UN: The Future of Somalia Hangs in the Balance Amid Ongoing Challenges


MOGADISHU, Somalia - The United Nations maintains Puntland is a key player in the progression of federalism, noting that the state has made milestones in the stabilization process of the Horn of Africa nation, which is fighting for stability.

On Saturday, Puntland, the oldest state of the Federal Republic of Somalia, cut ties with the government in Mogadishu after Parliament approved changes to the provisional constitution. The changes effectively affect the government structure.

Catriona Laing, the UN official representative of the United Nations Secretary-General, discussed at length with President Said Abdullahi Deni the changes in the provisional constitution during her visit to the state.

About the vote by the Federal parliament and the statement issued by the government of Puntland, she took note of the concerns of both sides on some substantive elements and also around the process.

"I was very pleased to hear from the president that he is committed to try and find a way through this to ensure that dialogue can continue with the federal government to ensure that there is an inclusive process and the whole country can come together to ensure that eventually the constitution at the federal level defines and ensures that the individual federal member states have their autonomy within that and can play their part,” said the UN official

Ms. Laing thanked President Deni for being open to finding solutions to the current impasse.

"The future of Somalia is at stake. The country, which has so much potential can't move forward without the full and inclusive participation of Puntland," said Ms. Laing. "And we, the UN, through my good offices, we are here to help find a way through this, "said the UN official.

During her visit, the fourth to Puntland since she took office in 2023, Ms. Laing also met with UN staff working in Puntland to discuss the humanitarian and development-related support activities being carried out by the UN agencies, funds, and programs.

Puntland has openly opposed changes in the constitution while calling for broader consultations among all stakeholders. The changes would see Somalis vote for president during elections, a shift from the previous model in which MPs elected the president.


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