War-Torn Somalia to Choose New President on Oct. 30

  • Clans to select members of parliament who will pick president
  • Incumbent Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud among candidates for post

Somalia lawmakers will choose a new president on Oct. 30, a further step in rebuilding the Horn of Africa nation after decades of civil war destroyed the economy.

Delegates representing Somalia’s clans will on Sept. 25 choose 56 lawmakers for an upper house of parliament and 275 on Oct. 10 for a lower house, Omar Mohamed Abdulle, chairman of the National Leadership Forum, told reporters Sunday in the capital, Mogadishu. The lower house will later that month select the new president from dozens of candidates, including incumbent Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud. Abdulle was correcting a statement from the forum that had included the wrong dates. 

Somalia’s leaders aren’t selected by popular vote because the electoral commission doesn’t have the capacity to conduct a nationwide poll, Mohamoud said in February. Mohamoud was himself chosen in a ballot by lawmakers in September 2012.

Somalia has been embroiled in civil war since the ousting of dictator Mohamed Siad Barre in 1991 and its institutions have largely collapsed. Mohamoud has sought to attract investors as the army, supported by African Union forces, pushes back al-Qaeda-linked militants from the country’s main urban areas.

(Authorities correct dates they previously gave for election, starting from first paragraph.)
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