nafie Ali Nafie Sunday admitted the existence of a trend within the ruling party opposed to the Bashir’s nomination for 2015 election. But he asserted that the majority within the NCP supports the current president.

Al-Bashir since last year says he has no intention to run for a new term, stressing on the need to inject fresh blood in the party, but he has left the door open adding that the matter will be decided by the Shura Council and the party’s general convention.

On the other hand, Ghandour reiterated their rejection to the demands of the opposition and rebel forces to postpone the election and to form an interim cabinet to implement the outcome of the national dialogue.

He said that no one can guarantee an end of the transitional period, pointing that some ask to extend it for 10 years.

“We will not take the risk to leave the legitimacy of the government hanging in the hands of the armed movements,” he said.

TALKS WITH SPLM-N REBELS

On Tuesday. the presidential assistant received the head of East Africa division in the Germany foreign ministry, Marian Schuegraf, who briefed him about a workshop her government organised earlier this month for the rebel groups.

In statements released by the official agency SUNA, Gandour renewed his government’s commitment to engage talks with the rebel SPLM-N and to include all the opposition forces in the national dialogue.

In his press conference, he indicated the mediation did not yet determine a date for the talks, adding their readiness for a “comprehensive ceasefire agreement” followed by security arrangements and the implementation of the tripartite humanitarian agreement.

He further pointed that the discussions with the rebels of South Kordofan and Blue Nile states should not exceed three months, after what the SPLM-N joins the national dialogue process.

The government’s top negotiator underscored they refuse the SPLM-N calls for a renewable six-month cessation of hostilities.

As well, he said the deal that the national dialogue subcommittee for external relations signed with the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) and the rebel Sudanese Revolutionary Forces (SRF) is not yet endorsed by the political forces of the national dialogue.

He added the agreement on the national dialogue and constitutional process will be examined by the general assembly of the national dialogue, which will convene next Sunday in a meeting chaired by president Omer al-Bashir.

SUDAN AND GULF COUNTRIES

Ghandour also commented on a document leaked recently including the minutes of a Joint Military and Security Committee meeting. He accused internal and external circles of seeking to undermine Sudan relations with the Gulf countries.

“Always, there are some circles seeking to harm our relations with the Gulf States,” he said, adding that Sudan will not be part of any regional or international alliance, but work to develop bilateral ties with all the countries.

He said that the leaked document aims to undermine Sudan’s relations with the Saudi Arabia and Iran.

The presidential assistant added they will soon release documents to counter what was published by US expert on Sudan issues Eric Reeves in September.

“The leak of documents is a war, if began, will be lost by those who started it,” he said.

(ST)