PM to present electoral option to parliament as civil society questions integrity of poll process

The Prime Minister will today present the electoral option for the 2016 polls to Parliament following conclusion of talks by the National Leadership Forum early this month.

In it memorandum to parliament, the NLF which has been steering the process of selecting the electoral choice settled for the clan based 4.5 systems in election of members of the Lower House. Additionally, they proposed the 54 members of the Upper House will be elected by Federal Member State assemblies.

The manner and procedure of conducting the polls as agreed by NLF has however drawn sharp criticism from the civil society. A Mogadishu based policy think tank Heritage Institute for Policy Studies has lambasted the government for what it terms as machinations to manipulate the polls.

In a policy brief, HIPS has questioned the proposal to have a two tier electoral team from the Federal and State government level to oversee the polls.

Read: Government hand in August polls erodes integrity of the process- HIPS

The FEIT will be composed of 17 Members where Five (5) members will be appointed by the Federal Government and two (2) members appointed by each of existing/emerging Member States. On the other hand, SEIT will comprise of 11 members; Eight (8) members appointed by the Federal Member State and three (3) appointed by the Federal Government.

Federal Electoral Implementation Team, FEIT and a State-Level Electoral Implementation Team SEIT, will be in charge of the polls, said NLF.

The National Independent Electoral Commission will be tasked with technical issues such as ballot printing and preparation of poll centres. Vote counting, tabulation and announcement will be done jointly by the NIEC, the Federal Government and the Electoral Task Force.

Parliament will be expected to debate the proposals and come up with a final version officially paving the way for the 2016 elections. The election of the Upper House will take place in July and that of the Lower House in August. A joint sitting of both houses will convene in September to elect the president.

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