This week, Somalia presidential electoral committee cleared 24 candidates to vie for the top seat barely a week to poll.
Twenty of Somalia’s presidential candidates have double citizenship a matter which could raise questions of loyalty though the Presidential Election Committee (PEC) had earlier it was a question on legibility.
The PEC announced this past week it had cleared 24 candidates for the February 8 ending several false starts since September last year when President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud’s term ended.
Out of the 24 candidates, 83% hold foreign passports including the current two presidential candidates who led the country for the last eight years.
The outgoing president Hassan Sheikh Mohamud who is educationist has Kenyan passport making him to have same nationally with his predecessor, Sheikh Shariif Sheikh Ahmed.
Though the Provisional Constitution of Somalia upholds the double citizenship, the Citizenship law which is still in force is unequivocal on citizenship of candidates running for the top office.
The Citizenship Law 1960 articulates that Presidential candidateshould be a Muslim c whose father and mother are both original citizens.
Thirty percent of the candidates are Nationals of United State followed by United Kingdom and Canada with each four presidential candidates.
Kenyan and Djibouti are represented by two candidates each with Australia having one.
The candidates with foreign passports include incumbent President Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud (Kenya), Prime Minister Omar AbdirashidSharmarke (Canada), former transitional federal government president Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed (Kenya) and former transitional federal government PM Mohamed AbdullahiFarmaajo (USA), Mohamud Mohamed Ulusow (USA) and AbdikadirOsoble Ali (USA)
Others include former Puntland president Abdurahman Mohamed Farole (Australia), former Mogadishu mayor Mohamed Ahmed Nur (UK), AbdinasirAbdulle Mohamed (USA) Jibril Ibrahim Abdulle (Canada), Mohamed Abdirisack (USA), Abdullahi Ali Ahmed (USA), Mohamed Yasiin Ismail ( Djibouti), AbdirahmanAbdishakur ( UK), Ali Haji Warsame ( UK), Abdullahi Ali Hassan (Djibouti), Saeed IseWarsame (USA) and former ambassador to Kenya Mohamed Ali Nur (USA).
Only four of the twenty four candidates running to win the country’s top seat have Somali citizenship.
BashiirRagheShiiraar, Said Abdullahi Deni, Ahmed Mohamed Abdi and Mohamed Ahmed Jabar have one citizenship (Somali).