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Sudan’s ruling party postpones its general conference

Delegates attend the general conference of the ruling National Congress Party in Khartoum October 23, 2014 (Photo Reuters)
March 30, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - The parliament of Sudan’s ruling National Congress Party (NCP), the Shura Council, has postponed the party’s general conference which was supposed to be held next April.

For the first time since the NCP establishment in 1998, Saturday’s meeting of the Shura (consultative) Council was held without President Omer al-Bashir who abandoned the party’s leadership to Ahmed Haroun.

The General Conference, which was adjourned without assigning a day for a future meeting, was expected to determine the party’s candidate for 2020 elections.

On February 22, Bashir declared the state of emergency and said he would be at the same distance from all the political forces as the leader of the whole nation. Also, he directed the parliament to postpone consideration of constitutional amendments to allow him to run for president again.

The rapporteur of the Shura Council Mohamed al-Hassan al-Amin told reporters following the meeting that the postponement of the General Conference was due to the political crisis Sudan is experiencing nowadays.

"The postponement was decided after considering the circumstances in which the country and the party are placed. Also, it aimed at creating suitable conditions for dialogue on the vision of the rule of the country with the various political forces, including the opposition," al-Amin said.

Recently, there were unconfirmed reports that al-Bashir hopes a two-year ultimate extension of his current mandate during which he would rule the country chairing a collective presidency including the opposition before to organise new elections.

According to al-Amin, the council discussed a draft "conceptual framework" which includes a vision for the future of the party, including changing its name and reforming it, he said.

Further, he said the Shura Council called for lifting the state of emergency if the reasons for its imposition are fulfilled.

The Sudanese Islamists who have ruled the country for 30 years following a coup d’état in June 1989, are facing peaceful protests that calling for regime change in Sudan since December 2018.