Sunday, July 04, 2010

Opposition candidate wins presidential vote in Somaliland

Somalilanders went to the polls on 26th of June and elected an opposition party candidate, Ahmed Mohamud Silanyo of the Kulmiye party, to be their next president. The incumbent president, Dahir Riyale Kahin, which came in a distant second, has promised to honor the result.

If this comes to fruition and Mr. Kahin hands the reigns of power to Mr. Silanyo, then we are at the cusp of witnessing history being made in the Horn of Africa, namely the first peaceful transfer of power from a ruling party to an opposition party. What a tremendous accomplishment for Somaliland this could turn out to be!

This golden opportunity to put Somaliland in the spotlight could be a waisted opportunity if Mr. Silanyo fails to deliver. I hope he will listen to voices such as Soyan Guled's and other moderate voices, and I wish him best of luck -- he needs all the luck he can get in that dangerous corner of the world.

On a sour note, the Woyane regime that did all it can under the sun to prevent the Ethiopian people from freely expressing their hopes and wishes in the election held just six weeks ago has sent its praise for the outgoing president, Mr. Kahin, for "his high sense of obligation to the people of Somaliland." Strange, isn't it?