By Abdinoor Ali
The growing political uncertainty in Somalia will slow down the progress the country made in the last decade. Lack of clear election laws makes the election – delayed for a month now – makes the electoral process complex.
On 17 September 2020, President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo and five regional leaders agreed on a revised election procedure based on the 2016 Somali parliamentary election. In the deal, clan elders verified by federal and state authorities would elect a parliament, whose members would then select a president. The Federal Government of Somalia agreed with member states to hold parliamentary elections on 1 December 2020.
The battle for villa Somalia will become fiercer—both because of disagreement over how to implement a September 2020 political agreement and because of foreign influence. Somalis need to put their country first and find a way to get out of the current mess – for their own people’s benefit.
Somalis are not voting in this election – clan elders will — and see politicians pulling their countries in opposite directions. Those who want to frustrate the election process and those who call for a partial election.
The contest between President Farmaajo and a coalition of opposition parties must be done in a peaceful environment that will guarantee an outcome agreeable to all. The two sides must talk, and there are sings showing progress towards this is being done. This week, the prime minister, Hussein Mohamed Roble met opposition leaders and resolved a number of issues including putting off planned protests against the government because of fear of potential violence and because of Covid-19.
Tensions spiked last week, leading to exchanges of gunfire on the streets of the capital, Mogadishu, and heightening fears that the election dispute could spiral into civil conflict.
Even so, all sides seem to be coming together for talks and agree on the main zone of contention: Gedo, Somaliland and membership of the electoral commission.
To avoid further delay, parties must come together as soon as possible. The government is under pressure to hold elections but it cannot do it alone, regional governments must support the process and cooperate.
Whatever happens, a partial or parallel elections and violence must be avoided and the government must retain its focus on al Shabab.
Supreme Court of Somalia to hear election-related cases
The Supreme Court of Somalia announced it will hear cases related to elections. Chief Justice Bashe Yusuf Ahmed said it would be illegal for the federal and state governments not to allow the courts to adjudicate over election cases.
“The Supreme Court is ready to hear any appeal that arises from an administrative decision made by the electoral commissions,” Bashe said.
Bashe was speaking at a judicial conference held in Mogadishu.
The Horn of Africa nation is preparing for parliamentary and peesidential elections in September and October respectively.
Somalia has no constitutional court but there is an electoral dispute resolution committee.
Former foreign minister joins race for Villa Somalia
Former Foreign minister Fawzia Adam becomes the firs female candidate to announce her candidature for Somalia presidency. Fawzia, who became Somalia’s first and only woman foreign minister and Deputy Prime Minister in 2012, said she is joining the race for Villa Somalia to change the course of the country’s politics. More than 30 other candidates have expressed their interest for the top job. She leads the National Democratic Party.
“My sole aim is to breath a new lease of life into Somalia. Our political ideology and believes are at the heart and soul of our political trajectory in deciding the best way Forward for my nation,” Fawzia said.
“Our people are known for their dynamism, resilience and fruitful thinking when it comes to business. If they are encouraged, the country will surely get rapid development and investment,” she added.
She is running on an anti-corruption platform. Fawzia hails from Somaliland. The Horn of Africa nation will hold presidential elections on October 10.
As foreign minister, Fawzia was instrumental in Somalia’s quest to recover state properties that had been frozen by foreign administrations, institutions and firms after the collapse of Somalia’s central government in 1991 in order to prevent unauthorized use, and began a formal assessment and recovery process of Somali national assets, which include ships and planes that are believed to be held in Italy, Germany and Yemen.
Farmajo congratulation Abiy Ahmed on his election victory
Somali President Mohamed Farmaajo has congratulated Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed whose party won the just-concluded elections in Ethiopia.
Somalia will continue to work with the government of Abiy Ahmed to further strengthen bilateral relations and benefit peoples of the two countries and the wider region, Farmajo said in a statement.
“I warmly congratulate PM Abiy Ahmed on regaining a strong mandate from the people of Ethiopia,” Farmaajo said.
Abiy’s new Prosperity Party won 410 out of 436 seats, according to electoral body.
Ethiopia has thousands of troops in Somalia under Amisom, the African Union Mission in Somalia, fighting al Shabab group. Since assuming office in 2018, Abiy has been supportive of the Somali Federal Government unlike his predecessors who supported regional administrations against the government in Mogadishu.
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