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Statement Attributable to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Somalia
Saturday, May 05, 2012

The Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) for Somalia, Dr. Augustine Mahiga, sends his congratulations to the Somali people and to the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) on the inaugural convening of Traditional Elders in Mogadishu on 5 May 2012.

The Elders, representing the full spectrum of the Somalia society, will nominate and select the National Constituent Assembly and a new Parliament, paving the way for the end of the transitional period on 20 August 2012.

“This is a moment of optimism for all Somalis”, Ambassador Mahiga stated, emphasizing the paramount importance of ensuring that  “the processing of convening the Traditional Elders now in Mogadishu is accountable, legitimate, transparent, participatory, inclusive and, most importantly, Somali-led.”

“At the same time”, the SRSG continued, “the authenticity and credibility of those chosen will have a profound effect on the constitution-making process and the selection of the new legislative body. I call on all parties to ensure that this is done in a timely, consultative and efficient manner. This is an essential first step on a long path ahead, and it is critical that we get it right.” The SRSG stated.

“I encourage the elders to use this time before the convening of the Constituent Assembly to continue consulting among themselves to ensure general representation of their people. I urge them to give us the best representatives to both the Constituent Assembly and the Parliament. We from the United Nations and the international community will give our full support to this process for the successful ending of the transition and eventual lasting peace and stability to Somalia”, SRSG Mahiga went on to say.

The SRSG takes this opportunity to pay tribute to the great effort the TFG have put into the process organizing this important meeting, especially the mobilizing and transporting of the Elders from their localities countrywide to converge in Mogadishu.


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