Across Somalia, 135 elders
where chosen to pick the National Constituent Assembly (NCA) as defined in the
Galkayo principles signed by leaders in March.
However the meeting has been
marred by rumors that the elders will have to pick the 825 representatives of
the NCA while in the war-torn capital, Mogadishu.
If that was hard enough they have to pick the representatives so the proposed
constitutional meeting could take place on the 15th of May.
Since May 5 2012, 135
traditional elders based on the 4.5 system have been meeting in Mogadishu to choose the
NCA. Since opening day of the conference there have been setbacks and delays.
The opening day of the conference was delayed for 7 hours and the second day of
the meeting almost did not occur. To top that off, there are still traditional
elders that have not attended that meeting as of yet.
The choosing of 825
representatives that will vote on a Somalia constitution is not an easy
process. A Somalia
draft constitution which in it states, the constitution cannot be amended for 7
years, cannot be voted on by just anyone. Especially in the current situation Somalia has
been in for over 20 years. The process of choosing the NCA unlike the Somalia
constitution should not be rushed, but it seems that the NCA process is trying
to be hurried to meet a deadline.
Contrary to what some TFG
officials believe, the selection of the NCA could not possibly occur in Mogadishu because elders
need to meet with the constituents of their region in order to choose the most
qualified candidate. But politicians with their own objectives have pressured
the elders to choose the NCA before the 15th of May.
Traditional elders have also
had to worry about security in the capital or the lack of, with bombings,
assassinations, attacks on the presidential palace and all around insecurity occurring
on nightly basis in the capital. One traditional elder who spoke to Garowe
Online said that he was paying for security personally while in the capital
from, as were other elders.
Delays, insecurity and the
need for a qualified NCA are reasons enough for traditional elders to be given
time to choose the representatives from their constituents without having to
worry about a mortar attack.
The international community
who has backed the TFG wants results by August, and anyone who tries to stand
in front of the process has been given a clear warning, to back off or face
repercussions. However a process that will hopefully return Somalia to a
country not divided by clans or regions with a functioning government cannot be
completed in two weeks.
Many Somalis have had issues
with the Somalia
draft constitution and since the TFG is adamant that no one will hinder the
process the only way to reach a peaceful agreement amongst Somalis is have a
transparent selection of the NCA. A selection of representatives who hold their
constituents issues in mind when voting on the Somalia draft constitution.
Garowe Online Editorial
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