Navigation
Suscribe
Menu Search Facebook Twitter
Search Close
Menu ALL SECTIONS
  • Capital Coahuila
  • Capital Hidalgo
  • Capital Jalisco
  • Capital Morelos
  • Capital Oaxaca
  • Capital Puebla
  • Capital Quintana Roo
  • Capital Querétaro
  • Capital Veracruz
  • Capital México
  • Capital Michoacán
  • Capital Mujer
  • Reporte Índigo
  • Estadio Deportes
  • The News
  • Efekto
  • Diario DF
  • Capital Edo. de Méx.
  • Green TV
  • Revista Cambio
Radio Capital
Pirata FM
Capital Máxima
Capital FM
Digital
Prensa
Radio
TV
X
Newsletter
Facebook Twitter
X Welcome! Subscribe to our newsletter and receive news, data, statistical and exclusive promotions for subscribers
World

Former Prime Minister, a U.S. Citizen, Wins Somalia Vote

Farmajo, who holds degrees from the State University of New York in Buffalo, was prime minister for eight months before leaving the post in 2011

Votes are counted in the first round of the presidential election in Mogadishu, Somalia Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2017, photo: AP/Farah Abdi Warsameh
2 months ago

MOGADISHU, Somalia — A former prime minister who holds dual Somali-U.S. citizenship was declared Somalia’s new president Wednesday, immediately taking the oath of office as the long-chaotic country moved toward its first fully functioning central government in a quarter-century.

Incumbent President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud conceded defeat after two rounds of voting, and former prime minister Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo was declared the new leader.

“History was made, we have taken this path to democracy, and now I want to congratulate Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo,” Mohamud said.

Map locates Mogadishu, Somalia. Photo: AP

Fears of attacks by extremist group al-Shabab limited the election to the lawmakers instead of the population at large. Members of the upper and lower houses of the legislature voted at a heavily guarded former air force base in the capital, Mogadishu, while a security lockdown closed the international airport.

Thousands of cheering Somalis quickly poured into the streets in jubilation, chanting the new president’s name. Cheering soldiers fired into the air. “Somalia will be another Somalia soon,” said Ahmed Ali, a police officer celebrating in the crowd.

Mohamud held a slight lead over Farmajo, 88 votes to 72, after the first round of 21 candidates, but Farmajo held a clear lead after the second round among the three candidates remaining.

“This victory represents the interest of the Somali people. This victory belongs to Somali people, and this is the beginning of the era of the unity, the democracy of Somalia and the beginning of the fight against corruption,” Farmajo said after taking the oath of office.

Farmajo, who holds degrees from the State University of New York in Buffalo, was prime minister for eight months before leaving the post in 2011. He had lived in the United States since 1985, when he was sent there with Somalia’s foreign affairs ministry.

In this Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2015 file photo, Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud talks to the reporters while visiting Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. Photo: AP/Kamran Jebreili

Somalia began to fall apart in 1991, when warlords ousted dictator Siad Barre and then turned on each other. Years of conflict and al-Shabab attacks, along with famine, left this Horn of Africa country of about 12 million people largely shattered.

Somalia’s instability landed it among the seven Muslim-majority countries affected by President Donald Trump’s executive order on immigration, even though its government has been an increasingly important partner for the U.S. military on counterterrorism efforts, including drone strikes against al-Shabab leaders.

The new president, Farmajo, can travel to the United States on his U.S. passport.

In a sign of the dangers that remain in Mogadishu, two mortar rounds fired by suspected extremists late Tuesday hit near the election venue. There were no public statements by al-Shabab on Wednesday.

While the international community pushed Somalia to hold the election as a symbol of strength, including the U.S. pouring in hundreds of millions of dollars in recent years for political and economic recovery, the vote was marred by reports of widespread corruption.

The legislators voting — 275 members of the lower legislative house and 54 senators — were selected by the country’s powerful, intricate network of clans. Weeks ago, a joint statement by the United Nations, the U.S., European Union and others warned of “egregious cases of abuse of the electoral process.”

Examples included violence, intimidation and men taking seats that had been reserved for female candidates, the joint statement said.

With reports of votes being sold for up to $30,000 apiece, “This is probably the most expensive election, per vote, in history,” the Mogadishu-based anti-corruption group Marqaati said in a report released Tuesday.

ABDI GULED

Comments Whatsapp Twitter Facebook Share
More From The News
Sports

Odd-Looking Ronaldo Bust Steals the Show ...

7 hours ago
World

Iraqi Officials: Suicide Truck Bombing K ...

7 hours ago
Business

U.S. Stock Indexes Close Mostly Higher; ...

7 hours ago
Mexico

Mexico's Governors Tap Investors in Chin ...

8 hours ago
Most Popular

At Least Five Demonstrations will Affect ...

By Notimex
Mexico

Chihuahua's Subsitute Deputy Hides out a ...

By The News
Mexico

Amparo in Response to the Gasolinazo

By Hortensia Gutiérrez
Mexico

Nayarit State Prosecutor Accused of Drug ...

By The News
Mexico

Peña Nieto Will Defend Latin America Int ...

By The News
Mexico