Somalia: Puntland's parliament plunges region into uncertainty


GAROWE – The Puntland Parliament, in a surprising move, announced its decision to go into recess today. This decision came shortly after the parliament gave its nod to three members of the much-debated Puntland Election Commission (PEC).

Opposition political associations, "Mideeye" and "Horseed," have yet to declare their representatives for the Committee. It's noteworthy that Mideye political association secured the second position in the contentious local council elections. On the other hand, Horseed chose to abstain from participating in the polls, except for EYL, UFEYN, and QARDHO.

The Mideye Political association holds a solid power base in the Barri region, whereas the Horseed association dominates in the Nugaal region, particularly in Garowe, the capital of Puntland. The non-inclusion of these two pivotal political associations in the electoral commission poses a challenge for President Dani and his political allies, primarily the Speaker of the Parliament and his two deputies.

The newly endorsed members of the Election Committee include Abdisalam Bashir Abdisalam, Mohamud Ahmed Aynab (Gubsul), and Ubax Abdullahi Abshir. Following the parliamentary approval, these members were sworn in by the Supreme Court judge, granting them immunity.

The PEC, tasked with overseeing the election process in Puntland, currently lacks a unanimous consensus. The committee comprises 12 members, with nine receiving approval earlier this month. Most of these members were handpicked by the Parliament, the ruling party, and the Presidency. They have faced allegations of aiding Said  Deni's aspirations to prolong his tenure. In contrast, the other Political associations have only elected five members.

The Constitutional Court of Puntland remains silent on the grievances of Mideeye, Horseed, and other politicians. Experts speculate that the Judiciary appears to be in cahoots with the Puntland President, who is nearing the end of his term with just four months left.

Amidst this backdrop, the Puntland administration grapples with internal strife and ambiguity concerning the nature of the 2024 presidential election. There's growing suspicion that the outgoing president, Deni, is covertly maneuvering to bolster his presidential stature.


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