Niamey - Niger's political impasse continued Monday with the opposition rejecting the appointment of a new prime minister after a graft scandal brought down the previous government last week.

"Our response is in the negative because we have rejected a prime minister over particular complaints and the same are valid in respect of his successor," Mohamed Bazoum from the main opposition Niger Party for Democracy and Socialism told a radio station.

"We had initially accepted it (the nomination) but now we are imposing conditions," said Sanoussi Jackou from another opposition grouping, the Niger Party for Self-Rule.

President Mamadou Tandja had nominated Seyni Oumarou as prime minister and head of government on Sunday, two days after Hama Amadou resigned after seven years in the post when he lost a no-confidence vote in parliament.

That vote was triggered by allegations of embezzlement of more than €6-million (about R57-million) earmarked for the education ministry, in which two former ministers were implicated.

Four groups previously allied to the ruling party voted against the government after Amadou refused to testify before an inquiry investigating the siphoning off of education ministry funds.

Oumarou, 57, is a former infrastructure minister who is close to the ex-prime minister. - Sapa-AFP