A Sudanese court issued a decision on Monday, November 11th to disband former President Omar al-Bashir’s party, in response to a lawsuit filed by the nongovernmental group “Zero Corruption”.
According to the Zero Corruption organisation, the Administrative Appeals Court in Khartoum has ordered the political parties administration to start taking the necessary procedures to disband the National Congress Party (NCP), the political front for Muslim Brotherhood‘s rule in Sudan after it was proved guilty for possessing military formations, which runs against the Civil Party Act in the country.
Nader Ebeid, the head of Zero Corruption, told 7Dnews that his organisation filed a lawsuit last January against the NCP, the political organ al-Bashir used to control the country during his 30 years of autocratic rule before being ousted in April this year.
“We filed the lawsuit following a televised statement made by Sudan’s ex-Vice President Ali Osman Taha in which he revealed that the ruling party owned secret military groups that were ready to defend al-Bashir by all means in an attempt to terrorise the public protest movement that was at its zenith at that time,” Ebeid said.
He added that the court based its ruling on Article 14 of the Sudanese Party Act which prohibits the establishment of “covert or overt military cells within the party itself”, which was violated by Bashir’s party.
“Following Ali Osman Taha’s statement, we submitted a petition to the Political Parties Affairs Council calling for the dissolution of the NCP, but the way it was turned down indicated collusion,” Ebeid told 7Dnews, adding that this drove them to file a complaint to the administrative appeals court in Khartoum, which gave orders to the Parties Council to start the procedures of dissolving al-Bashir's party.
This judicial matter comes amid the Sudanese anticipation of a long-awaited decision promised by the transitional government to dissolve the NPC, and confiscate its properties in response to calls from waves of protests.
An informed source has told 7Dnews that a draft law was sent, for approval, to the legislative authority, which is composed of the Sovereign Council and the cabinet which, according to the constitutional document governing the interim period, has been granted the power to legislate until a parliament is formed.
The head of Zero Corruption added that the Appeals Court’s decision will help the transitional government to disband the NCP as it is now provided with the legal framework for any political decision in this regard.
“If the party is dissolved according to a political decision, this might be misinterpreted as an undemocratic action, but the judicial rulings are still respected by everyone,” Ebeid said.
He added that his organisation will file more lawsuits to have the possessions of Bashir’s party confiscated and its leaders held accountable for the crimes they committed.
The Muslim Brotherhood regime led by Omar al-Bashir was deposed on April 11th through a public uprising supported by the army, and thus ending three decades of human rights violations and corruptions.
In spite of the success of the revolution and the formation of the first interim government, the Sudanese people still stage sporadic protests from time to time calling for the removal of the members of the Brotherhood from the country’s institutions and bringing them to justice.
Mohanad El-Sheikh, a leader in the youth sector of the NCP, considered the legal decision as “unfair” and runs contrary to “the slogans of ‘freedom, peace and justice’ which the transitional government always chants”.
He reiterated that they will not respond to any of these decisions and will continue to practice their “peaceful” political activity.
“We are not seeking to turn to power, we’ve been in office for 30 years and we’re satisfied with what we’ve achieved,” El-Sheikh told 7Dnews. “But we stick to our right to practice our peaceful, political role in building Sudan and achieving peace and stability.”
“What they are plotting against us is absolutely unfair, for all other parties are carrying out their political roles and none of them has been dissolved,” he said, adding that this contradicts the democratic approach which is dominant now.
Meanwhile, political analyst Amr Shaaban hailed the procedures toward disbanding the former ruling party, considering it a “new victory” for the public uprising which cost the lives of many Sudanese protestors.
“Al-Bashir’s party has been carrying out the most heinous violations against the Sudanese people for 3 decades,” Shaaban told 7Dnews. “The decision to dismantle it is a positive step and a popular demand, although it is overdue.”
He added that dissolving it does not contradict the principals of freedom and justice which the transitional government adopts. “Revolutions by nature are based on ending the dominance of a particular group, and establishing a pluralistic democratic alternative that meets the aspirations of the majority of the nation.”
“The NCP poses a threat to the stability of Sudan and the democratic transition of power, and we must isolate it politically, and in some cases, socially as well,” Shaaban added.