Over 70 Somali Legislators Unite Against President’s Unilateral Constitutional Plans

Published: March 20, 2024

Mogadishu, Somalia – In a significant development, more than 70 legislators from both houses of Somalia’s Federal Parliament have voiced strong opposition against President Hassan Shekh Mohamud intentions to unilaterally replace the country’s provisional constitution. The decision was taken during a crucial meeting held in Mogadishu on Monday, where members of parliament expressed their firm disapproval of the proposed move.

In a statement issued after the meeting, the legislators emphasized the constitutional significance as a social contract and underscored the necessity for public engagement. They stressed the pivotal role of civil society groups and all stakeholders in contributing their inputs freely to any constitutional amendments or replacements.

“The constitution is not just a legal document; it is a social contract that binds us all,” said Hon Mhoamed Ali Yusuf, a prominent member of the opposition. “Any attempt to replace it without proper consultation and due process would undermine the very foundations of our democracy.”

The parliamentarians criticized the actions of some of their colleagues, particularly those within the cabinet, who have been advocating for the replacement of the constitution without adhering to the required parliamentary procedures. They emphasized that such actions, including the reading and replacement of the constitution without the required quorum, violate the Bylaws of the country’s parliament.

Furthermore, communities across various regions of Somalia have expressed growing unease regarding the handling of the constitution review process. Critics have voiced their dissatisfaction with the lack of transparency and inclusivity in the ongoing discussions surrounding constitutional reforms.

The rejection of President Hassan Shekh Mohamud unilateral plans by a significant number of legislators underscores the deep divisions within Somalia’s political landscape regarding constitutional matters. It also highlights the importance of upholding democratic principles and ensuring the active participation of all stakeholders in shaping the country’s future.

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