Saturday, January 29, 2022
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The Impasse of Somalia’s ongoing elections: The case of Union of Presidential Candidates

By Osman H. Mohamed

Why is election conducted?

Elections are said to be a hallmark of democracy and an important instrument through which leaders are elected to public office. The nature of democracy is that elected officials are accountable to the people, and they must return to the voters at prescribed intervals to seek their mandate to continue in office.

For that reason, most democratic constitutions provide that elections are competitive, inclusive and held at fixed regular intervals, giving the voters the opportunity to elect their leaders.

When one is in love, a cliff becomes a meadow

Union of Presidential Candidates

The Union of Presidential Candidates that includes some personalities that are not serious contenders but just there to make a name for themselves, along with Puntland and Jubaland Presidents were claiming for the best part of  the year  before the start of the election “ that they want to see a fair and transparent elections monitored by stakeholders, including civil society and International monitors”.

On the onset of the long awaited elections, President Ahmed Madobe of Jubaland kick started the election with four seats of the Senate. The way he conducted was a blatant corruption that was a clear contravention of the Constitution as well as to the Indirect Election agreed upon protocols.

This incident alone should have been a wakeup call for the Union of Presidential Candidates as well as for Prime Minister Roble who is in charge of the elections. The vote rigging that took place in the so called Jubaland election, regarding the Upper House had put to shame all the vote wrongdoings in the recent history of Somalia.

President Madobe

The International Community were alarmed by the degree of corruption that took place in Jubaland Senatorial election but to their surprise, before they put their concerns on paper, The Prime Minister and most of Union of Presidential Candidates, who are blinded by the interest of the presidential seat, showered congratulatory notes on President Ahmed Madobe’s sham senatorial election.

The Presidential Candidates were on the belief that President Ahmed Madobe was their man and that he would sway the rigged seats for them, not knowing that he is subservient to Puntland President. The people who had their ears on the ground were long well aware that Puntland President is a Presidential candidate and that Ahmed Madobe totally cognizant that he can’t hold his Jubaland Presidential seat after the federal elections, chose to do the dirty works for Puntland President in exchange for money. Setting a side the Koombe seat Madobe gave to   Puntland, he most recently recruited the Mayor of Kismayo from Garrowe – Puntland  as if Jubaland has no people of such caliber to be a mayor of Kismayo!.

Never give a power to an undeserved

The corrupt Jubaland standard was adopted and implemented to the letter by the rest of Federal Members States with the exception of Hirshabeele and Northern Regions of Somalia (Somaliland) and once again neither the Union of Presidential Candidates nor the Prime Minister condemned the outright corruption that, in the eyes of the people, delegitimized the so called Upper House Elections fiasco.

Come the election of the 275 seats of the Lower House – the Union of Presidential Candidates who were accomplices, to the broad daylight robbery of the Upper House Seats, claim that they have officially boycotted the on going Parliamentary elections in the country, because of a corrupt selection process. They assume that the people have short memory and will listen and fall into their personal insatiability love for power.

The masses believe, if the Union of the Presidential candidates, get their way they would have conducted elections that are even much worse than what we have seen so far that gave power to undeserving self-appointed politicians that are soon to sit at the Upper House.

The rain can’t fall only on one roof

The flood gates of the corruption were opened wide when Jubaland President corrupted the first four seats of the Upper House. The opportunity to nullify the sham election at the bud was at hand but PM Roble and the Union of Presidential Candidates thought somehow it will mysteriously self-correct.

When rain comes, it wets the rich and the poor alike without discrimination, so when corruption is condoned it affects the mighty and the weak in equal measure. The election to the Houses of the Parliament can’t be half morally wrong so the only way out of this quagmire is to do the election of the two Houses of the Federal Parliament from scratch.

It was the Union of the Presidential candidates and the two Regional Presidents of Puntland and Jubaland who campaigned against one man one vote and in doing so nearly burned down the capital city and displaced quarter of a million of Mogadishu residents. It’s again the Union of the Presidential candidates who were eager to quickly adopt this indirect election that we are all well versed its product will never be fair, it’s the Union of the Presidential candidates who was congratulating President Ahmed Madobe when he messed up the first four seats of the Upper House and now it’s the Union of the Presidential candidates who are blaming everybody but not themselves.

At the end of the day whatever comes out of this election homes on the leader who is in charge of the election.  Whatever went wrong during the course of this election rests at the door of Prime Minister Roble as he is the head of the election of the Federal Parliament and history will hold him accountable for many years to come.

Osman H. Mohamed
Email: [email protected]

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