Federal Police in Hiiraan have ordered residents inside after several protests by locals in recent days against the perceived lack of representation in the ongoing election negotiations in Jowhar.
Security forces cancelled a planned protest in Beledweyne as clan elders assemble in the Hirshabelle capital to select regional MPS who will, in turn, elect the state President.
Speaking to HOL from Mogadishu, regional governor Ali Jeyte Osman said that he was caught off-guard by the sudden cancellation of the planned protest.
“Before I left for Mogadishu, I saw the preparations for the demonstration underway, so I was surprised to find out when I landed that security officials were blocking it.”
He told HOL that he supports the people in Beledweyne to express their opinions safely and that the authorities do not have the right to stop them from demonstrating.
The blocked protests come as a delegation headed by the new federal Minister of Interior – who himself hails from Beledweyne – along with federal MPs who represent the region and the regional President to discuss regional elections.
Jeyte believes that the federal government may have ordered the protests to be cancelled.