Expanding public participation in political processes in Somalia

This study explores the prospects and challenges for public participation in politics in Somalia. It aims to identify how Somali authorities, civil society, international actors and other stakeholders can contribute to increasing the participation of ordinary Somalis in the political processes in their country. To that end, politicians, a range of non-governmental actors and the wider citizenry were interviewed for this report. The report also analyses and assesses historical processes (such as the National Leaders Forum, NLF), along with the challenges citizens encountered when they sought to participate in policymaking, in order to explore avenues to increase citizen participation in political processes. Finally, despite a post-independence history of elites dominating the formulation of Somali governance structures and the selection political representatives, there are some success stories. The study seeks to learn from these. This includes, for example, the process used to establish the Puntland autonomous administration in 1998 and hold subsequent presidential elections, which has resulted in relative political stability in the region.

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