Said Abdullahi Deni elected President of Puntland state of Somalia

Puntland has just elected a new president. Saïd Abdullahi Deni was chosen on Tuesday morning by the Parliament of this semi-autonomous state that is part of Somalia. The election was calm. This is partly to reassure observers and the international community.

Many sighed with relief when Said Abdullahi PDeni’s election was proclaimed calmly. Several candidates have welcomed a fair, balanced ballot, while recognizing the victory of the former minister.

Many are reassured by the election of Puntland. A calm vote, apparently fair and without intervention of the central power, offering Said Abdullahi Deni a victory. A crucial point, because the security risk in Somalia is so high that the slightest crisis risks destabilizing already fragile institutions.

Nothing to do with the vote last month in the Southwest, where the central power of Mogadishu is accused of having weighed heavily, stopping one of the favorites, deploying the army and repressing demonstrations. ”  The federal state seems to have less influenced this election. It’s reassuring even if everything was not perfect with, as often rumors of corruption or journalists intimidated,  “says a diplomat.

However, we must relativize, ” everything was not perfect, with as often rumors of corruption, ” says a diplomat.

In two years, Somalia must hold a historic ballot on the principle of one person, one vote. Regional elections have often been presented as tests. ”  With what happened last month in the South West and lack of transparency in Puntland, this is not necessarily a good omen,  ” says a good source.

A native of Mogadishu

We are now waiting to see what position will hold Said Abdullahi Deni vis-à-vis Mogadishu while the federal government has been in open crisis with its federated states for months. ”  He’s a pragmatist, with a lot of political experience. His past as a federal minister is that he knows the system and the key players,  “says a researcher.

The outgoing president of Puntland, pitifully eliminated in the first round, was in the forefront of the sling against the central state. The new head of state, Saïd Abdullahi Deni is precisely former Somali Minister of Planning. He operated in Mogadishu, where he was born, which could allow a relaxation.

It is expected on other files also very sensitive. In particular security, with the presence in Puntland of the Islamic State and shebabs. ”  The situation has deteriorated in the last two years. Puntland can not afford to weaken again. The region can not afford to lose more territory, “says an analyst.