Saturday March 18, 2017
London (HOL) - Representative from the Somaliland government including the Speaker of the Parliament, Abdirahman Mohamed Abdillahi, hosted an information and Q&A session at Chatham House in London on Wednesday. Mr. Abdillahi told the panel that the drought in Somaliland has crippled the government's ability to host credible elections in time due to widespread displacement. He said that people Somalilanders have moved to Puntland, Ethiopia and further south into Somalia.
Participants quizzed the government officials on pressing topics such as the role of the Guurti (elders), electoral reform, the ongoing drought, environment and it’s relationship with its neighbours.
He acknowledged that the international community is losing patience with Somaliland over repeated delays and said that Somaliland would work to reassure it’s donors that it’s electoral process has not been compromised.
The Speaker also said that his ruling party, Wadani is in support of women involvement and that he is open to supporting a quota for woman participation in politics. He added that he does not believe that the current constitution is not discriminatory to women; pointing to the fact that women throughout the world are underrepresented in Parliament.
Mr. Abdillahi took a defiant stance when talking about Somaliland’s sovereignty. When asked about the controversial DP world trade deal and plans for a military base in Berbera, the Speaker said that Somaliland has the right to negotiation deals with other countries on their behalf.