GOOBJOOG NEWS|MOGADISHU: The much-awaited round of talks between Prime Minister Mohamed Roble and Federal Member presidents opened in Mogadishu Saturday amid hopes for a concrete deal as it emerges most of the contentious issues have been iron out.
A technical team from the federal and regional governments have trashed out most of the thorny issues paving way for an easy ride by the FGS and FMS leaders, sources close to the talks have told Goobjoog News.
According to the sources, the committee has provided two options on the Gedo issue which had been one of the most fought out between outgoing president Mohamed Farmaajo and Jubbaland leader Ahmed Madobe. The committee advised that the elections in Jubbaland be within the purview and control of the state government.
The first option is to reduce the number of polling stations to one meaning the elections will be held in Kismayo only unlike in the September 2020 deal which provided for Gerbaharey in Gedo and Kismayo. Federal troops based in the Gedo region have been a source of tension between Farmaajo and Madobe.
On the security of the elections, the committee has tasked the responsibility to federal and regional police with the support of Amisom.
The committee also eased frictions over the Somaliland issue deviating from the position of the previous technical committee which has proposed the matter be dealt with jointly by Senate Speaker Abdi Hashi and Deputy Prime Minister Mahdi Guled.
In the new arrangement, leaders from Somaliland will have the full mandate of choosing their own electoral teams.
Finally, on the issue of the interim federal elections committee, PM Roble has indicated he will be selecting a new team in consultation with the opposition. The opposition had accused Farmaajo of parking the now-defunct team with cronies, senior government officials and intelligence officials.