Chaos erupts in North Western of Somalia parliament months after elections

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HARGEISA, Somalia – Drama dominated Somaliland’s parliament for most of the day on Monday with MPs from competing rival political parties, during a rare meeting in the breakaway region of Somalia, which claims to be independent from Mogadishu.

According to local media, the chaos was sparked by the recent announcement by the government of President Muse Bihi Abdi that his administration will continue to register more political parties ahead of the presidential election.

Reports indicate that opposition parties led by Abdirahman Irro’s Wadani party and UCID party opposed the amendment tabled Sunday by Information Minister Saleban Ali Koore allowing the registration of new political parties.

The Information Minister, a senior government official whose term ends in 2022, said Bihi had “honored the people’s wish” to allow the registration of new political parties.

In this secessionist region, only three parties; The UCID, Waddani and the ruling Kulmiye are authorized by law to exist. The Three Parties clashed as the region pushes for democratization while pushing for international recognition.

But the Bihi administration is pushing for the law on political parties to be amended to allow the registration of more parties. It was not immediately clear why the opposition rejected the move, but calm has returned.

In May this year, North Western of Somaliaheld legislative and local elections which saw the opposition, the Kulmiye party, take the floor. The Wadani and UCID parties won 52 parliamentary seats out of the 83 available.

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