Somaliland: US Envoy to Somalia to Discuss Expedited Elections in Hargeisa

US envoy to Somalia Donald Yamamoto with president Muse Bihi at the Somaliland presidency in Hargeisa- file photo

Somalilandsun –  The government united states of America is to dispatch a high level diplomatic mission to Hargeisa in the near future.

The team led by US envoy to Somalia Ambassador Donald Yamamoto is according to Geeska Afrika sources has the aim of enticing the Somaliland government and opposition parties to accede sentiments expressed by the international community as pertains the oft postponed parliamentary and local council elections.

Following a visit in November this year The international partners in a joint statement expressed concern over the decision to extend the terms for both Lower and Upper House to 2022 and 2023 respectively.

The partners said both Houses, established to represent the women and men of Somaliland, have been sitting for a period much too long by any democratic standards. Adding that “We are concerned that events have significantly undermined these commitments to the detriment of Somaliland’s democratic credentials and international standing,” said the partners which included the EU, UN, the US and the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) among others.

The partners said there is the need for an electoral commission that inspires broad trust from all political actors as well as from the citizens of Somaliland. The partners said local councils have been operating without a democratic mandate since April.

Ambassador Yamamoto and his team are said to be intent on having both the government and opposition political parties expedite the postponed elections for mid-2020 more so by agreeing on an election commission acceptable to all

President Donald J. Trump nominated Donald Yamamoto as the United States Ambassador to Somalia. Mr. Yamamoto was appointed on October 19, 2018.

If the reports of the visit come to fruition, this will be the second trip to Somaliland by Amb Yamamoto whose maiden visit to Hargeisa wads in April 2019