Sudan Armed Forces ‘won’t protect a constitution signed by 10 men’
KADUGLI / KHARTOUM –
Member of the Sovereignty Council, Lt Gen Shamseldin Kabbashi, says that the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) will not proceed with the Framework Agreement unless it is signed by a sufficient number of political parties and groups.
In a public address attended by Radio Dabanga on Sunday, he said “we will not protect a constitution signed by 10 men.”
The speech was made during his visit to Kadugli, capital of South Kordofan. He said that the number of signatories of the Framework Agreement is not sufficient to solve the political crisis in the country, and stressed that the military cannot protect any constitution that is not in agreement with it.
He also repeated the junta’s commitment to leave the political process after a final agreement is signed and a new civilian government is formed. “Certain circumstances require the armed forces to be a party to the current dialogue” according to the lieutenant general.
He called on the signatories of the Framework Agreement “to open their hearts and accept others” and added, “we refuse to let anyone hold up a red pen and determine who is allowed to come or not.” He stressed that all citizens are equal in politics.
Siddig Tawir, prominent member of the Socialist Arab Ba’ath Party and member of the Sovereignty Council during the government of PM Abdallah Hamdok (2019-2021), told Radio Dabanga that the Framework Agreement is “unfortunately confined to certain groups within the Forces for Freedom and Change-Central Council (FFC-CC) and does not include resistance committees, families of protesters killed, and other revolutionary groups”.
The FFC-CC alliance that is coordinating the current political process maintains that only certain parties are entitled to sign the Framework Agreement. It refuses to “flood the political process” with parties that are not interested in democracy, such as the FFC-Democratic Block.
He described Kabbashi’s speech in Kadugli as “an expression of his anti-democratic behaviour”, similar to El Burhan’s “repeated statements that aim to keep the army in an independent position, away from any civilian authority.”
According to Tawir, El Burhan and his colleagues are “hostile to the democratic transition and freedoms. The army generals will continue to put obstacles in the way to any civil democratic transition.”
Political scientist Salah El Doma called Kabbashi’s speech “a whirlwind in a cup.” Kabbashi’s statements are an attempt to obtain some commitments from the European and American international delegations that will visit Sudan soon, he said.
He told Radio Dabanga that “there is no specific quorum that must be met in order for the number of signatures on the Framework Agreement to be sufficient.”
Regarding South Kordofan, Kabbashi called on the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North under the leadership of Abdelaziz El Hilu (SPLM-N El Hilu) to sign an agreement to stop hostilities in order to reach social peace in South Kordofan.
He said that the government provided “a gesture of love” by allowing traffic to and from areas controlled by the SPLM-N El Hilu to deliver relief, referring to the government’s commitment to a cease-fire in the region.
Kabbashi, originally from the area of Delling, acknowledged the shortcomings of the government of South Kordofan and the security forces. Kabbashi said in his speech at the Kadugli Stadium that “security has failed in the state. Everyone carries a gun and takes justice into their own hands”.