Somaliland’s Democratic Journey continues with 1 million-plus registered voters expected to cast their votes for approximately 246 candidates gunning for 82 parliamentary seats on the May 31 elections

Another 966 candidates are vying for 249 district municipality seats in the six regions making the 2021 parliamentary and civic elections be the most competitive yet in the history of the country.

Though unrecognized, Somaliland is one of the most peaceful nations in the Horn of Africa in the middle of a region facing shaky democracy.

The election campaign for local council and parliament is in full swing. The ruling Kulmiye party, led by President Muse Bihi attended the rallies in Hargeisa.

Supporters of Kulmiye party came out in droves and held rallies in support of their favorite candidates across the nation.

The president of the Republic of Somaliland who is also the chair of Kulmiye party participated in the rallies held in the capital Hargeisa freedom park.

Bihi showed optimism that the party’s candidates will be in the top list for the election winners and encouraged eligible voters to vote for Kulmiye candidates.

” We have chosen the most competent candidates. We are entrusted with power and are ready to serve the nation. None will lose the election.

They will all be victorious. The president reiterated that this election will send a clear message to SL foes. The Head of State did not name any country,”  the president said.

The President added ” Somaliland political parties are competing with each other. Kulmiye party has been put to test and vetted.”

Two political parties have ruled Somaliland over the last 30 years. The first ruling party was founded by former leader, Mohmed Haji Ibrahim Egal.

The current Kulmiye party was founded by Ahmed Mohmed M. Silanyo who was the third president of the republic.

Meanwhile, Somaliland armed forces have stepped up security in the country ahead of the elections, the interior minister said.

Armed forces-military, police, custodial corps, immigration and traffic police are working in tandem who are patrolling the streets and major freedom parks where the rallies are being held.

Mohmed Kahin, the interior minister said that despite lack of international recognition, Somaliland is known as the oasis of peace in the region.

He urged citizens to show a high sense of maturity in terms of democracy, peace and governance.

Security has been upgraded and deployed security forces who now are being supported by the defense forces.

The campaign is on now and it will be wrapped up on Friday.

President Bihi Abdi has cautioned civil servants and security services personnel not to indulge into any acts of politics or seen to be politicking.

The Head of State reiterated the need of upholding the laws of the country as spelt out in the constitution.

By Godfrey Ivudria

Busiweek

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