Newly appointed Mauritanian Prime Minister Ismail Ould Badah Ould Cheikh Sidia has chosen members of his government, of 25 ministers.
Ould Cheikh Sidia, 58, replaced Ahmed Salim Ould Bashir who resigned last Saturday.
In his first statement after the appointment, PM Sidia said the President entrusted him with the formation of a government, taking into account the magnitude of challenges and noble objectives.
The new government did not include members of certain groups such as Tawassul Party, the political arm of the Muslim Brotherhood in Mauritania.
The representation of women in the new government drew criticism from Mauritanian feminist activists, who saw this as a decline in the presence of women in decision-making positions, as the cabinet included five women, down from seven.
On the other hand, the President tried in his new government to introduce new faces of qualified people, as five of the new ministers were working in international organizations including the World Bank and the UNICEF.
Mauritanians are betting on these competencies in order to overcome the country’s economic problems, fight corruption that plagues the government, and achieve comprehensive reform in basic services sectors of education, health and employment.
Six ministers from the previous government are taking part in the cabinet, including four who kept their portfolios, according to a presidential decree, namely Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, Nani Ould Chrougha, Sidi Ould Salem, and Mohamed Ould Abdel Fattah.
Mauritanian writer and political analyst Mokhtar Abdu said that the Muslim Brotherhood in Mauritania is going through internal crises that make it unable to appear in the political scene.
He pointed out that the current crisis suffered by the Muslim Brotherhood reflects the lack of confidence among its leaders, which is reflected in the successive splits within the group.
He further referred to the tough phase that the Muslim Brotherhood’s Tawassul Party is going through reflects a rivalry over the leadership of the organization, eroding through its already affected population.