Omar Al Bashir, Field Marshall of the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF). In January 2010, he issued a decree relieving himself from the position of SAF general commander in a procedural step required in order for him to run in the 2010 presidential elections as nominee of the ruling National Congress Party. (archive photo)
The National Elections Commission (NEC) received on Sunday President Omar Al Bashir's application to run for the presidential elections scheduled for April. The Darfur Displaced and Refugees Association called the president’s candidacy a “humiliation to all Sudanese, and particular his victims in Darfur, the Nuba Mountains, and Blue Nile state”. The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) announced its participation in the elections, and support for Al Bashir’s candidacy last week. A number of DUP leaders disagree.
Member of the NEC Electoral Registration and Technical Committee, Police Lt. Gen. El Hadi Mohamed Ahmed affirmed the receipt of Al Bashir’s candidacy on Sunday. He said that the period for receiving the applications for the presidency, the parliament, and the states’ legislative councils will continue up to 17 January.
Next to Al Bashir, Dr Mohamed Abbas El Saraj submitted his application as independent candidate for the presidential elections, as well as two women. Mahasin Abdelrahman El Tazi also applied as an independent candidate, while Dr Fatima Abdelmahmoud was nominated by the Sudanese Socialist Democratic Federation.
The Darfur Displaced and Refugees Association reacted to the registration of President Al Bashir by saying that he should be arrested instead, to be brought to trial at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague.
Eisa Ibrahim El Haj, one of the leaders of the Association called the candidacy of the incumbent president a “humiliation to all Sudanese, and particular his victims in Darfur, the Nuba Mountains, and Blue Nile state”.
He urged the UN Security Council to “act to protect the civilians in the war-torn regions, and arrest Al Bashir and the rest of the suspects, and bring them to justice”.
“Before talking about these elections, of which the outcome is already known, we need peace, security, and the safe return of all the displaced people to their homelands,” he stressed.
The DUP, headed by Sheikh Mohamed Osman El Mirghani, last week officially announced its party's participation in the April general elections. The party refrained from nominating its leader for the presidency, stating that it backs Al Bashir’s candidacy.
The DUP official in charge of the states, Mohamed El Mutasim Hakim, said that the only way to resolve the country’s problems is a broad national reconciliation.
The decision by the DUP leadership to participate in the upcoming polls has not met the approval of a number of party cadres. Sudan Tribune reported yesterday that a number of “dissidents” met on Saturday at the home of Sheikh Hassan Abu Sabeeb in Omdurman.
Declaring the formation of the “DUP Movement of Masses and Sectors”, the dissident faction declared a complete boycott of the elections, withdrawal of their participation in the government, and the composition of a transitional politburo.