Somalia President, PM bicker in public over ‘right course’ of elections

By Caasimada Online

Somalia Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble has expressed his disappointment with what he termed as an apparent attempt by President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo to interfere with the PM’s management of the electoral programme.

In their latest public bickering, Farmaajo had earlier branded Roble’s election management as incompetent and called for an emergency meeting of stakeholders to “correct the course” of elections.

In a statement released in the early hours of Sunday, Farmaajo said the Prime Minister has failed to manage what he termed a straightforward election process, citing various setbacks intended to justify the statement.

Of concern to President Farmaajo is the Prime Minister’s failure to implement the terms of the Indirect Electoral Model agreed on September 17, 2020 and the Elections Guidelines agreed on October 1, 2020 by the National Consultative Council (NCC).

The President’s remarks drew an immediate response from the Prime Minister.

“The statement from the president was intentionally meant to disrupt the ongoing national elections which are currently underway across the country,” Roble said.

“Considering the timing of the statement from the Office of the President, which came after the Prime Minister had announced an upcoming National Consultative Council meeting to accelerate the elections and enhance the transparency and credibility of the electoral process,” Roble said in his repsonse.

“It is, unfortunately, clear that the President is hell-bent on disrupting the forthcoming consultative forum; a move which is indicative of the President’s unchanged yearning to further protract the ongoing national elections for personal interest,” he went on.

“During his tenure in office, the President, regrettably, invested so much time, energy and finances in frustrating the national elections and seeking illegal term extension, adversely affecting the ongoing efforts to expedite the national elections and enable the country to hold peaceful elections,” the Prime Minister further said.

Similarly, a number of politicians have sharply criticised Farmaajo’s statement as intended to jeopardise Roble’s effort.

The leader of Wadajir Party and member of the Coalition of the Presidential Candidates, Abdirahman Abdishakur, said while rubbished Farmaajo’s action are predictable they cannot scare anyone.

On his part, Abdi Farah Juha, a former federal Interior Minister, accused Farmaajo of overthrowing Somalia’s statehood.

“Through his statement, Farmaajo has staged a coup against Somalia’s statehood,” said Juha.

All this happening even with the state of Puntland having announced its support for Roble. Puntland indicated that its leaders will participate in the meeting convened by the Premier while Jubbaland announced that it will conduct the elections it planned.

Daily Nation