Garowe(Mogadishu24)-Puntland State President, Said Abdullahi Deni has on Tuesday made a statement about the recent amendments to the constitution, which were passed by the Parliament last week, as well as the opposition’s claims about extension of his term.

Speaking at Puntland’s 25th anniversary event in Garowe, the president denied the claims raised by the opposition parties and refuted any plans to extend his term. President Deni said that his administration has worked hard to hold the long awaited party elections,

“We have 5 months to go elections, and we should utilize this time to do something effective and work towards peaceful elections. The government and I are ready to hold elections on time. We have no desire to increase or extend term for anyone including myself as the president,” the President said.

“Because I am silent, doesn’t mean that I will do things contrary to the interests of the people. I am ready to participate in the elections which will be held on 8th January 2024.” He added.

He called on the political parties to nominate the members of the election committee, stating that he welcomes their views and opinions as well as criticism.

The President further congratulated Puntland’s House of Representatives for approving the constitutional amendments, involving changes to its electoral system.

The president’s address came barely a week after the Parliament approved several amendments to Puntland State’s constitution, which have met strong opposition from the Puntland Politicians Forum comprising of various politicians from the opposition parties, claiming that the President bribed the Parliament to approve the amendments which favour him.

“It is very unfortunate that the members of parliament were bribed to pass these amendments that favour the outgoing president. They were given money within the parliamentary building,” said Hassan Shire Abdi, Puntland State’s former minister of finance .

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

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