Thursday November 8, 2018
MOGADISHU (HOL) – Somali government warned the United Nations against interference in the country’s internal politics, in the first direct jab at the UN amid difference over the forthcoming regional elections in the Southwest State which is scheduled to take on Nov. 17.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, the United Nations’ Somalia mission warned that events unfolding in the last few days in the region, including the ‘divisions among the stakeholders’, ahead of the upcoming presidential election have the potential to lead to violence.
The statement which had apparently infuriated Somali officials could establish precedent for political clashes with the United Nation, with the country’s national security adviser warned the UN to stop ‘interference in internal affairs’.
“Do not interfere in the internal affairs of Somalia…this attitude is unwelcome!.” said Abdisaid M. Ali, writing on Twitter in replying to the statement by the UNSOM, the UN’s mission for Somalia.
UNSOM is yet to comment on the warning by the official which comes amid recent complaints by Somali officials over perceived interfere by the UN in matters related to the country’s federal states.
According to Nicholas Haysom, the UN envoy for Somalia, there is a real need to set the precedent for credible and peaceful electoral processes in the regional election and called on all stakeholders to collaborate in ensuring a positive outcome.
Mr.Haysom’s statement comes following the resignation of the Southwest’s long-serving powerful president Sharif Hassan Sheikh Aden who has also pulled out of his presidential race Wednesday, just days before the region holds the much-awaited election.
Aden who had been in power since 2014 has announced his resignation in Baidoa and declined to give further details despite reports that he was under pressure by the government which could have prompted him to resign.
His resignation followed days of speculations that he was contemplating to quit after the region’s electoral commissioners including the chairman have resigned from their posts in a surprise move that observers said preceded a political ploy by Mr. Sharif to delay the election in the face of pressing challenges by allied rival candidates who are reportedly vying to unseat him.
The resignation of the former Somali parliament speaker also brought a sigh of relief for the central government which considered him as a political threat due to his political influence within the opposition regional states’ bloc which is locked in a tough political challenge with the government of which he played a key role.
According to analysts, his departure had also dealt a blow to the opposition regional states and will make it easier for the government to install its own favorite leader into the region which is expected to elect a new leader in a few weeks.
He had been involved in the Southwest’s politics since it was re-established as a Federal Member State of Somalia in 2009.
Critics accused of him of ruling with iron fist and bribery, prompting demands for a new era of change with the need for more accountable and transparent leader.