Puntland Government Severs Ties with Federal Government of Somalia Over New Constitution

Published: March 31, 2024

Garowe, Puntland – In an extraordinary meeting held today in Garowe, the capital of Puntland, the regional government has announced it is severing relations with Somalia’s federal government in Mogadishu.

This drastic move comes after the federal government councils voted yesterday to repeal the provisional constitution approved in 2012 and replace it with a new constitution.

The Puntland leadership has repeatedly warned that such an action undermining the federal system would harm national unity and stability. They cite several legal provisions allowing Puntland to reconsider its integration with the central government under such circumstances.

Based on Article 142 of the now-defunct provisional constitution, the preexisting regional authorities retained their powers until harmonization with the federal laws. The Puntland constitution’s Article 4 also provides Puntland the right to revisit unity with a central government departing from the agreed federal model.

In a statement, the Puntland government declared:

  1. It has lost recognition and trust in the federal government institutions until a comprehensive, agreed-upon constitutional system emerges that includes Puntland.
  2. Per its constitution, Puntland will exercise powers as a complete, independent government as long as the federal system remains unimplemented through mutual agreement.
  3. The actions of President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud in replacing the provisional constitution have nullified his constitutional mandate as president.
  4. Puntland will only cooperate with entities upholding the 2012 provisional constitution.
  5. Puntland will negotiate directly with the international community on matters of regional interest.
  6. This decision will be presented to the Puntland Parliament.

The extraordinary annulment of relations represents a stern rebuke of Mogadishu’s unilateral actions and a potential Crisis for efforts to unite Somalia under a federal framework after decades of conflict. International mediation may be required to resolve the high-stakes constitutional crisis.


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