Tuesday, April 05, 2016

International Community Welcomes Landmark Agreement on 2016 Electoral Process
APRIL 5, 2016

The international community welcomed the decision of the Puntland Government to participate fully in the electoral process that will choose a new federal parliament later this year.

Yesterday’s agreement between the Federal Government of Somalia led by Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke and the Puntland Government led by President Abdiweli Mohamed Ali “Gaas” is a very positive step for Puntland and all of Somalia.

“This landmark agreement is highly significant,” said the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General (SRSG) for Somalia Michael Keating. “The people and leaders of Puntland deserve special commendation for their political maturity. Puntland has acted in the interest of the whole of Somalia. That is encouraging for the future of the whole country.

“The agreement marks a decisive move away from the 4.5 model,” noted SRSG Keating. “2016 is an important stepping stone towards a one-person, one-vote election in Somalia in 2020. That election, in 2020, will not use the 4.5 model. Planning for 2020 must begin now.”

The international community will closely monitor the 2016 electoral process with a view to ensuring maximum fairness and transparency. International partners agreed to provide the necessary political, financial and technical support to enable universal suffrage elections in 2020, including how to conduct civil voter registration and help build electoral institutions.

The agreement was guaranteed in the Puntland capital of Garowe by the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) led by the Ethiopian Foreign Minister and Chairman of the IGAD Council of Ministers Tedros Adhanom and witnessed by SRSG Keating, the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission Francisco Madeira, the European Union Special Envoy to Somalia Michele Cervone, the IGAD Special Envoy to Somalia Mohamed Affey, and other representatives of the international community.

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