Sudan Elections 2015

In April 2015, 13.6 million eligible voters were called for the second elections in the country since 1989 to elect the new president, members of the national parliament and members of the state parliaments. The scheduling of the elections was heavily criticized by the opposition parties, as elections could not be held in the domestic political situation at the time, with continued arrests of politicians and strong press censorship, and the state of the “national dialogue” between the parties initiated by former President al-Bashir Would not allow setting an election date. Especially in the run-up to the elections, the Sudanese secret service NISS had increased the restrictions on freedom of the press, especially in the print media.

The political environment in which the elections took place was also sharply criticized by the EU, which was joined by Norway, Great Britain and the USA, who were involved in the Sudanese peace process as “troika” after the elections.

After the Popular Congress Party (PCP), led by Hassan al-Turabi, had already announced the boycott of the elections in October 2014, further calls to boycott the elections were made before the election date started, among other things by an opposition alliance.

According to computergees, the date of the elections was originally scheduled for April 2nd, but these have been postponed to April 12th to 15th. The possibility of voting is by the National Election Commission (NEC then) to another day has been extended. The reason for the election extension was logistical problems, but it is considered certain that the extremely low voter turnout, which was already established at the beginning of the elections, was the decisive factor.

After the elections were over, the National Electoral Commission stated that the turnout was 46.4%. This value is seen as embellished, and the election observers of the African Union confirm in their final report on the elections a very low frequency of polling stations and estimate that no more than 30-35% of the registered voters cast their votes.

After the closing of the domestic polling stations, Sudan allowed the Sudanese living in the diaspora to vote for three days in the seven countries that have the largest number of Sudanese abroad. Here, too, only a very low level of willingness to vote was observed.

Sudan Elections 2015

Since all serious candidates and opposition parties boycotted the election, the re-election of Omar al-Bashir in the presidential elections, with 14 largely unknown opposing candidates, was a purely formality. The same applied to the parliamentary elections, where the ruling NCP achieved a majority with 44 participating parties in the run-up to the elections. Of the established parties, only the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) took part in the elections.

In some parts of the troubled provinces of Darfur, Blue Nile and South Kordofan, the elections could not be held because, among other things, election papers were stolen from rebel groups.

The results of the elections were announced on April 27 by the National Electoral Commission (NEC). After that, President Omar al-Bashir, who has been in office since 1989, was victorious with 94.05% of the votes cast. The second-placed candidate received 1.43%.

As expected, the ruling NCP in al-Bashir was also able to defend its majority in the elections to the National Assembly, winning 323 of the 426 seats. Independent candidates are among the winners of the parliamentary elections because of the electoral boycott of the main opposition parties, such as the Umma party of the former Prime Minister Sadiq al-Mahdi and the SPLM-Nord, the Sudanese branch of the South Sudanese SPLM. The opposition parties and rebel organizations called on the international community not to recognize the election results as they would lack political legitimacy. While the Sudanese government refers to the positive judgments of election observers of the African Union and the Arab League regarding the holding of the elections, which would represent a “triumph of the consolidation of democracy in Sudan”, the election observers of the “Troika” and human rights organizations, for example, come to the opposite Judgment.

Political analysts see the boycott of the elections by the most important opposition parties as a threat to democratic structures and, with the high election results for the president and the ruling party, a tendency towards a one-party state.

Omar al-Bashir was sworn in as President on June 2 for a further five-year term. The heads of state of Egypt, Zimbabwe and Kenya also attended the ceremony. In his inaugural address, he offered the rebel groups in Darfur an amnesty if these peace negotiations were approved and announced measures against the rampant corruption in the country.