AU congratulates the people of Somalia on the inauguration of the tenth Federal Parliament

Mogadishu, 27 December 2016 – The Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (SRCC) for Somalia, Ambassador Francisco Caetano Madeira, congratulates the Federal Government of Somalia, the regional states and the people of Somalia, upon a key milestone reached today, on the inauguration of the 10th Somalia Federal Parliament.

This is a critical step in the country’s journey to political stability and democratisation, as Somalia re-establishes long lasting state institutions critical for good governance.

“The inauguration of the new Parliament today is not only symbolic of the progress that Somalia is making but also attests to what is achievable when people choose unity in diversity, agree to compromise for the common good and with determination agree to pull together to fight the enemies of peace and stability in Somalia,” said Ambassador Madeira.

The AU Special Representative commends the Somali National Security Forces as well as AMISOM troops and police, whose commitment and sacrifice have enabled an environment for successful completion of the electoral process cycle.

Ambassador Madeira further noted that the progress made in 2016 the increase of the number of electoral delegates comprising the Electoral College, in comparison to 2012 election, allowing for wider participation of the Somali public including the women, youth and minorities is critical in preparation for 2020-planned universal suffrage.

“The new Federal Parliament of Somalia has incorporated the clan system but also the geographic diversity of the country. The establishment of an Upper House with representatives from the emerging federal member states for the very first time since Garowe Agreement of 2012, an increase from 135 elders that selected the 275 Members of Parliament in 2012 to an electoral college of over 14,000 delegates, and increased female representation from 14% in 2012 Federal Parliament to now 24% in the current two-chamber Federal Parliament is a huge qualitative and quantitative improvement, laying a strong foundation for universal suffrage come 2020. The African Union is pleased to play a critical role in Somalia’s journey to democracy,” said Ambassador Madeira.

He appealed to members of the 10th Somalia Federal Parliament to utilize their term to contribute towards the country’s journey to attainment of lasting peace and stability through development of a legal framework that will ensure sustainable peace, stability and economic development.

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