Garowe(Mogadishu24)-The President of Puntland State in Somalia, Said Abdullahi Deni, has on Tuesday appointed members of the Puntland Electoral Commission responsible for overseeing the State’s election issues and activities.

The committee consists of three members: Abdillahi Sa’eed Keyton, Mohamed Abshir Garad, and Mahmoud Soofe Hassan, who are believed to be officials from the Presidential office.

The newly appointed Puntland Election Committee members will assume their roles immediately, following the president’s approval.

“The appointed members of the Puntland Electoral Committee will assume their roles starting from today, August 15, 2023, following the president’s approval,” states the presidential decree.

Opposition parties have expressed deep concerns that these appointments could exacerbate the political stalemate in the State.

The opposition politicians argue that the newly appointed election committee are close affiliates to President Deni and are working within his office as presidential staff.

This appointments comes one month after the Puntland State parliament passed constitutional amendments that faced strong resistance from the Puntland Politicians Forum.

The electoral stalemate in Puntland and the President’s decisions which seemed to politically favour his re-election bid, has led to unrest, conflicts, and increased tensions in Garowe.

Puntland State is preparing for its first-ever democratic presidential elections under the “one person, one vote” system on January 8, 2024.

Reports from Garowe, the administrative capital say President, Deni travelled to Ethiopia and then to Emirates for undetailed trip so far.

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