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Sudan Tribune

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NUP deputy leader proposes transitional caretaker government in Sudan

Mariam al-Mahdi

Mariam al-Mahdi

March 10, 2023 (KHARTOUM) – Mariam al-Mahdi, deputy head of the National Umma Party, proposed the formation of a caretaker government until an agreement is reached on the formation of a civilian government.

In statements to Al Jazeera TV on Thursday, Mariam pointed to the slow political process as a result of the state of the ongoing stalemate in the country, international isolation, insecurity and deteriorating economic conditions saying that this situation requires finding temporary solutions until these conditions are addressed.

“For example, there is a proposal, which we have not yet collectively discussed (in the Forces for Freedom and Change), to form a caretaker government (…) so that will give us some time to agree,” she said.

The UNP deputy head further stressed the need to reach an agreement between civil forces to end the current political crisis, referring to making concessions to the democratic bloc, which demands the inclusion of all its components in the next government.

“Broadening participation has become an important and necessary issue. We cannot allow something so simple to complicate things so seriously and so severely,” she said.

During the long TV interview, the former foreign minister disclosed that the party’s political bureau is mulling over a report prepared by one of the committees calling to involve all the political forces in the transitional period.

“The Policy Committee clearly believes that there is a need for the participation or the signing (of the final political agreement) of all the political forces, except the (banned) National Congress Party and its tributaries. This is something we are discussing”

Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, Head of the Sovereign Council and commander-in-chief of the Sudanese army calls to open the framework agreement for all the political forces except the party of the former regime.

Al-Mahdi’s proposal remains, however, far away from the position adopted by the coalition of the Forces for Freedom and Changes (FFC), which calls to limit the participation in the transitional government to the forces of the revolution.

They say this is the only way to ensure the implementation of the slogans of the December revolution and the implementation of needed reforms to lay the foundations for the establishment of a democratic system in the country.

Lukewarm reactions

The proposal of the NUP senior official was not supported by the FFC or the political signatories of the framework agreement.

The political Secretary of the Popular Congress Party (PCP), Kamal Omer, in statements to Sudan Tribune, on Friday, rejected the proposal to form a caretaker government.

A caretaker government means “sharing power with the military,” Omer said.

“The position of the signatories of the framework agreement is clear: the establishment of a civil authority based on the draft transitional constitution and the political declaration. Therefore the proposal of the caretaker government does not represent us,” he added.

Shihab al-Din Ibrahim, a spokesman for the FFC stated they would not discuss the formation of any government before completing the workshops on the five sticky issues.

He underscored that any postponement of these issues would not be in the interest of the political process.

Other FFC leaders declined to comment on the proposal.