Sudanese Professionals Association, the lead group for protests in the country have rejected the military’s move to employ Islamic law as the basis for a new constitution.
Sudan’s Transitional Military Council had earlier this week made the proposal amid the country’s ongoing political transition. The SPA were not at the said meeting where the proposal was made.
Amged Farid, spokesman for SPA told the Middle East Eye news portal that the move was with a motive to “blackmail” opposition activists.
Issues like Sharia or the language of the state, those are ideological weapons the former regime kept using to divide the people on the issue of mobilisation, between Muslims and non-Muslims, Arabs and non-Arabs. We are not willing to stand for this game.
“The insertion of Islamic and Sharia issues into this situation is an attempt to practice political blackmail,” Farid said.
In addition to the efforts to inscribe Islamic law in the constitution, the army also want Arabic explicitly listed as the country’s official language.
“We are discussing transitional arrangements, transitional institutions. This is the subject, not Sharia,” Khaled Omar Youssef, a protest leader with the opposition Sudanese Congress Party, told reporters.
“Issues like Sharia or the language of the state, those are ideological weapons the former regime kept using to divide the people on the issue of mobilisation, between Muslims and non-Muslims, Arabs and non-Arabs. We are not willing to stand for this game,” he said.
For their part, the TMC also rejected earlier proposals made by protest and opposition leaders on the structure of a transitional civilian and military government after the fall of Omar al-Bashir.
Bashir was forced out in a military coup on 11 April after weeks of protests across the country demanding his resignation. he is currently in detention and under investigations.
Protests continue with hundreds still staging a sit-in in front of the army headquarters in the capital Khartoum. They insist that till the the TMC hand over power to a civilian-led transition, they are not leaving.