Research and Publications

THE CHALLENGES OF DEMOCRATISATION
PROCESS IN SOMALILAND: THE WAY FORWARD

The purpose of this briefing is to provide essential information regarding the challenges facing the democratisation process of Somaliland and to recommend steps to be taken to address challenges and learn from past lessons. There are key moments in history that define the process and needs to be revisited to understand the challenges Somaliland is encountering to advance its democratic credentials. The inability to hold elections periodically as required by the constitution and international standards is questioning both the internal legitimacy and Somaliland’s international credentials as a new democratic partner seeking international recognition. Constant extension of terms and postponement of elections marred the country’s democratic credentials. The wrong turn was taken in 2007/2008, the second phase of the election cycle. After approval of the constitution in 2001, Somaliland has taken bold steps by holding three consecutive elections in 2002, 2003 and 2005 for local councils, presidential and House of Representatives, respectively. The second phase that was planned to start in 2007 failed. The country descended into an era of stalemate, and political enigma

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