Somalia’s Opposition, Regional Leaders Make Headway in Voting Procedure Talks


MOGADISHU (Somaliguardian) – Somalia’s opposition and regional state presidents have made headway in talks on the controversial procedure for the election of the Lower House of Parliament, which was agreed between the prime minister and regional leaders in a two-day meeting held in Mogadishu last week.

In a statement issued on Monday, opposition leaders called the move unconstitutional and said it contravenes an election deal signed in May that ended months-long stalemate and warned that the process may lead to a rigged vote, which may result in a civil war and loss of the international community’s trust in the government.

On Monday night, some of the opposition leaders and the regional state presidents gathered for a meeting called by the leaders of Puntland Saeed Deni and Jubaland Ahmed, in the course of which the two sides discussed the renewed standoff, with the opposition lambasting state presidents of introducing a procedure that gives them power to choose their favorite candidates for parliament positions in yet another sham election.

The two sides agreed to name a committee that correct the controversial points in the procedure and to continue holding similar talks to break the deadlock.

Somalia’s prime minister Mohamed Hussein Roble later attended a follow-up meeting with regional presidents and opposition figures in an attempt to win his support in efforts aimed at defusing renewed tensions.

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