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#OmarAlBashir: State asks for more time to prepare

The Sudanese president is wanted on five counts of crimes against humanity.

FILE: Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir is wanted on five counts of crimes against humanity. Picture: AFP

PRETORIA - The state has asked for a postponement to the application to have Sudan President Omar al-Bashir arrested saying it has not had enough time to prepare.

Arguments are now centered on the order preventing al-Bashir from leaving South Africa until the hearing is finalised.

The Sudanese president is wanted for war crimes at the International Criminal Court (ICC) and has evaded arrest since 2009.

The state says three hours is simply not enough to prepare for the legal argument to be presented in this application.

Both parties have agreed that the hearing can continue tomorrow, but the conditions under which that will happen have now been a subject to debate.

The Southern African Litigation Centre (SALC) says the director general of Home Affairs should serve the court order on all points of entry in South Africa and give a list of names of the officials at those points to the centre.

But the state says this is simply overzealous and impractical as there are only 12 hours left for him to do so.

It wants the court to give an order preventing al-Bashir from leaving South Africa, but not attaching the conditions that the centre has requested.

The hearing continues.

Meanwhile, a smiling al-Bashir posed with fellow African leaders for their so-called family photo at their summit today.

As his president put on his brave face, Sudan's new Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour assured reporters that all was going well on al-Bashir's first visit to South Africa.

AU SUMMIT PROTEST

Meanwhile as AU talks continue inside the Sandton Convention Centre, scores of people have gathered outside the venue to express their grievances with issues they believe the organisation is not dealing with.

Several groups from different countries including Egypt and Lesotho are calling for greater interaction between citizens and politicians at the summit.

Drums are being beaten and vuvuzelas blown as several civil society groups call for ordinary citizen's voices to be heard at the summit.

Several opposition parties from Lesotho are among those here to petition for stronger intervention from the AU to ensure political and social stability in their country.

A large contingent of Egyptians is also here protesting what they're calling the AU's acceptance of their country's coup by inviting Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to South Africa.

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) members are also protesting for better bee implementation policies.

While all the groups are here with their own agendas, they stand united behind the idea that while the talks being held at the summit are crucial in moving the continent forward, the general public's voices aren't being heard.

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