- On 28 November, the people of Somaliland will go to the polls for the fifth time in the country’s 21 years as an independent State to vote in local council elections taking place across the country. The previous round of local council elections held ten years ago confirmed Somaliland’s emergence as a peaceful, democratic country in a region often associated with famine, war, terror and anarchy. Since then, the country has held parliamentary elections and two presidential elections, all of which were deemed free and fair by international observers—and which included the peaceful handing over of power from one president to another in 2010.
Tomorrow’s local elections are significant because they demonstrate how it is possible to build a democracy in Africa despite the legacy of civil war. With voting taking place from the westernmost regions of Somaliland’s borders with Ethiopia and Djibouti to the eastern regions of Sool and Sanaag, they also demonstrate the unity of a people committed to engaging in peaceful, democratic politics.
The Government and the people of the Republic of Somaliland are grateful to the many foreign governments, including several from Europe, that have supported election preparations such as the provision of advice and guidance to electoral officials, the training of election observers, and the updating of relevant legal frameworks. This support and investment speaks to the value the international community places on Somaliland as a guarantor of peace, stability and democracy in the region.
The government of Somaliland would also like to thank all of the international election observers present in our country during these elections for their efforts to ensure that the elections are conducted in a manner fully consistent with international standards.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Republic of Somaliland