Garowe(Mogadishu24)-Puntland State President, Said Abdullahi Deni, held a conference with leaders of the Political Parties on Saturday to discuss the disputed one-person-one-vote election system.

A press statement indicated that the leaders discussed the acceleration of one-person-one-vote elections for the House of Representatives, President, and Local Councils in the remaining three districts of the Nugal region: Garowe, Dangoroyo, and Godobjiran.

“President Said Abdullahi Deni convened a meeting with the leaders of political parties in Puntland State to discuss elections in the region. They also explored ways to expedite the democratic elections under the one-person-one-vote system for the President, House of Representatives, and Local Councils in the remaining districts of Garowe, Dangoroyo, and Godobjiran,” the statement reads.

The conference was attended by representatives from the administration led by the president, as well as leaders and officials of Political Parties such as SINCAD, IFIYE, RUNCAD, MUSTAQBAL, KAAH, and SHAQALAHA.

Speaking to the media after the conference, the president reiterated that his administration is ready to meet with opposition parties to discuss the implementation of relevant electoral laws through dialogue.

“We are ready to engage those with different opinions through dialogue and negotiations to implement the administration’s laws and amendments. This demonstrates that the government, together with political parties, is ready to hold discussions with the opposition and conduct democratic elections,” President Deni said.

President Deni called for calm and peaceful coexistence between the communities living in Garowe and its environs. He pledged that government forces won’t take any actions that may harm the public.

The opposition politicians are yet to comment on the recent appointment by the President, although they have publicly opposed the one-person-one-vote elections.

The conference came a week after President Said Abdullahi Deni appointed a seven-member committee for negotiations on electoral issues amid escalated tensions between the government and opposition politicians.

The appointment comes a week after he declared his readiness to engage with opposition politicians and discuss reaching resolutions on electoral affairs.

However, it was followed by tensions, including military movements in Garowe City, leading to the displacement of several families.

Somalia’s international partners have expressed grave concerns and called for calm and peaceful dialogue between the president and the opposition.

This developments came hours after Britain’s ambassador to Somalia, Mike Nithavrianakis’ visit to Garowe, and held talks with Puntland State President, Deni and other parts.

“In Garowe, I met a wide range of political associations and opposition. I listened to their suggestions for resolving disagreements on elections. Advancing the electoral process peacefully is crucial to stability in Puntland. This can only be achieved through dialogue”, Mike said.

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