Polling stations opened across Somaliland this morning as thousands lined up for the crucial exercise which is a first for many since they were born.
President Muse Bihi cast his vote in the capital Hargeisa as opposition leaders also did the same in their respective constituencies.
The vote which is first since 2005 has attracted global attention with many countries and organisations sending in monitors and observers.
Political party leaders rallied their supporters to turn out for the exercise.
Speaking after casting his vote, President Bihi called for peace and order noting the whole world was watching the process.
“Voting for peace is too important in this elections. The world is watching us this morning. If you have watched the major radio stations all over the world, they are on their way to Somaliland,” the two time president said.
Waddani party leader Abdirahman Irro sounded up beat noting the elections were a victory for Somaliland.
“I am pleased today that in the joint election of the House of Representatives and the local council, I freely voted for the two candidates I have chosen from the candidates of the Republic of Somaliland,” said Irro
“I say to the people of Somaliland, this is a great victory for Somaliland. Let everyone vote.”
Slightly over one million people registered to vote according to the national elections commission, SLNEC.
Over 500 candidates are contesting for the 82 seats in the House of Representatives.