Garowe, Puntland, Somalia –
Several Puntland politicians have taken the Puntland government to the Supreme Court for attempting to amend the Constitution. The politicians are led by the former Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS), Ahmed Isse Awad.
The politicians voiced their concerns and objections regarding the Puntland government’s plans to alter the existing constitutional provisions. They claim it would be unlawful and could pose a threat to national security. In June, Puntland’s regional parliament voted to consider amendments to the Constitution, immediately triggering clashes in Garowe, the State’s capital.
Preventing contentious amendments to the Puntland Constitution to maintain peace and stability was also recommended by former Somali leaders, who recently concluded their negotiations in Garowe. Although the statesmen expressed their support for direct elections in Puntland, they suggested temporarily suspending the controversial amendments instead of modifying the Constitution itself.
The discussion surrounding the opening of the Constitution for potential amendments has already witnessed dramatic side events. In June, the opposition Aran Jaan militia clashed with Puntland’s security forces and urged traditional elders and politicians to prevent constitutional amendments. However, the group has been widely condemned for resorting to violence for the sake of accomplishing political goals.