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Sudan’s al-Bashir appoints Defence Minister as First Vice-President

President al-Bashir with Defence Minister Awad Ibn Ouf on 13 September 2015 (File Photo)
February 23, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir has issued a decree replacing his First Vice-President, Bakri Hassan Salih, with the Defence Minister Awad Ibn Ouf.

The Sudanese presidency on Saturday said the newly appointed First Vice-President would also maintain his position as defence minister.

Also, the Sudanese president issued a decree appointing the former governor of Gezira State Mohamed Tahir Eila as Prime Minister.

A leading figure at the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) who spoke to Sudan Tribune on the condition of anonymity described the sacking of Salih as “significant decision”.

It is noteworthy that Salih, al-Bashir’s long-time confidante, was the only remaining member of the military council that took over in the coup that brought al-Bashir to power in June 1989.

He held a number of positions during his 30-year career in the regime including the director of security and intelligence, minister of interior, minister of defence, minister of the presidency and Prime Minister.

Also, last week Salih was removed from his position as deputy secretary general of the Islamic Movement, a post that he held since 2012.

On Friday, al-Bashir declared a one-year state of emergency, ordered the parliament to postpone a constitutional reform to allow him to run for another term, and decided to dismiss the national government and the dissolution of state governments.

He kept six federal ministers only and appointed 18 militaries as governors of the Sudanese states.

The announced decisions come as recognition by President al-Bashir of the amplitude of the two-month political crisis in Sudan and brutal repression of protests where over 30 people have been killed according to the government.

(ST)