Parliament approves Somalia electoral deal

MOGADISHU, Somalia – Somalia’s parliament on Saturday approved the electoral deal ending months of wrangling that almost threatened to disintegrate the country, in another dramatic occasion that would definitively define the nation’s future political realignments.

Ahead of the historic bicameral chamber session, there were concerns that Parliament would sabotage the implementation of the deal, after months of disagreements between the Senate and the Lower House, who were heavily divided over the quest to resolve the pre-quagmire. electoral.

While the Senate was against the approval of various electoral agreements, the Lower House which leans towards President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo passed the legislation in what was seen as a measure to extend the tenure of the current administration to- beyond December contrary to the anticipation of the Constitution.

But in Mogadishu, the two chambers approved a recent deal between the federal government and member states, paving the way for preparations for elections later this year. The term of the current administration expires in November, after which elections will be held.

Of those who attended the meeting, 252 members approved the deal, one abstained and two rejected the 2020/21 electoral agreement, meaning the country will go to the elections as agreed at the conference of Mogadishu which brought together a number of stakeholders.

The Chambers will now propose modalities for the selection of elders who will identify the stakeholders who will participate in the elections. The teams had opted for the constituency caucus model that would see at least 101 voters choose the MPs who would later elect the chair.

Previously, the country had a total of 14,025 voters who chose MPs for the elections, but the number could be higher in the current format due to the many constituencies. The old model was known as 4.5 and was flimsy in that there were chances of picking up members of Al Shabaab at home.

However, the international community has expressed regret over the new model, insisting that it does not reflect the direct voting aspirations that Somalia has claimed. The negative reception of the agreement by the partners could further derail the long-awaited polls, which would cause even more anxiety among political actors.