Somalia: Leaders Fail to Agree on Agenda for Crucial Elections Meeting

Somalia’s leaders have failed to agree on the main agenda for a crucial electoral meeting, reflecting the unattended fissures between them.

Publicly, they promised to try again on Tuesday, even as the country becomes sorely late on elections initially planned for February this year.

The agenda-setting meeting brought together President Mohamed Farmaajo and leaders of the five Federal Member States (FMS) plus the Governor of Benadir region, the metropolis of Mogadishu.

The five are Said Abdulahi Deni of Puntland, Ahmed Abdi Qoorqoor of Galmudug, Abdiaziz Hassan Laftagareen of South West, Ahmed Mohamed Islam Madobe of Jubaland and Ali Gudlawe Hussein of Hirshabelle.

Others in the meeting at the ‘Big Tent,’ a large makeshift structure inside the heavily-guarded airport perimeter were Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble and the Mayor of Mogadishu, Omar Mohamed Filish.

The talks opened by President Farmaajo on Sunday afternoon ooked to be at an ‘initial groundwork’ stage, as parties still harboured mistrust for each other.

This gathering was just the first time in three weeks that all federal state presidents attended, even though they all arrived in Mogadishu three weeks ago.

Amicable solution

Puntland and Jubaland leaders had initially accused Farmaajo of twisting the agenda for his benefit. On Sunday though, Villa Somalia, the official residence of Farmaajo, said the President was keen on an amicable solution.