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FGS minister, Puntland presidency clash over upcoming state elections

Thursday July 8, 2021

MOGADISHU (HOL) - Federal Minister of Planning Gamal Hassan and Puntland presidency have traded accusations over the upcoming elections in the easterly state.

Hassan, who hails from Puntland, lashed at President Abdullahi Deni on Wednesday, claiming he was bent on interfering with the upcoming state elections.

"As a Presidential Candidate Said Abdullahi Deni should recuse himself from all election-related issues and immediately stop meddling in the affairs of electoral technical committees. We can no longer silently watch the blatant disregard for democratic integrity by PL administration," Hassan charged in a tweet.

The outgoing federal minister also alleged Deni was delaying announcing his candidature in a bid "to gain influence & control over elections in Puntland, clan elders, representatives & parliamentary candidates have all expressed grave concern at the extent of manipulation, intimidation and meddling."'

 But in a swift rejoinder, presidential spokesman Jama Deperani dismissed the minister's assertion as tantamount to fanning violence in the state.

"Your tweet is no different from the past ones where you used this platform to incite violence and conflict in Puntland. Puntland is a 23yrs old state, having previously held elections at state and federal levels, some of which resulted single vote as the difference," Deperani said.

He accused Hassan of trying to tarnish the image of Puntland and its people.

Voter registration has been going in Puntland ahead of the expected one person one vote in the upcoming presidential and parliamentary elections.

Deni was elected to office in January 2019 for a four-year term.


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