Remarks by the UN Special Representative for Somalia, James Swan, to the media in Galmudug
Good Afternoon, Mr. President and members of the press.
President Ahmed Abdi Kariye and your team, I wish to thank you for the warm reception extended to us today.
I am undertaking today’s visit to Dhusamareb together with the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission and Head of AMISOM Ambassador Francisco Madeira, EU Deputy Head of Delegation to Somalia Nicole Miller, and IGAD Representative Nur Abdi Isse.
As you are aware, at the end of National Consultative Council Conference on 27 May, Somali leaders reached an agreement outlining implementation modalities for the 17 September 2020 Agreement. This is an important milestone of the consultative process that started last July here in Dhusamareb.
The 27 May Agreement was a result of productive engagement between the Federal Member state leaders and the Federal Government, in consultation with other key political actors. We now encourage Somali leaders to sustain this momentum, and to move forward with preparations for the holding of elections. In this regard, we urge Somali leaders to continue with regular meetings of the National Consultative Council to drive this process forward.
During our meeting with President Kariye, we discussed the next steps in implementing the 27 May communique. We also spoke of the importance of ensuring electoral security arrangements are in place, and welcomed Somali security forces’ efforts in fighting Al Shabab in Galmudug. It is imperative that the Galmudug administration, security forces and local communities work together to make the elections happen in a safe and secure environment.
We reiterated the need for every necessary step to be taken to implement the women’s 30 per cent quota in the elections of both Houses of parliament.
During the meeting, we also underscored the importance of promoting dialogue at all levels. We acknowledged both the progress and challenges of local reconciliation efforts and informed the President of our commitment to the Government and people of Galmudug to build on the progress made in the state.
Mr. President, once again we are very grateful for the warm reception. We will remain engaged with you and your team, and will support your efforts to facilitate the holding of credible and peaceful elections in Somalia.