165 days are remaining from the date assigned for the elections of House of Representatives and Local Councils in Somaliland – The Election Day is scheduled on March 27, 2019. But, there are enormous hinders on the occurrence of the elections. These emerging issues can affect the election plan and preparation, if not come up a quick plan to solve the challenges, it is very difficult to hold the election on time because of the short period and the tasks which are needed to be done before the election date. Also the stakeholders are not on the same side how election will happen and still there is no common agreed plan and roadmap about the upcoming elections between the political parties.
Please the Full Report Here: Election Report: Challenges and Solutions
Challenges to hold the election of parliament and local council elections on time.
Following are the most vital challenges on the upcoming Parliament and Local Council elections:
- The Assurance of the Three political Parties: in order to hold free and fair election, the election stakeholders must agree the roadmap and preparation process of the election and also the Election Commission must have the confidence of the stakeholders. WADDANI Opposition party is not happy about the work of the National Electoral Commission (NEC) and they sent a complaint letter to the president of Somaliland Muse Bihi Abdi, which they demanded the termination of the Election Commission, but the president exposed that he is not agreed the accusation from Waddani party to the Election Commission. Still that problem exists, without solving this matter, can affect the election preparation process.
- Election Bill: The Bill has been in the Parliament more than three months and still the house didn’t debate it. MPs pointed out that there are some political concerns in the bill which MPs in the parliament have opposing views, like the seat allocation of the parliament. They believe that they can’t debate the seat allocation formula of the Parliament in the bill, without political agreement among the Political Parties, the Government and the Regions who are complaining about the current seat allocation of the parliament. Somaliland has 6 regions, every region has its own seat allocation of the 82 MPs in the parliament,
- Sanaag Region has 12 MPs,
- Sool has 12 MPs,
- Togdheer has 15 MPs
- Sahil has 10 MPs
- Marodi-jeh (Hargeisa) 20 MPs
- Awdal has 13 MPs
For Example Awdal and Eastern Regions are complaining about the current seat allocation formula and the representation of the parliament which they believe it is unfair. They are lobbying to redistribute the seat allocation to have more seats in the lower house of the Parliament. This issue has its own political weight in the election of House of Representatives.
- women’s quota: in the electoral bill, this needs a political pressure to support the adoption of the quota.
- Security Tensions in Eastern Regions: The other political challenges which can be an obstacle to the upcoming election, is the security tensions in eastern regions of Somaliland which has its security and political weight on the upcoming elections. If not solved the security tension of Tukaraq, the armed insurgent movement in Sanaag region and as well as the other post-election grievances resulted by the presidential election, these issues can have a political and security impact and pressure to the upcoming election, particularly in eastern regions, where government will need more security forces during the election preparation and the election day, but now the security forces are busy to those tensions in eastern regions.
- International Election Stakeholders: International Election Stakeholders are not giving main concentration and attention to Somaliland upcoming elections unlike the previous elections. This will also have an effect on the current preparation process of the upcoming election. Most of the donors gave their main effort and attention to Somalia’s upcoming election. UK’s State Minister of Africa Harriett Baldwin and Denmark’s Ambassador to Somalia Amb. Mette Knudsen met the president of Somaliland and discussed Election Related issues. It is very important to Somaliland Election Process to have the attention of the International Community.
There are also technical issues which is needed to be done before the election date. For Instance, updating the voter registration, like registering the voters who missed the earlier registration, citizens who reached the voting age after the earlier voter registration etc; all these issues need a concrete plan, political agreement, time and financial input.
Please the Full Report Here: ELECTION MONITORING REPORT