Somaliland National Electoral Commission upheld the decision taken by Somaliland House of Representatives which said that the forthcoming local council elections will be held without voter registration. The Commission announced that they will abide by the decision made by Somaliland parliament. The spokesman for Somaliland National Electoral commission Mr. Mohamed Hirsi Geele held briefing to local media in at his office in Hargeisa.
Mr. Geele told the press the reasons attributed in declaring the voter registration null and void. He further pointed out that grave errors arise when it comes to the previous voter registration resulting that many people without registration.
He added that donors informed the commission that it became rather difficult for them to get the funds necessary for conducting speedy registration, therefore it was preferred that local council election will kick off as planned without voter registration.
Speaking on this issue, the spokesman said, “voter registration has been prepare of contention for those who run the elections and those who elected and it still continues to create controversy.
We spoke to donors and they told us after spenting tremendous amount of funds to the previous voter registration they will not be able to deliver this time around. We cannot afford to conduct speedy registration due to lack of funds. New plan is about to be implemented which says that people should be registered rather than registering the voters.
As for this plan, the young and the old should be registered. Those who are below sixteen years of age are not eligible to get registered. The plan is expected to take four years. In the meantime, an assessment is underway when it comes to the equipment if they are working properly or need them to be changed. Once this is achieved, the funds will be searched.”
The spokesman welcomed the decision made by the parliament and speaking on this, he said, “we do not reserve the right to reverse the decision of declaring the previous voter registration null and void but it is the duty of Somaliland parliament.
The issue is both for the Commission, the government and the parliament to work out solution and it is that the forthcoming local council elections will be held without prior voter registration.
It has got its problems and challenges and our biggest fear is the double voting to occur again.
Finally, we will be banking on Somaliland people to avoid when it comes to double voting.”