Opposition Calls for Overthrowing Sudan's Arab Minority Government

The Sudanese opposition Popular Congress Party (PCP) led by the veteran Islamist Hassan Al-Turabi has stepped up anti-government rhetoric, accusing Khartoum of committing “ethnic cleansing” in Blue Nile and calling for its ouster.

Addressing a gathering of pro-opposition supporters on Sunday, the PCP’s political secretary Kamala Omer accused the government of carrying out “ethnic cleansing” in the Blue Nile State.

The PCP official further accused the government of “violating the constitution, betrayal and working to fragment the country.”

Blue Nile state, which borders the Republic of South Sudan, last week descended into clashes between Sudan’s army and forces of the armed opposition Sudan People’s Liberation Movement North (SPLM-N) led by the state’s governor Malik Aggar.

Sudan accuses South Sudan of supporting the SPLM-N rebels in Blue Nile and South Kordofan State, which has been racked by similar fighting since June.

Following the outbreak of Blue Nile’s unrest, Sudanese president Al-Bashir declared a state of emergency and sacked Aggar, appointing a military ruler in his place.

Al-Turabi’s party, which is a splinter faction of the ruling National Congress Party (NCP), refuses to engage in dialogue and continues to call for regime change.

Other opposition groups, mainly the National Umma Party of former prime minister Al-Sadiq al-Mahdi and the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) of Mohamed Osman Al-Mirghani, opted for dialogue with the NCP, giving rise to speculations that the two parties will feature in the new NCP government.

Meanwhile, the NCP’s official spokesman and media secretary Ibrahim Gandur on Sunday said that the committee tasked to propose a new government’s makeup has finished its work and submitted its report to the NCP’s chairman and the country’s president Al-Bashir.

Gandur, speaking to Sudan’s official news agency SUNA, said that the next government would include all the parties which agree with his party on the proposed program.

The NCP official declined to divulge which parties would be included but he insisted that the next government would be geared towards implementing programs rather than accommodating political rivalries.

“We are not talking about a party-based government we are talking about a government based on a program,” he added.

According to Sudan Tribune’s sources, the anticipated government will be composed of only 15 ministers in contrast with the current 32 ministers.