Jubbaland has declared it will not participate in this year’s parliamentary elections but will instead submit its own list of MPs to the Federal Government unless there is agreement on how the elections will be conducted.
In a letter seen by HOL dated January 21, Jubbaland Interior Minister Mohamed Warsame Darwish notifies the National Independent Elections Commission (NIEC) that the polls body will not be allowed to conduct any elections work in the state.
“Jubbaland informs the NIEC that until an agreement on the elections is reached, no activities related to the 2020/21 elections will happen in Jubbaland,” the letter reads in part.
However, the minister says, “Jubbaland will play its role in accordance with resolutions of the Federal Parliament regarding filling of vacant seats.”
The statement from Jubbaland compounds an already fragile electoral process which to date remains unclear with only nine months before parliamentary elections begin.
The NIEC had proposed a Proportional Representation elections system and even went ahead to popularize it but the Lower House dropped the proposal and instead opted for the First-Past-the-Post or Majoritarian Model where the candidate with the highest number of votes is declared the winner.
Jubbaland has been at loggerheads with the Federal Government following Mogadishu’s declaration last September it would not recognize the election of Ahmed Madobe as president. In a communique Monday following a meeting in Bosaso, Madobe and his Puntland counterpart Abdullahi Dani lashed out at the Federal Government for what it termed as continued interference with the Federal Government.
Puntland is likely to take a similar stance with Jubbaland as the two states maintain frosty relations with the Federal Government.
The Elections Bill is currently in the Upper House having missed the June 2019 target proposed by the UN Security Council in early 2019.