Somalia: Puntland leader eyes constitutional changes ahead of 2019 election

By Staff reporter , Garowe Online
Puntland President, Abdiweli Mohamed Ali Gaas, whose term is ending early next year [File photo]

GAROWE, Puntland - The president of Puntland, a Federal State in northeastern Somalia, Abdiweli Mohamed Ali Gaas is mulling changes to the constitution ahead of the general election in January 2019, Garowe Online reports.

Sources close to the presidency have revealed to Garowe Online that a number of outgoing parliamentarians in Puntland's capital, Garowe are working on President Ali's plan to change some articles in the state constitution.

GO has learned that the new bid by the incumbent president is aimed at expanding the number of the current 66-member Parliament as well as to create the post of the second Vice President.

State lawmakers led by Farah Nuh (Nuh Dheere), who lost the support of their clans are pushing forward the system-change which if triumphs will give them a chance to retain their Parliamentary seats, according to the reports.

To stay in power, the sitting president whose 5-year tenure expires in 3 months is said to be trying to disrupt the next election as he is pushing Puntland into the war against Somaliland in a pretext of liberating occupied territory.

MP Nuh Dheere, who is a member of the Parliamentary standing committee on finance is believed to have been part of those contributed to the financial crisis in Puntland after crippling the agencies assigned to deal with corruption.

Reports said most of the presidential candidates in the race for the presidency are utterly unaware of what is going on in the office of the president and his attempt to postpone the forthcoming election slated for the next year.

The amendments to this charter as stipulated in Article 139 of the constitution of Puntland shall be subject to strict requirements which require at least two parliamentary sessions.

The members of the term-ending regional assembly are now on recess will be back by the end of this month as the House's final session set to kick off the 25th October and will approve pending bills submitted by the government.

After this, the leadership of the parliament will ask the MPs to go to their constituencies for reelection despite stumpy hope after failing the hearts and minds of the people they have been representing in the past 5 years in the legislative branch.


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