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Somali Elections 2016

Ex-Somali refugee defeats minister to become MP



Mr Abas grew up and was educated in Dadaab, the world's biggest refugee camp, in north-eastern Kenya.

Source: BBC

A man who grew up in a refugee camp in Kenya has defeated a Somali minister to become a member of parliament.

Abdullahi Sheikh Abas, 31, was picked by an electoral college to be a federal MP.

He was up for election against Information Minister Mohammed Abdi Hassan.

Somalia has been holding indirect elections since October to renew its parliament as the country remains too dangerous for a national vote.

Much of the country is still under the control of Islamist militant group al-Shabab, which is affiliated to al-Qaeda.

Mr Abas grew up and was educated in Dadaab, the world’s biggest refugee camp, in north-eastern Kenya.

In Somalia’s long electoral process, 135 traditional clan elders selected some 14,000 delegates, who formed 275 electoral colleges.

From 23 October to 10 November, each electoral college voted for an MP to sit in the lower house of parliament.

The results are now being published and Mr Abas has been elected as federal MP for Kismayo in Somalia’s Jubaland region.

It is not clear how Mr Abas sold himself to the electoral college, but BBC Somali analyst Mohammed Abdinoor says Somalis who stayed at home have strong sympathy for returnees like Mr Abas, who grew up in refugee camps.

The newly elected MPs are due to choose a president by the end of November.



Briefing Room

Election 2016 Provisional Results (UPDATE)



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Briefing Room

International community expresses grave concern over HirShabelle disqualified candidate



The United Nations, African Union, European Union, Inter-Governmental Authority on Development, Ethiopia, Italy, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States are gravely concerned about the holding of a vote in the HirShabelle interim capital of Jowhar yesterday for a seat in the House of the People that was won by a disqualified candidate.

The Federal Indirect Electoral Implementation Team (FIEIT) recently disqualified Mr. Mohamed Abdullahi Hassan, the outgoing federal Minister of Youth and Sports, and another contender for the seat, Ahmed Sheikh Nur, for their role in the violence that occurred inside and outside the polling center in Jowhar last month in which a number of people, including electoral college delegates, were injured.  

The holding of yesterday’s election in Jowhar was in disregard of a 7 December letter sent by the FIEIT to the HirShabelle State-Level Indirect Electoral Implementation Team (SIEIT) and the state’s President Ali Abdullahi Osoble which explicitly banned Mr. Hassan and Mr. Nur from contesting the House of the People seat, which had been allocated to the Jidle clan.

Yesterday’s vote flouts the rules established for Somalia’s 2016 electoral process by the National Leadership Forum, which invested the FIEIT with the authority to disqualify parliamentary candidates found to have violated the code of conduct or engaged in abuses and malpractices. The international community will therefore insist that the decision of the FIEIT regarding the seat allocated to the Jidle clan still stands.

Mr. Keating also welcomed the communiqué issued by the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development at the 9 December extraordinary summit of heads of state and government in Addis Ababa that commended the overall progress achieved to date in the electoral process and underscored the importance of enabling the Independent Electoral Dispute Resolution Mechanism (IEDRM) to carry out its investigations of alleged electoral abuse and malpractices and ensuring acceptance and implementation of its rulings. The international community expects the IEDRM to conclude its investigations in a timely manner and to take appropriate action, including nullifying the results of the seats affected by the most egregious irregularities.

“The vote in Jowhar is deeply troubling,” said SRSG Keating. “If this outcome is allowed to stand and other egregious cases of electoral process abuse are unchallenged, then the credibility and legitimacy of the entire electoral process will be imperiled. Any spoilers who are found by the electoral implementation bodies to have violated the rules of the process must be held accountable for their actions.”

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Some journalists steer clear of controversy in coverage of Somalia’s electoral process



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