The United Nations Special Envoy for Somalia, ambassador James Swan addressed the UN Security Council meeting on Monday.
The e-conference was also attended by Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble who briefed the council on the recent progress undertaken by his administration towards the realization of free and fair polls.
On his part ambassador Swan also updated the members on the tangible political, economic, social, and humanitarian aspects achieved by the horn of the African nation through the support of the international partners led by the UN agencies.
On much-anticipated polls, ambassador Swan said an electoral process to choose the parliament and president is on the right path so far before February next year.
“When I last addressed this Council in August, the Somali leadership was meeting to agree on a plan for the 2020/21 elections. In September, they reached consensus on an indirect electoral model, ending a two-year political stalemate between the Federal Government and the Federal Member States.”
He said dialogue is however needed to address the concerns of the opposition leaders who are worried about the members of the election committee while strengthening peace and stability in the country.
“Political dialogue is also key to addressing other pressing priorities, including operations against Al Shabaab, economic and security reforms, and collaboration to tackle the multiple humanitarian challenges facing the country. We encourage political actors to institutionalize this dialogue among leaders, such as through the newly formed National Consultative Forum.
In the security sector, the UN envoy confirmed that despite persistent hit and run attacks by the armed group al Shabaab in major cities the wellbeing of the civilians remains a top priority for both Somali security forces and AU peacekeepers.
“I pay tribute to the Somali security forces and the African Union Mission in Somalia for their steadfast and courageous pursuit of peace and stability in Somalia. We also welcome the continuing support and commitment from the many Member States to the development of Somalia’s rule of law and security sector. It is through collective gains in the security realm that space is created for the political process, governance, and institution-building.”
He commended the swift response by the Somali health workers in curving the COVID-19 graph despite other immense challenges posed by recurrent floods and locust infestation
“Humanitarian needs remain acute in Somalia. The country has been hard hit by the triple-shock of COVID-19, flooding, and locust infestation. The national trends in COVID-19 cases are broadly favorable, but we must remain vigilant. I again commend Somali authorities for their rapid response to COVID-19’s outbreak and thank Somali health workers who are on the frontlines to defeat the pandemic.”