MOGADISHU (Somaliguardian) – Somalia’s regional state presidents are pushing for diminishing the powers of the Federal Electoral Implementation Team (FEIT), after it ordered a re-run of elections for two disputed parliament seats whose results had been invalidated, Caasimada Online news website reported on Tuesday.
Position of regional leaders, including key allies and critics of the incumbent president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo, remains unified on the ongoing “fraudulent” elections.
The federal electoral body earlier said an investigation had found evidence of irregularities in the elections for two seats in Southwest regional state. It came after former speaker of parliament Mohamed Osman Jawari said he had been blocked from running for one of the positions.
Puntland and Jubaland presidents, who have been key critics of the incumbent president, now appear to be pursuing personal gains during the electoral process and want to ensure that all their allies win as their counterparts in Galmudug and Southwest state have done. They deem the electoral body’s power to order a re-run of votes as direct threat against them, sources were quoted by Caasimada Online as saying.
State presidents want that only the National Consultative Council to have the power to nullify results of disputed votes and order a re-run of elections. But the Prime Minister, who is also a member of the council has hailed the electoral board’s move to soothe concerns by opposition leaders.
Saeed Deni, Puntland leader, who is planning to announce his run for Somalia’s president, is exerting major efforts in removing his foes from the list of candidates participating in the race for parliamentary seats allocated for the region. His plans have triggered tensions with a faction of the region’s forces in the coastal town of Bosaso after he had sacked a top commander.
Jubaland and Puntland leaders fear that the electoral body’s powers could serve against them and believe that results of elections for many seats could be nullified due to Villa Somalia’s influence within the team.
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