Somalia's Int'l partners welcome Mogadishu talks
MOGADISHU, Somalia - International partners have lauded efforts taken by Somalia leaders in a bid to ease pre-election tensions, following the decision to reconvene in Mogadishu, the country's capital, after weeks of blame games over various issues among them, the model for elections.
President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo convened a meeting in the capital which brought together a number of stakeholders, and until now, the team is still holed up in constructive meetings as they try to resolve the impasse which threatens millions of Somalia's due to a possibility of election chaos.
The tenure for the current parliament expires in November and various leaders including those from some states and the opposition have been accusing Farmajo of a plot to extend his term. However, the Somali leader has often dismissed such reports, terming them "backward and primitive".
In a statement issued on Monday, the partners among them the European Union and the US, hailed Farmajo for agreeing to meet top stakeholders, adding that such actions would give room for a consensus over the model and date for upcoming elections.
"International partners welcome the resumption of dialogue between the Federal Government of Somalia [FGS] and the five Federal Member States [FMS]," read the statement. "The partners commend President Mohamed Abdullahi ‘Farmaajo’ and the FMS Presidents for participating in these important meetings in Mogadishu."
Jubaland President Ahmed Madobe and his Puntland counterpart Said Abdullahi Deni were first to arrive in Mogadishu almost a fortnight ago. The two leaders, who are sworn critics of Farmajo, had boycotted the Dhusamareb III conference, where a deal was reached by those present.
Following a request by the two leaders, HirShabelle leader Mohamed Abdi Waare, Southwest President Abdiaziz Lafta-Gareen and Galmadug leader Ahmed Abdi Kariye arrived in Mogadishu last week. The three leaders are close confidants of President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo.
The international community urged all the six leaders along with Mogadishu Mayor Omar Filish to reach a consensus for the sake of averting a possible pre-election crisis. The remaining stakeholders, the statement read, should also be consulted.
"The partners urge the Somali leaders to engage fully in serious dialogue aimed at reaching broad agreement on a credible and implementable electoral model," they said. "The partners hope that other key Somali political stakeholders will also be consulted, as discussions advance, to expand support for an agreement and its implementation."
On Monday, a photo of the seven leaders walking side by side was released, with political analyst Rashid Abdi saying that a deal could be reached by Friday this week. Villa Somalia is yet to issue a statement on the progress of the talks which could define the destiny of the Somalia people.
"International partners appeal to Somalia’s leaders to be guided by the national interest and the democratic aspirations of the Somali people at this historic moment," added the statement, which was also backed by the United Nations.
At Mogadishu, the leaders are expected to agree on whether to adopt the Constituency Caucus model of elections, which was approved by those who were in Dhusamareb. There are other key issues such as the delimitation of boundaries and representation for Banadir and Somaliland in the Senate which are yet to be discussed.