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Disputes Erupt over Formation of Partnership Council to Steer Sudan Transition

Disputes Erupt over Formation of Partnership Council to Steer Sudan Transition

Saturday, 5 December, 2020 - 07:00
Sudan’s Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok (L) and Sovereign Council chief General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan attend the opening session of an economic conference in the capital Khartoum, September 26. (AFP)

A decree by the Sudanese Sovereign Council to appoint a “council of partners for the transition” has prompted a wave of uproar among members of the body and its opponents.

Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok warned that he may quit the Sovereign Council, saying that the decree went against the agreement on the structure of the partners body and its privileges.

Information minister and government spokesman Faisal Mohammed Saleh told Asharq Al-Awsat on Friday that the prime minister was “surprised” by the decree.

Sovereign Council Chairman, General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan had on Thursday issued a decree to form the 29-member Transitional Partners Council. It will be tasked with managing the transitional period, serving the country’s higher national interests and resolving disputes among various parties.

Saleh said, however, that those involved had agreed to form a “political consultative council” that brings together various political partners to resolve potential disputes. This council would not become involved in sovereign, executive and legislative authorities.

The agreement had called for the inclusion of five officers in the partners council, not six, he added.

The decree is “unsatisfactory, neither in its structure, nor in its jurisdiction,” he went on to say. “This is not what we agreed on.”

The agreement was for the council to be formed of peace partners, he revealed. The Forces for Freedom and Change and officers in the Sovereign Council used to hold talks in their capacity as signatories of the “constitutional document” and therefore, the partners of peace must be part of these talks.

Moreover, Saleh remarked that the fact that the decree was issued by the Sovereign Council makes it seem that it was acting as a “substitute to the legislative council.”

“This is unacceptable to any party. The council must be restructure and its duties amended so that it does not have power over either the legislative or executive authorities,” he demanded.

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