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Sudanese security bans workshop on election law

July 14, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) Saturday has refused to allow the Reform Now Movement (RNM) to hold a workshop to discuss the 2018 election law.

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Sudanese electoral workers begin the process of counting votes for the presidential and legislative elections in Khartoum on 17 April 2015 (Photo: AP/Abd Raouf)

In a press release seen by Sudan Tribune on Saturday, RNM political secretary Khalid Nouri said they submitted a written request to the NISS three days ago to get a permit to hold a workshop on the general election law.

He pointed out that the NISS refrained from issuing permission without giving any reasons.

“Whereas the ruling National Congress Party claims seeking to reach consensus among the political parties on the election law, its security services continue to suppress freedoms,” said Nouri

The RNM official further described the NISS move as clear proof that the regime lacks credibility and good intentions to hold free, fair and transparent elections in 2020.

He underlined the national security services should be neutral and maintain an equal distance from all political parties as well as staying away from the political activities.

It is noteworthy that the RNM is part of the National Consensus Government (NCG) which was installed in May 2017 to implement the outcome of the national dialogue conference.

In October 2016, the political forces participating in the government-led national dialogue concluded the process by signing the National Document which includes the general features of a future constitution to be finalised by transitional institutions.

On 11 June, the Sudanese Council of Ministers approved the 2018 elections law amid objection of several political forces participating in the national dialogue.

The rebel groups and opposition parties refused to join Khartoum process as they demand the government to end the war and ensure freedoms in the country ahead of the dialogue.

Also, last May, a coalition of some opposition left parties, the National Consensus Forces (NCF), announced the boycott of the 2020 elections, saying it won’t meet with the ruling party to discuss any topic pertaining to these elections.

On the other hand, several opposition groups that are part of the opposition Sudan Call forces consider participating in the next general presidential elections in 2020 if the regime of President Omer al-Bashir provides needed guarantees for a fair election and ensures freedoms.

(ST)