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Elections boss Irro says L. House poll to start ‘soon’ as UN leads calls for speed up

Storyline:National News

GOOBJOOG NEWS|MOGADISHU: Federal Indirect Elections Team (FIET) chairman Mohamed Irro has announced that the long-awaited next Lower House elections will start ‘soon’ but did not reveal any timelines amid pressure from the country’s donors to expedite the process.

Irro told the media that preparations have been finalized and it is expected that the elections will begin in earnest in the coming weeks in the constituencies of the country’s regional administrations.

“Our election process has been dragging on for a long time, the prospects are good now, and we have promised the Heads of Administrations and Electoral Commissions that the House of the People elections will take place as soon as possible,” said Irro.

Irro also said that the towns of the regional administrations expected to hold the elections will deliver complete election materials, such as ballot papers, ballot boxes and other essential items.

His remarks came on the same day the international community expressed ‘concern’ over the delays in completing the second phase of the elections which entails the election of the 275 members of the Lower House.

“We urge national and Federal Member State leaders and election management bodies to advance quickly to complete inclusive and credible House of the People elections before the end of 2021, respecting the 30 per cent minimum quota for women,” the foreign missions said in a joint statement.

Somaliland started the process last week with two seats but the Dispute Resolution Committee has since suspended the election of Deputy Prime Minister Mahdi Guled following complaints by former MP Hussein Isse.

The Somaliland State Indirect Elections Team (SIET) has not released any election schedule.