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Sudan’s Bashir Wins Party Backing For Vote, Set To Extend 25 year Rule

Sudan’s ruling party has given final approval to President Omar Hassan al-Bashir as its candidate in next year’s presidential vote, sealing his bid to extend his rule after 25 years in power, reports Reuters News Agency.

Wanted on charges of genocide and war crimes by the International Criminal Court, Bashir has reason to fear his future should he leave office as he would have to entrust his fate to a successor. He can now cast those fears aside.

National Congress Party leaders endorsed Bashir by a 94 percent margin at a party conference late on Saturday. Senior leaders had already eliminated four rival party candidates in an earlier vote last week.

The formal endorsement confirmed what many in Sudan had expected: Bashir would break his promise to step down and not run for another term in April 2015 polls.

Though the 70-year-old Bashir pledged in January to redraw the constitution, bring opposition parties into government, and launch a national dialogue, no visible progress has been made.

The few active opposition movements in Sudan are already losing hope of any change in the political climate and some have recently announced their plan to boycott the presidential vote.

Dire economic conditions since the secession of the oil-rich southern half of the country in 2011 — including inflation that currently hovers around 40 percent — anger struggling citizens.

However, some Sudanese feel they cannot trust alternatives to Bashir, who has proven himself a political survivor, fighting off coup attempts, civil wars, and international isolation.

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