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New postponement to announce the formation of the Sudanese government

UNITED STATES, WASHINGTON (OBSERVATORY) — The announcement of Sudan’s first cabinet post-Omar al-Bashir has been postponed again as talks continue on ministers who are supposed to manage the country’s problems during a transition to civilian rule.

Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdouk, a former economist at the United Nations, was due to announce on Wednesday the names of the key ministers in his government, according to the road map announced.

However, he is still in talks to select his cabinet, causing the first meeting between the government and the JMC, which runs the transitional period scheduled for Sunday, to be disrupted.

The prime minister, chosen by the Sovereign Council on August 21 and sworn in as prime minister, received the list of names proposed by the forces of freedom and change on Tuesday and has met with candidates since that day.

The leader of the protest movement Amjad Farid told AFP that “the forces of freedom and change submitted a list of candidates late to the Prime Minister, which led to the delay in the formation of the government.”

The other leader Ibrahim al-Amin stressed that the delay “responsibility of the forces of freedom and change in full” because of “differences” in the protest movement over the candidates.

On Sunday, the protest movement said it had “in-depth and constructive discussions” with Hamdok on Saturday over candidates for the transitional government.

Members of the Sovereign Council, a joint civilian military council, were sworn in on August 21. The Sovereign Council is commanded by a military, and its members are divided between six civilians and five soldiers, and is supposed to rule for more than three years in a transition period that is supposed to lead to an elected civilian authority.

The composition of the Council came under a timetable agreed by the parties to the historic agreement signed between the Military Council and the protest movement on 17 August.

The agreement provides for the formation of a legislative council within 90 days of signing the agreement.

The Legislative Council, which will consist of a maximum of 300 members, will be formed by 40% of women. The forces of freedom and change will make up 67% of parliament, while the rest will go to other parties, provided they are not linked in any way to former President Bashir.

– “negative effect” –

Under the agreement, the government is supposed to consist of at least 20 members chosen by Hamdok, with the exception of the interior and defense ministers to be appointed by the military in the Sovereign Council.

Al-Amin said that delaying the government’s announcement would “certainly have a negative impact” on slowing the transition.

This is not the first dilemma facing the transition after decades of authoritarian rule in Sudan.

The announcement of the members of the Sovereign Council was delayed by two days due to differences in the protest movement camp.

Last week, Hamdok, who worked for international and regional organizations and served as Deputy Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa in Addis Ababa, confirmed that he had received 49 candidates for 14 ministerial posts.

A source close to the prime minister told AFP on Sunday that “discussions are underway for the final list.”

Hamdouk said earlier that he would choose technocrats ministers based on “competence” to lead Sudan to face the major challenges, including ending internal conflicts.

Armed movements in marginalized areas, including Darfur, South Kordofan and Blue Nile, have waged years of war against government forces.

The power-sharing agreement provided for an end to these conflicts.

On Saturday, four rebel movements in Darfur said they would “negotiate with the transitional authorities with a unified vision” without giving details.

The Hamdouk government is expected to fight rampant corruption as well as to dismantle the deep-rooted Islamist movement during Bashir’s 30-year rule.

Bashir, 75, is being held in Kober prison in Khartoum shortly after his ouster.

On Saturday, a court in Khartoum charged him with illegal possession of foreign money.

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