Parliament extends term amid pre-election stalemate in Somalia

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The current pre-election impasse could escalate further in Somalia following the latest reports that parliament may have extended-term without laid down legal provisions, a move which could trigger endless political squabbles in the Horn of Africa nation.

Somalia was set to go elections from December last year but the plans have been derailed by the ongoing pre-election standoff which involves the federal government of Somalia and the much-united opposition, which accuses President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo of sabotage.

Reports indicate that lawmakers, whose term expired December last year, have extended their mandate contrary to the laid legal provisions, further giving loopholes for epic duels that would jeopardize any room for a pre-election deal that could solve the standoff.

Investigations by MOL indicate that the MPs have acquired new Identification Cards that allow them to access parliamentary premises, whose expiry date is December 2021. It’s not clear why the MPs chose the move rather than waiting for their planned elections.

Analysts believe that the move could complicate efforts to defuse gridlock over the electoral process that delayed the voting schedule. Already, the disputed by electoral committee has scheduled regional elections from next week but the opposition has further demanded changes.

The opposition accuses the Federal Government of Somalia of picking people friendly to the regime, some close allies of President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo, who could be facing a tough reelection debacle in February. According to them, NISA agents are involved, but Villa Somalia has often refuted the claims.

Stakeholders in the country have been calling for a ceasefire but Villa Somalia is said to be keen with plans to hold elections regardless of the pressure from a disgruntled opposition. The opposition has threatened to boycott any election held under such circumstances.

This comes amid reports that Somalia has dispatched Deputy Speaker Sheikh Mudey to Nairobi in a bid to negotiate on ways to restore diplomatic ties. Mogadishu cut ties with Nairobi last month over claims that Kenya was interfering with her internal politics.

In an undated picture, Prof Peter Kagwanja who is the husband of Kenya’s minister of defense Monica Juma met with Somali deputy speaker Sheikh Mudey in Nairobi.

The Deputy Speaker, a fierce supporter of President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo. It’s not clear what the two discussed but the severe relationship between Kenya and Somalia may have featured.