BAIDOA (SMN) – The overall security of Baidoa has been beefed up ahead of a planned reconciliation conference which failed to open on its deadline, the 5th of January 2023.
The city is expected to host the meeting in the coming days with distinguished guests, including former Southwest State president Sharif Hassan and ministers are set to attend.
The upcoming talks will seek a peaceful solution to the escalating political tension in Southwest State which sparked last month following the expiration of the president’s term.
The speaker of the lower house chamber of the Somali parliament Sheikh Aden Madobe called for the forum as he wants to resolve the crisis in his constituency through dialogue.
Abdulaziz Lafta-Garen, the president of Southwest State has extended his mandate by one more year after the green light of the regional assembly in Baidoa city two years ago.
Baidoa has seen clashes last month after security forces raided the residence of an opposition candidate, Mohamed Aden Farketi, who served as Federal finance minister.
The heavyweight political figures from Southwest State are camping in Mogadishu in an attempt to oust the current leader, who wants to stay in power beyond his 4-year term.
It’s unclear if the planned meeting will end the current gridlock over Lafta-Garen’s presidential term extension, which many see as “illegal and unconstitutional”.