News from Khartoum
Activists and party men challenge constitutionality of emergency order
Party men and activists, represented by a panel of lawyers, have filed an appeal with the constitutional court challenging the state of emergency and public safety 1997 and the first and second emergency orders, saying the grounds on the basis of which the decree was issued had not been made clear.
The legal panel which presented the objection indicated the lack of constitutionality of the emergency orders issued by the President of the Republic because of contradicting the Bill of Rights contained in Part II of the constitution.
The panel in the facts of the appeal referred to nine pieces of evidence to support its objection. The appeal highlighted the state and interest of each appellant separately. The panel stated that the first four appellants – ladies – have separately been subjected to measures under the challenged first and second emergency orders, in a manner that made them lose their right to safety.
The panel is of the view that the immunity of the headquarters of the fifth appellant – Baathist party – was violated, rendering it unable to carry out its activities without obtaining permission under Article 7 of the second emergency order.
The panel requested the constitutional court to overrule the law and the two orders relating to declaration of emergency. The appellants demanded repeal of Articles 4, 5 and 8 of the emergency law and the revocation of emergency orders number 1 and 2. It also called on the Constitutional Court to reserve the right of the appellants to demand compensation for damage sustained due to the enforcement of unconstitutional sentences on them.
It is to be noted that the appellants, five ladies in addition to the mainstream Arab Socialist Baathist Party, presented the challenge through a panel of nine lawyers.
Article 40/1 of the Interim Constitution of Sudan states: the right to peaceful assembly shall be guaranteed; every person shall have the right to freedom of association with others, including the right to form or join political parties, associations and trade or professional unions for the protection of his/her interests.