In Somalia, political leaders agree to direct elections, unified election schedules, and establishment of presidential system

By Harun Maruf, 2 June 2023
Somalia's National Consultative Council (photo credit: Horn Observer)
Somalia's National Consultative Council (photo credit: Horn Observer)
Somalia's political leaders have agreed to reshape the country's political system after four days of meetings in the capital, Mogadishu. In a communique issued early [28 May], the National Consultative Council, which includes the federal leaders, [...] as well as four regional leaders and the mayor of Mogadishu, have agreed to introduce direct elections as early as next year and unify the election schedules, and endorsed establishment of a presidential system for the country. In a departure from clan-based power sharing, the leaders agreed that one-person-one-vote elections will take place once every five years. A 15-member national election and border committee will be formed to manage all local, regional and federal elections. The local council elections will be the first to take place on June 30 of next year. This will be followed that year by regional parliamentary and regional leadership elections on November 30, the communique read. The leaders have agreed that there will be only two political parties that compete for power in the country. [...] Perhaps the most significant article in the agreement is the restructuring of the leadership system by abolishing the premiership. In its place, the leaders endorsed a presidential system, with the president and vice president of the country elected directly on a single ticket. The same applies to the regional presidents and their respective vice presidents. The endorsement of a presidential system will require a federal constitutional amendment, as the current constitution provides for a parliamentary system in which lawmakers elect a president, who then appoints a prime minister.
Read the full article here: Voice of America


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