Speculations about ministerial reshuffle in Sudan

Sudan Tribune
Fecha de publicación: 
19 Mayo 2013

Different sources have expected a large ministerial reshuffle in Khartoum, saying that the first vice-president Ali Osman Taha might be relieved from his position.

A presidential source told Sudan Tribune on Sunday that First Vice President Ali Osman Mohamed Taha is one of the most prominent figure that will quit the government in the upcoming reshuffle, adding he will dedicate his time as deputy chairman to the management of the ruling National Congress Party (NCP).

The source further revealed that defence minister Gen. Abdel-Rahim Hussein, will also be among those who will lose their ministerial portfolios.

Abdel Rahim recently disclosed to several journalists in Khartoum that he demanded to be relieved from his position for health reasons. The minister suffers herniated disc in his back.

Gen. Bakri Hassan Saleh, minister of the presidential affairs, is among the most prominent candidates to succeed him. Saleh is appreciated from the army and at different times the military preferred to speak with him about the problems they face than Hussein.

However other sources ruled out to appoint him at this position because he holds a prominent position in the Islamist Movement. In the past also, some sources speculated that Bashir was preparing him for the presidency of the country.

Finance minister Ali Mahmoud is also cited among those who will be removed in the expected ministerial reshuffle.

Also, the presidential assistant Jaffar Al-Mirghani would be appointed minister at an important portfolio and quit his current post.

The source stressed that the reshuffle will be comprehensive and touch most of the cabinet members.

The new cabinet was scheduled to be announced before the end of April but the attacks of the rebel groups in Kordofan region forced the presidency to defer it, it was learnt.

It was also reported that presidential assistant and NCP deputy chairman Nafie Ali Nafie is strongly opposed to the ministerial reshuffle because he says the moment is not opportune to make such important changes.

He also argues that the reshuffle may create a vacuum in the executive body.

But sources said that Nafie is probably fearing that Ali Osman may delimit his role in the leadership of the ruling party.

Currently, Omer Al-Bashir is the leader of the ruling party, Ali Osman is the NCP deputy chairman for executive affairs and Nafie is the deputy chairman for the party’s affairs .

Nafie led a wing within the NCP against the Comprehensive Peace Agreement negotiated by Ali Osman Taha with the late SPLM leader John Garang and signed in January 2005.

Following Garang death, he worked to weaken and marginalise Taha who since lost his influential role in the government.

Omer Al-Bashir at different times announced that he would not seek to remain in power after the end of his current term in 2015, and asked the party to chose a new candidate to replace him.

Observers say if Taha takes the control of the party this may give him the necessary means to prepare for his election in 2015.