Somaliland set to conduct elections before Nov. 13 amid political obstacles

In Hargeisa, Somaliland’s election commission plans to hold elections by November 13th. The commission confirmed the presidential, parliamentary, and local council elections will take place on this day.

The electoral commission stated that the presidential race will feature Kulmiye, UCID, and Waddani parties. Meanwhile, the parliamentary and local council elections will have these three parties and ten other political organizations.

Despite the lack of global recognition, Somaliland has been commended for progressing towards a multiparty democratic system since gaining independence from Somalia in 1991.

The upcoming presidential election will be the third universal suffrage in Somaliland, with previous elections seeing peaceful power transitions between parties.

However, the electoral process has experienced delays since 2022, even after the incumbent president’s term and parliament expired.

These delays led to protests and a violent crackdown by security forces, raising concerns about Somaliland’s political stability.

Somaliland has been known for political compromise and stability through consensus-building and locally led conflict resolution over the years.

Recent events, such as the agreement with Ethiopia in January 2024 allowing access to the Red Sea and the conflict in Laascaanood in August 2023, have plunged Somaliland into crisis, prompting local calls to resolve the electoral deadlock.

Efforts from the international community have made progress, bringing opposition groups and President Muse Bihi together to address remaining electoral issues.

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