Opposition tells PM to show independence, work towards inclusive electoral process

Xubnaha Midowga Musharraxiinta Madaxweynaha

Somalia’s Council of Presidential Candidates (CPC) has urged Prime minister Mohamed Hussein Roble to stay free from any external influence that could further deteriorate the political crisis in the country.

In a statement, the opposition asked Roble to “stop unnecessary and wasteful foreign travel” hours after the PM attended the inauguration ceremony of president, Ismail Omar Guelleh in Djibouti.

The CPC which brings together 14 presidential candidates among them two former presidents demanded the government led by Roble to immediately begin work towards a transparent electoral process.

“The Council urges PM Roble to show independence, stop unnecessary and wasteful foreign travel and immediately begin work towards a transparent electoral process agreeable to all and acceptable to the Somali people,” the statement reads in part.

According to the statement, the Council said they wondered the government’s call for the dismissal of the newly appointed AU, John Dramani Mahama, expressing concern over “inconsistent response of the Federal Government of Somalia to the stagnant electoral process”.

“Initially the Government requested the African Union (AU) to intervene the crisis claiming a preference for “African Solutions to African problems” with the intention circumventing the work of the International Community representatives in Halane,” the council said. “Following the nomination of the AU High Representative to oversee the process, the Government reneged on its original request and subsequently claimed that the PM will convene a meeting on May the 20th purportedly to solve outstanding issues.”

Last week, Somalia rejected the appointment and planned deployment of AU High Representative John Mahama to lead the mediation talks noting it did not have confidence in the former Ghanaian president owing to his ties to Kenya.

In a letter dated May 10, Foreign Affairs Minister Mohamed Abdirizak told the African Union Commission chairman Moussa Mahamat that Mahama was not welcome in Somalia and that his arrival would not add value since there was already a negotiated settlement.

“It is indeed surprising that a candidate with an extensive link with Kenya’s leadership has been chosen by the AU to facilitate talks on a political impasse partly engineered by those the Kenyan leadership has supported,” the letter read in part.

The Federal Government noted that it was withdrawing support for the AU High Representative.

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