No reopening of pre-electoral agreement, say international partners calling for dialogue
MOGADISHU, Somalia – In a move to restore hope and electoral confidence, Somalia’s international partners have warned against reopening the September pre-election deal, adding that the country’s politicians should embrace dialogue and compromise in l interest of stability.
In a statement released on Tuesday, the partners said they were “deeply concerned” by the lingering electoral deadlock over the implementation of the pre-election agreement, which was signed by President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo and five leaders of the federal states. Last year.
The statement was released hours after the presidential candidates union accused Farmajo of plotting to “overtake” power contrary to the rule of law. The union, which includes 14 presidential candidates, called on the international community to participate and “prevent” the country from descending into chaos.
Some of the union’s leading figures are former Presidents Sharif Sheikh Ahmed and Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, former Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire and Wadajir leader Abdirahman Abdishakur. The team accuses Farmajo of having installed NISA agents, civil servants and his followers on the electoral committee.
But international partners, in what appears to be a stern warning to the opposition, now want political leaders to ensure the deal is implemented in addition to reaching a compromise for the sake of the elections, a step many are unwilling to adopt.
The partners appreciated the visit of Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble to Galmadug and Northeastern State where he tried to push for broader discussions on the ballot box.
However, the prime minister said the elections would go ahead as planned, especially in Galmadug, Hirshabelle and Southwest, a move that a number of stakeholders opposed.
The partners noted that the September 17 deal has been endorsed by the federal government, all federal member states and both houses of parliament, and has also been well received by many presidential candidates.
Despite the disappointment of partners and many Somalis that this model falls far short of “ one person, one vote ” elections, the September 17 agreement remains the only acceptable basis for the 2021 elections.
“There can be no reopening of the September 17 Accord or the creation of an alternative or parallel process. Broadly inclusive agreements on its implementation are necessary to ensure the credibility of this process,” one reads in the press release.
“This would be in line with the agreed commitment of the Somali Partnership Forum. The partners would like an accelerated effort to urgently resolve the outstanding issues and conclude such agreements in the coming days so that the elections can begin later this day. this month. “
Partners urged Somali leaders to respect and fully implement the 30% quota for women in parliament, as they pledged to do in the September 17 Accord.
The government has delayed plans to implement the agreement following objections from opposition leaders and a number of states which have raised serious integrity concerns.
International partners, the statement added, “reaffirm that any threat or use of violence is not acceptable.” They also stress the importance of a free and open political space in which candidates can express their views peacefully and the media can operate without restriction, he added.