By: Yusuf M Hasan
BADAN (Somalilandsun) – The Somalia administrative region of Puntland has agreed to deter from further attempts of conducting its local council elections in areas under the jurisdiction of Somaliland.
This was revealed by the Somaliland minister of defence Mr Ahmed Haji Adami at a press briefing in Badan town of East Sanaag region where he is leading a government delegation.
“Following telephone conversations Puntland officials have agreed to deter from further attempts of conducting their local council elections in the east of Sanaag region “Said minister Adami
The Puntland authorities have in the last couple of months been involved in incursions to districts in East Sanaag like Badan and Lasqorey with intent to conduct election campaigns as a [prelude to actually holding the council elections slated for the 15th July 2013.
According to the defence minister the authorities in Puntland agreed to deter from further incursions after a clear warning of dire repercussions was put through on phone.
The Somaliland government has in the past acted swiftly in removal of political agitators from the administrative region of Somalia government from Garowe.
The defence minister whose delegation includes senior administration officials from Hargeisa urged Puntland to respect the territorial boundaries of Somaliland which has conducted several elections without infringing on areas under the jurisdiction of its parent country Somalia.
The saga of Puntland attempting to hold its elections in east Sanaag, which are the first since the administrative region was established 2 decades back, have received swift action from the somaliland Army and other security apparatus supported by area residents.
A few days back The Somaliland army confiscated six ballot boxes brought secretly to Badan and Las qoray towns by agents of Garowe based election body
According to Colonel Yasin Osman Salah ‘Gurei’ who is the commander of the army’s 3rd Brigade based in Badan town the intercept , capture of Puntland election officials and subsequent confiscation of the ballot boxes at Eelbu was as a result of the vigilance of area residents.
Although the small pockets of support to the Puntland designs within local communities was ended mid last year following broad based area leaders and citizens meetings the Puntland authorities have not given up thus remain determined to make a political presence during the elections as a sign of jurisdictional authority.
A declaration that ensued from a clan meeting, informed Puntland that East Sanaag residents is not only geographically situated within the boundaries of Somaliland but owe their allegiance to the government in Hargeisa.
The area residents whose clan meeting ensued with an elders visit to Hargeisa where they denounced any further connections with Puntland during a meeting with President Silanyo also publicly declared their allegiance to the republic of Somaliland.
At the clan meeting held in the Hagaftimo town the residents of Badan District in February 2012 asked Puntland to keep away thus cease arming and sending militias to destabilize security in East Sanaag region districts.
“The Garowe administration should stop laying claim to our clan whose allegiance and geographical location is in the Republic of Somaliland- Chief Mohamed Said Abdi following a clan meeting in February.
On the last week of June a group of political agitators from Garowe intent on holding a political rally in Badan were ejected from the town by an army unit under the personal command of Colonel ‘Gurei’.
The Puntland team that arrived late on the evening of 24th June were forcefully evicted from the hotel they had booked for lodgings and rally venue by the Somaliland Army unit whose headquarter is in Badan town of Sanaag region.
According to Chief Mohamed Said Abdi the territorial claims of East Sanaag and Sool Regions by the Somalia regional administration of Puntland has resulted in untold sufferings for residents who miss out on public services and development projects from Somaliland.
In February this year 3 people were left dead and scores injured after Clashes with Farole political Supporters turned gruesome in the East Sanaag where a party led by the president of the Somalia administrative region of Puntland Abdirahman Farole were denied entry into Badan town where they were intent on opening offices for the Horseed party of Farole.
After being asked to leave in peace the Farole supporters who upon being denied permission by district officials turned violent thus confrontation with area residents that resulted in the escape of the Puntland group minus three of their dead.
According to Hasan Ali Yey a resident of Hargeisa the Somaliland administration needs to urgently take punitive steps thus curtail the territorial expansion sickness permeating from Puntland.