The Second Deputy Speaker of the Somali Lower House Parliament, Abdullahi Omar Abshirow, explained the Somali government’s decision to withdraw from the IPU Presidential election held in Angola on Friday, even though a candidate representing the Somali parliament attended the election.
The Second Deputy Speaker, who led the Somali parliamentary delegation at the election in Luanda, Angola, told the media that Somalia and Tanzania had reached an agreement regarding Somalia to relinquish the IPU seat to Tanzania, and in return, Tanzania would assist Somalia in joining the East African Community and securing another seat in the United Nations.
The Second Deputy Speaker added that Somalia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a letter in August expressing Somalia’s support for Tanzania in its bid for the International Parliamentary Union (IPU) presidency.
“I can confirm that the Somali candidate agreed with us to relinquish that seat. Subsequently, the Speaker issued a letter that is now public knowledge, in which he announced Marwa’s withdrawal from the race. She was aware of the Somali parliament’s decision.” he added.
However, Marwa Abdi Bashir insisted that she was unaware of the letter issued by Parliament Speaker Sheikh Aden Mohamed Noor Madobe, in which he declared Somalia’s withdrawal from the election. She expressed her regret over the parliament’s decision.
Abshirow explained that Somalia’s decision to give up the International Parliamentary Union (IPU) President seat was in the interest of obtaining other seats with the support of African countries, including Tanzania.
The election featured four female candidates from African nations: Ms. Adji Diarra Mergane Kanouté from Senegal, Ms. Catherine Gotani Hara from Malawi, Ms. Tulia Ackson from the United Republic of Tanzania, and Ms. Marwa Abdi Bashir Hagi from Somalia.
Speaker of Tanzania’s National Assembly, Tulia Ackson, was elected on Friday as the President of the International Parliamentary Union (IPU), succeeding Portugal’s Duarte Pacheco. The Somali candidate received 11 votes and finished in fourth place.