Puntland hints at regional leader’s plans to run for Somalia president


GAROWE (Somaliguardian) – Interior Minister of the northeastern semi-autonomous region of Puntland Mohamed Abdirahman Dhabana’ad on Friday hinted at plans by regional leader Saeed Abdullahi Deni to run for Somalia president in an upcoming presidential vote.

Deni will challenge the incumbent President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo, who has been at loggerheads with the semi-autonomous regional administration over attempts to keep his influence at bay in the region’s political matters.

Earlier, Somalia’s Former Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohamed Abdirizak declared his presidential bid for 2022 in a speech in the town of Galkayo on March 7, citing widespread corruption and “dictatorial” rule by the current administration as significant incitement for his decision. read more

Dhaban’ad urged Somalis to rally their support behind Saeed Abdullahi Deni’s ambition to rise to power in the strife-torn Horn of Africa nation.

Somalis should invite President Deni to his ambition to go to Villa Somalia [Somalia’s presidential palace],” he said on Friday, speaking at a ceremony marking the conclusion of parliamentary polls by the regional administration.

It is well known what he has done in Puntland during his term in the office such as democracy and security.”

In a statement issued on Thursday, the United States said it had expanded the number of Somali individuals subject to visa restrictions following the government’s failure to conclude parliamentary elections on a self-established deadline. read more

Puntland has become the third regional administration to complete parliamentary polls. Southwest and Galmudug states earlier wrapped up filling their share of seats, but authorities in Hirshabelle and Jubaland have yet to conclude the votes after their second constituencies have been marred by repeated disputes and wrangling despite US pressure.

In a schedule rejected by some of the regional states, the country’s election body said it would conclude parliamentary votes by March 30 and would then give certificates to MPs, who would then pick a speaker, his deputies and president in a process that could take months.

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