Somalia’s Senate speaker urges UN, AU to intervene in dispute over Somaliland elections committee

Mogadishu, 15 November 2020, (HOL): Somalia’s Upper House speaker has called on the international community to intervene in the ongoing row over the appointment of the elections committee which will oversee the election of representatives from Somaliland accusing president Mohamed Farmaajo of unilaterally forming the committee.

Hashi said in a letter dated November 13 seen by HOL the move by the president ‘will have catastrophic consequences for the Somali people.’

The Senate speaker who is also the senior-most elected leader from Somaliland told the UN and the African Union, Somaliland, like all other Federal Member Member States has the right to appoint its own committee and should not be dictated by anyone.

“The President and his team who are running for office have appointed my constituency election committee, thus the president and his team have become judge and jury,” Hashi said.

He directed blame at Farmaajo, his Prime Minister Mohamed Roble and the head of the intelligence agency Fahad Yasin for ‘gerrymandering the process to select supporters to represent the North in the next parliament.’

Noting that federal lawmakers from Somaliland safeguarded the unity of Somalia, Hashi said, ‘it is only fitting that the formation of the election committees for the Northern Somali Unionist MPs are formed under a consensus based formula which is inclusive to all parties from the northern regions’.

Hashi’s remarks add to the increasing pressure on President Farmaajo to keep off the Somaliland issue. Eminent scholar Professor Abdi Samatar warned last week Farmaajo was fomenting a civil war in the manner in which he was handling the election issue.

Villa Somalia and security agents are conniving and these mistakes could result in a civil war,” said Professor Samatar. “What’s happening,” the university don and political activist said amounted to “political rape.”

Twelve presidential candidates and opposition parties last week also protested the move by Villa Somalia calling on the president to rescind his decision.