For the first time in a quarter century, the Somaliland national election commission-NEC has managed to register voters in all parts of Sool region in the east of the country.
Accord no to the state minister for Eastern regions reconcile action and Development Abdirashid Hussein Abdile Gargar results of the first phase indicate that a large number of residents have already been registered in preparation for Somaliland presidential and parliamentary elections slated for March 2017.
“I congratulate both residents of Sool region and NEC for apt registration activities,” the minister told star tv during an interview in Hargeisa where he also urged residents yet to register to take advantage of the just begun phase two exercise being undertaken all over the region.
On the issue of talks between the administration and Khatumoist secessionists geared towards peaceful reconciliation of existing political differences that were initiated last month by members of the group who aspire to a Khatumo state of Somalia presumably to be curved off from east Sanaag and entire Sool regions of Somaliland.
“Negotiations are on course as arranged between the two sides following the first tentative meeting in Ainabo town,” said Minister Gargar while urging all leaders from Sool region to participate in the meeting called by Somaliland president Ahmed Mahmud Silanyo in Burao town Toghdeer region.
In the meantime the ongoing voter registration in Sool region which is a preamble to actual participation by residents in Forthcoming elections in Somaliland as a warlike activity by Abdilahi Gaas the president of Puntland, a Somalia administrative region to the east of Hargeisa.
Speaking to reporters in Garowe town, Abdilahi Gaas that Residents of Sool, Sanaag and Buhoodle regions of Somaliland should be burdened with activities that are neither of importance nor interest to them.
Adding that his administration pursues peaceful relations with neighbours, Gaas who claims the eastern parts of Somaliland as part of his jurisdiction in lieu of the predominance of Dulbahante and Warsengeli clans that together with his Majeerten one make up the wider Harti tribe, wants the Somaliland election commission to desist from any activities in the said areas.
“The ongoing voter registration in Sool region is contrary to good neighborliness and shall be countered with all means at our disposal” said Gaas in repeat of warnings that failed to take effect in Sanaag region during a similar NEC exercise that ended successfully after incursions by troops from Puntland were repulsed by Somaliland security forces with heavy casualties to the invaders.