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Bashir blames South Darfur unrest on ex-governor

February 3, 2012 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudanese President Omer Al-Bashir has castigated the ex-governor of South Darfur State against the background of recent violent events that followed the decision to replace him.

FILE - Sudan President Omer Al-Bashir (GETTY)

South Darfur State last month witnessed a wave of mass protest and concomitant vandalism after the state’s newly appointed governor, Hamad Isma’il, arrived to assume the duties of his predecessor Abdel Hamid Musa Kasha.

Kasha, an elected governor, was relieved from his position as part of Al-Bashir’s 10 January decrees which increased the number of states in Sudan’s western region from three to five and appointed new governors.

Al-Bashir’s decrees were part of the Doha Peace Agreement signed between the government and one of Darfur rebel groups in a bid to end the nine-year-old conflict in the region.

The violence has killed at least three people and saw offices of the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) in the state’s capital Nyala being looted and destroyed.

A number of NCP officials who commented on the events sought to absolve Kasha of links to the violence in an attempt to deny the existence of rifts within the NCP base in the state.

But Al-Bashir, in a two-hour interview with the Blue Nile TV on Friday, revealed that Kasha and his stalwarts in the state were implicated in the unrest.

Al-Bashir accused the ex-governor of incompetency, saying he had appointed too many people to constitutional positions, over 70 officials, thus creating a base of supporters who were responsible for igniting the violence.

The NCP chairman, who declared that the events in Nyala have ended completely, also accused members of Darfur rebel groups and some Shamasa, a name for street children in Sudan, of participating in the violence.

(ST)