MOGADISHU, Somalia Jul 24 2012 (Garowe Online) – The Somali constitutional vote has been delayed for a third time, as elders still have not submitted the list of representatives who will vote on the constitution, Garowe Online reports.
Traditional elders stated last week, that they had completed the list of the National Constituent Assembly (NCA) who will vote on the constitution, still have not submitted the complete list to the Transitional Federal Government (TFG), which has delayed the process for a third time.
On Monday, TFG Prime Minister Abdiweli Mohamed Ali Gaas visited traditional elders stationed in Mogadishu, to plead with the group of elders to submit the list of representatives who will vote.
“We need you (elders) to speed the selection process and submit the list of representatives so this process can continue. We also need the elders to not forget the role women have in this process,” said Prime Minister Gaas.
According to local sources, the elders in Mogadishu who have submitted their selection of representatives had failed to fulfill the quota of women which was agreed on by signatories at previous meetings.
TFG leaders are worried that the failed quota could further delay the process.
The constitutional vote was delayed due to issues that some elders had with the proposed constitution, but after TFG officials allowed the elders to voice their concerns and even spent days deliberating over their issues with the constitution and finally approved it, the process has been delayed yet again.
Last Wednesday, TFG Constitutional Minister Abdirahman Hoosh Jibril declared in a press release that a weeklong review and approval of the constitution by traditional elders had been a “historic move”, adding that “the elders paved the way for the continuation of the Roadmap process”.
However, according to some TFG officials, following that statement made by Minister Jibril, some elders refused to submit their list of representatives because they wanted the TFG to adjust more articles in the constitution.
The constitution which has been the center of debate has already been amended by leaders, who stated on Monday, that the number seats in parliament had been increased from 225 to 275 and was agreed on by signatories.
Minister Jibril who spoke to reporters on Monday, said that the NCA meeting will convene on Wednesday meanwhile, African Union troops have beefed up security in the capital.