A “liberal” politician becomes a second wife to an “Islamist” minister

Altaghyeer: Khartoum

Social media platforms erupted when news broke of the marriage of Hamid Mumtaz, minister of federal governing and political director of the National Congress, to head of the Liberal Democratic Party Dr. Mayada Suwaraldahab, who was recently appointed to the position of state commissioner.

Critics openly wondered how a head of a party adopting liberalism and secularism would accept being a second wife, whereas those with traditional beliefs pointed out that polygamy is a right granted to men in Islam. Some criticized the timing of the marriage as the country is engulfed in crises while others considered the issue as personal.

Mumtaz is one of the Islamists who initially supported Alturabi in the 1999 rift, but was eventually lured with “cash and employment opportunities” to abandon his stance and join the ruling party.

Observers speculate that Mayada was given her current position as a reward for participating in the national dialogue, and is accused within political circles of sustaining a pragmatic approach to politics in order to achieve her goals even if they appeared contradicted.

Mayada was part of the secular opposition which rejected joining the national consensus alliance because it included regressive forces (she meant the National Nation party and unionists groups) but she ended in an partnership with alliances including extreme Islamists groups like the Fair Peace forum, which paved the way for her participation in the government along with the national dialogue parties.

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