Garowe, 11 February 2016 – An international delegation concluded a three-day visit to the federal member state of Puntland today. The delegation consisted of the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Somalia, Michael Keating, and senior representatives of the African Union, the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development, the European Union, Ethiopia, Italy, Sweden, Uganda, the United States, and the United Kingdom.
During their stay, the delegation met with Puntland President Abdiweli Mohamed Ali “Gaas”, members of his cabinet, the Speaker and Members of the Puntland parliament, traditional leaders and civil society representatives, among others.
The delegation welcomed the important role played by the state’s political leaders and their exceptional contribution to the emergence of a federal, united Somalia.
Puntland representatives voiced their concerns about the recent decision of the Federal Government of Somalia on the electoral model to be implemented later this year.
Members of the international delegation acknowledged that the electoral model for 2016 is not perfect but said that if conducted fairly and transparently, it does represent a step forward on the road to inclusive one-person one-vote elections by 2020.
International partners reaffirmed the need to move beyond clan-based representation and to advance the democratization process in Somalia. They pledged to support a political roadmap which meets Somali expectations towards this goal.
The members of the delegation acknowledged the progress that Puntland has made to advancing political stability and security and its contribution to the emergence of a federal Somalia. They said they will continue to support Somalia in this important political transition and in the wider peacebuilding and state-building process.