By: Yusuf M Hasan
HARGEISA (Somalilandsun) – Some senior public servants are openly participating in political campaigns.
The National Election Commission-NEC has asked the president H.E Ahmed Mahmud Silanyo to act on some public figures overtly engaging in campaign activities on behalf of some political parties.
In a letter addressed to the head of state and signed by the chairperson of the election body commissioner Isse Yusuf Hamari requested for presidential assistance in reigning-in the errant public officials who are not only acting contrary to fair play but utilizing public property as well.
The reaction from NEC comes after a statement released by the elections ethics monitoring committee gave details of campaign activities undertaken by the said public officials who are barred from any participation by a recent presidential directive.
Those unveiled by the election ethics monitoring committee and their transgressions are:
1. The regional governors of Selel, Awdal, Gabile, Hawd, Odweine, Sarar, Sool and Sanaag who were all caught by media cameras addressing Kulmiye party campaign rallies and soliciting votes for the ruling party at respective regional freedom gardens.
2. Mr. Ramah the Sahil Regional Governor who informed media houses that he will not cower from campaigning for his favourite party.
3. Though the law does not bar mayors from participating in political campaign rallies, the mayors of Sayla, Borame, Baligubale, Salahle, Ainabo, and Erigavo have been caught on media cameras utilizing government vehicles and security during the campaigns for their respective parties.
4. The Manager of Somaliland Roads Authority-SRA and the executive director of the Somaliland National Aid Comission-Solnac caught on media cameras publicly addressing campaign rallies.
5. Various public officials are reported to have constrained some candidates from campaigning through arrests though conflicts to date have been solved amicably.
6. The display of a big billboard in Hargeisa that displays 25 candidates from various political parties who claim to the next council members for the city municipality. (the ethics committee says this act is tantamount to creation of animosities among candidates)
Though these are few of transgressions there are others that are yet to be forwarded especially utterances by senior politicians who claim that a certain are (Hargeisa) belongs to specific clans thus others should resign their candidacies.
As the campaigns are to end on 25th Nov three days prior to local council election dates on 28th November it is therefore imperative for the head of state to act expeditiously as pertains to the NEC request otherwise the conduct of free and fair elections shall be untenable.