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Somali president vows to restore political stability if re-elected

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Somali president Hassan Sheikh Mahmoud has outlined his top priorities if the country’s parliament grants him another term, in presidential polls to be held on February 8.

In an interview with VOA, the leader vowed to focus on establishing security and political stability if he is re-elected.

The 62 year old former academic and activist from the Hawiye clan said he wants to “complete unfinished business.”

“Security was our first priority and it still remains our first priority, he said. We will end the threat coming from anti-peace elements and we will lay foundations for reliable security agencies in the country.”

Analysts however say that Mahmoud faces a tough challenge ahead. He has been criticised by other candidates for failing to implement his election promises especially those pertaining to security, as the country continues to face numerous al-Shabaab attacks.

Somalia’s presidential race is a crowded affair as 23 other candidates including former president, Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, are hoping to be elected.

A 329 member parliament will vote for the president in an election that has already been postponed four times, due to allegations of corruption.

A candidate must get two-thirds of the votes to win outright in the first round, but observers think a firs-round victory for any of the candidates is highly unlikely.

[Source: All Africa]

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