Monday, November 13, 2017

Somaliland votes in presidential election

(BBC)- Polls have opened in the self-declared republic of Somaliland in the presidential election.
The election will use an iris-based biometric voting system - a world first, according to the election spokesman.

Just over 700,000 voters are eligible to take part in the election which is being contested by three candidates.
At least 60 observers are in the country to monitor the poll.

One of the observers, Susan Mwape from Zambia, told the BBC that they will be monitoring all aspects of the election including the "technical competence of electoral commission staff."

Rashid Abdi, from the International Crisis Group, told the BBC's Newsday programme if Somaliland "pulls off another credible election" it will improve its push for independence.

He defended the government for blocking social media sites to prevent the spread of "fake news and misinformation" during the election period.

Somaliland declared independence after the overthrow of Somali military dictator Siad Barre in 1991.