MOGADISHU ( PPM) – Puntland State of Somalia will lose the privilege to federally represent constituencies in disputed territories of the ex-British Somaliland.
A seventeen-member Provisional Committee tasked with completing the electoral law and appointed by the Upper and Lower Houses has a mandate “to prepare the electoral law for members of the Upper House an d Lower House from Northern Regions (Somaliland)”.
If the new law becomes a basis for the planned 2021 elections in Somalila, Puntland State will have the privilege to send to the two Houses only members who hail from territories in the ex-Italian Somaliland.
The use of the word “Somaliland” in the electoral law indicates the policy of the Federal Government to pave the way for South-North talks. At a recent question and answer session in Mogadishu the Federal Minister of Planning Jamal Mohamed Hassan argued that Puntland State and Somaliland Administration “do not send aid earmarked for constituencies in disputed territories to people in those territories“.
“The goal is to isolate Puntland if it boycotts the electoral law” says Awad Yusuf, a history lecturer in Mogadishu. “Northern Somalia is a phrase that politically keeps Puntland in the South geographically and politically, and cuts it off from regions it federally represents now. Some of the regions are under Somaliland control.”
The 2016 electoral agreement that gave Puntland State the privilege to federally represent constituencies in disputed territories no longer applies because the new electoral law was passed in December without the input of Federal Member States.
© Puntland Post Monthly , 2020