(By Radio Dabanga)
The political bureau of the SPLM will decide on Wednesday (31 March) about proceeding with the elections in Sudan scheduled for 11 April. The political bureau is inclined to suggest to the NCP to postpone the elections. If the NCP does not agree, the SPLM will continue only with elections in Southern Sudan, Abyei and Blue Nile, boycotting them elsewhere.
It will also join the opposition in proving that the Northern elections and the presidential elections – if not postponed — will not be free and fair. So says the Minister of Presidential Affairs in South Sudan, Luka Biong Deng, in an interview with Radio Dabanga. The decision of the SPLM will be key for the elections to move forward. NCP leader and President Omar al Bashir and SPLM leader Salva Kiir canceled today their upcoming meeting adding to the growing tension in the country. Reliable sources told Radio Dabanga that the threats uttered by President Omar Al Bashir to postpone the referendum for self-determination of the South had infuriated the entire top leadership of the SPLM. Speaking to Radio Dabanga, SPLM Minister of Presidential Affairs Luka Biong said that President Omar al Bashir completely overstepped his lines of duty by threatening the South with postponement of the elections: “There is no connection between the elections and the referendum. According to the CPA, the president is not in charge of the referendum, but it is the Referendum Commission”.
SPLM candidate beaten up in North Darfur
A local candidate for the State Legislative Assembly in North Darfur was beaten up during a public meeting in Kalla in Northern Darfur. The SPLM candidate, Hamza Mohammed Abdel Rasoul, had started speaking on Monday when some armed and uniformed men entered the meeting place using four pickup trucks. They started to beat him and seven of his team, he told Radio Dabanga. The men were apparently from the Border Guards, Hamza explained. He was surprised by the action, since the SPLM had received official permission for the rally. But the guards told them that the SPLM is not allowed to campaign in the specific area of Kalla, which is not far from Seraf Umra.