6 November 2018

Somalia: Sharif Hassan in Focus As South West Polls Thrown Into Dissaray With the Resignation of Polls Commission

Serious questions are been asked on whether the November 17 South West State regional presidential elections will take place as scheduled after the election commission resigned en masse on Tuesday.

In a video statement the Chairman of South West Electoral Commission Arfe Ibrahim Aden cited "interference" by the Federal government as the reason for his resignation and that of his deputy and 15 members of the polls body.

Aden accused the Farmaajo government of bribing Mps from the region and "strangling" the electoral process.

Regional leader Sharif Hassan Adan who is contesting in the election is alleged to be behind the resignation according to analysts in a move to delay elections and extend his tenure as the South West President.

"Mps have been travelling to Mogadishu back and forth collecting bribes from the federal government to support certain candidates" Chairman Adan said.

Although Villa Somalia has not accepted or denied the claims of supporting particular candidates, it is believed that former NISA chief Hussein Hassan and State Minister for Trade Abdulaziz Laftagaren enjoy strong support from the office of the President and that of the Prime Minister respectively as possible replacement of the incumbent Sharif Hassan Adan.

Sharif Adan has had a political lifespan going back to at least 16 years but analyst say this former Speaker of the National Assembly is causing a crisis as he senses an end to his reign in this region and in Somali politics.

Sharif who is said to nurture ambitions to one day lead Somalia is the man behind the 2010 resignation of Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo as the Prime Minister.

Some analysts claim Farmaajo may still be harbouring animosity towards Sharif following the 2010 Kampala Accord that saw the former forced to resign.

"Shariif is a politician. I do not support the guy but this political move even the best of us couldn't predict. This simply means extention of his reign over SW politics at least for the foreseeable future" Muhy Said commented.

The crisis has hit Sharif's cabinet with the sacking of regional state minister for sports who allegedly verbally accused the South West leader at a press conference.

Among the candidates vying for the is former Alshabaab number two Mukhtar Robow.

From being a Speaker to Finance Minister to South west leader Sharif has whirled power to become the most influential politician from the Digil Mirifle. Will this election usher an end to his political era?

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