News / Africa

More Than 200 Approved for New Somali Parliament

Augustine Mahiga, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General for Somalia and head of the U.N. Political Office in Somalia (UNPOS), looks on during a news conference in Mogadishu August 19, 2012, in this photograph released by the AfricAugustine Mahiga, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General for Somalia and head of the U.N. Political Office in Somalia (UNPOS), looks on during a news conference in Mogadishu August 19, 2012, in this photograph released by the Afric
x
Augustine Mahiga, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General for Somalia and head of the U.N. Political Office in Somalia (UNPOS), looks on during a news conference in Mogadishu August 19, 2012, in this photograph released by the Afric
Augustine Mahiga, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General for Somalia and head of the U.N. Political Office in Somalia (UNPOS), looks on during a news conference in Mogadishu August 19, 2012, in this photograph released by the Afric
MOGADISHU — The United Nations and members of the diplomatic community say they are satisfied with the progress made so far by Somalia's political leaders and elders as they face an August 20 deadline to end the transitional government and elect a new president. Somalia's Technical Selection Committee, which is screening members for a new parliament, approved 215 new lawmakers on Sunday. 
 
On the eve of the expected inauguration of Somalia's new parliament, representatives of the African Union, the U.N. and the international community reaffirmed their support for political leaders and elders who have worked hard for the past eight years to form a permanent government.  
 
Speaking at a base near the airport in Mogadishu Sunday, the United Nations Special Representative for Somalia, Augustine Mahiga, said the steps in implementing the road map to end Somalia’s transitional government have been achieved. 
 
“Working with all mathematical procession to tomorrow's date of the 20th I think the deadline to get this machinery of the last very last step has been achieved, we cannot say we have missed. At least 20th of August we are witnessing the beginning of the process of getting a government which can only take days," he said. 
 
Alexander Rondos, the European Union special envoy to the Horn of Africa, also welcomed the progress being made to form a stable government.
 
“Despite significant challenges, the process has endured and it has also ensured the selection of elders, the convening of the National Constituent Assembly, and the adoption of the Provisional Constitution through a representative and transparent process taking place inside Somalia for the first time in 20 years," he said. 
 
Somali political leaders were supposed to install a new government with an elected president by Monday - which marks the end of the U.N. mandate for the current Transitional Federal Government. Instead, a new parliament is expected to be inaugurated on that date.
 
According to Mr. Mahiga, the parliament members will elect the oldest member present as interim speaker.  
 
So far, the Technical Selection Committee has rejected more than 60 selected potential legislators because of their involvement in Somalia’s civil war.
 
Somalia’s transitional parliament has been characterized by political bickering, but Mahiga says this new parliament will be different.
 
“You need to look at the list, that in the list of the parliamentarians there are new faces, there are also old faces, but it’s going to be collectively a different parliament than anything you have witnessed before and certainly the beginning of legitimate, representative and accountable institutions which has never happened in 21 years of Somali crisis," he said. 
 
Earlier this month the Somali constituent assembly passed a new provisional constitution. Mahiga says the new parliament will vote for a new president in the coming days.  
 

You May Like

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends More

Audio Top 5 Songs for Week Ending May 23

This week's lineup can be summed up like this: 'It's The Same Old Song' - but they're great songs - featuring Walk The Moon, The Weeknd, Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmakingi
X
Bernard Shusman
May 24, 2015 2:55 PM
According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.
Video

Video Scientists Testing Space Propulsion by Light

Can the sun - the heart of our solar system - power a spacecraft to the edge of our solar system? The answer may come from a just-launched small satellite designed to test the efficiency of solar sail propulsion. Once deployed, its large sail will catch the so-called solar wind and slowly reach what scientists hope to be substantial speed. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video FIFA Trains Somali Referees

As stability returns to the once lawless nation of Somalia, the world football governing body, FIFA, is helping to rebuild the country’s sport sector by training referees as well as its young footballers. Abdulaziz Billow has more from Mogadishu.
Video

Video With US Child Obesity Rates on the Rise, Program Promotes Health Eating

In its fifth year, FoodCorps puts more than 180 young Americans into 500 schools across the United States, where they focus on teaching students about nutrition, engaging them with hands-on activities, and improving their access to healthy foods whether in the cafeteria or the greater community. Aru Pande has more.
Video

Video Virginia Neighborhood Draws People to Nostalgic Main Street

In the U.S., people used to grow up in small towns with a main street lined by family-owned shops and restaurants. Today, however, many main streets are worn down and empty because shoppers have been lured away by shopping malls. But in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia, main street is thriving. VOA’s Deborah Block reports it has a nostalgic feel with its small restaurants and unique stores.
Video

Video Effort Underway to Limit Damage from California Oil Spill

Cleanup crews are working around the clock to remove oil from the waters off the coastal city of Santa Barbara, in California. About 380,000 liters of oil may have leaked out before a rupture in an onshore, underground pipeline was discovered Tuesday. The environmental disaster hit the popular West Coast resort area before the Memorial Day weekend. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports investigators have yet to determine what caused the incident.

VOA Blogs