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Somali presidential candidate: More violence expected as elections inch closer

Monday, November 07, 2016

Close to 30 people have died in violent clashes in Somalia over the weekend. The country is supposed to hold elections this December. DW spoke to presidential aspirant Fadumo Dayib.


DW: How is the security situation in Somalia now that the electoral process is underway?

Fadumo Dayib: The security situation in Galkayo is deteriorating rapidly. The same is happening in Mogadishu: There was an explosion at the National Intelligence Headquarters the other day, followed by sporadic gunfire. Unfortunately this seems to be picking up speed and it will increase as the elections - or the selections - come closer. But of outmost concern is the situation in Galkayo. On Sunday, more than 25 people were killed there, 85 injured and almost 85,000 displaced. The situation is grave and very worrisome.

Are you optimistic that the elections will go on according to plan?

That remains to be seen. We have seen the deferment of these selections on several occasions. There is the possibility that the presidential selections could be deferred to some time in December but that remains to be seen. I am not holding my breath. There is a high probability that we will once more fall behind the deadlines based on the patterns that we have seen before.

How free and fair are these elections going to be?

[These] are not free and fair selections. This is a rigged and corrupt election. It is an election or a selection that is unconstitutional. The 4.5 clan-based system is not recognized by the Somali constitution, it is not as per the Somali traditions and culture and it is certainly not an Islamic way of conducting affairs in this country. It is a system that is oppressive. It excludes the majority of Somalis, particularly women and the youth. So this is by far the most corrupt selections that we have seen so far.

So how confident are you that you will win the presidency come election day?

Most of the presidential candidates probably understand that their chances are very slim. We have an incumbent that is busy rigging the elections. He is using all the money that he looted during his time in office to finance this highly corrupt selections. Unless we come together, coalesce around an ideology and put forward a candidate that we believe can run the race, we don't stand a chance. It's not about me. Unfortunately the majority of the presidential candidates do not stand a chance against this highly corrupt system.

Why do you refer to "selections" and not "elections"?

I call it "selections", because the Somalis are not going to be the ones voting. It will be a one percent minority, an elite that will be voting. Somalis have not had an opportunity to vote in 48 years. This year they were supposed to have democratic elections. That's why I stepped forward and declared my candidacy. Once again that wish is being taken away from them, their right to exercise their democratic rights is being taken away. That's why I am calling it "selections." It's not an election, it is not democratic and Somali citizens are not the ones voting.

Fadumo Dayib is the only female candidate in the race for a new Somali president. 14,000 delegates from all regional states are supposed to select a new parliament and president in December this year. The elections have been postponed twice.

Interview: Isaac Mugabi


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