Somalia: Puntland President Admits Federal MPs' election Rigging Amid Election Dispute
GAROWE, Somalia - Amid escalating tensions over the disputed local council election process, Puntland state leader, Said Abdullahi Deni admitted to rigging Members of Parliament (MPs) during a meeting with elders from Mudug region in northern Galkayo city on May 13.
Abdikarim Guure, a former member of the Puntland state parliament, revealed that Deni called the meeting to offer an apology for rigging the seats of Omar Mohamud, a sub-clan of the Majeerteen tribe, in the Federal parliament during the indirect 2022 election in Somalia.
Guure stated that while the elders accepted Deni's apology, they opposed his proposed plan to extend his term in office, arguing that such a move contradicts the Puntland constitution.
The traditional elders of the Mudug region underscored the importance of timely elections. They warned Deni against holding a contentious local council election that could threaten Puntland's security and stability.
Deni, who has ceased cooperation with the federal government as a form of political protest, is said to be seeking an extension of his tenure through the council elections until Somalia’s presidential election in 2026.
As of now, the Puntland presidency has not provided any comments about the meeting. Moreover, no pictures or footage from the closed-door talks in Galkayo have been released.
This recent meeting underscores the complex political dynamics in Puntland amid ongoing election tensions, highlighting the necessity for transparent dialogue and consensus-building to uphold stability in the region.