National Constituent Assembly reaches Day 6
Mogadishu, (SDN) The National Constituent Assembly continues to unfold
smoothly as 825 Somali citizens from all walks of life discuss and debate the draft Somali
The formal opening of the National Constituent Assembly took place on Wednesday, July
25, representing a significant milestone in the path towards a new constitution for the
Somali people. On Day 1, the delegates were addressed by the President, the Speaker and
the Prime Minister of the Transitional Federal Government, amongst other notable
personalities and speakers. Somali musicians and actors were able to contribute their
artistic talents as well. The opening ceremony was attended by diplomats including United
Nations Special Representative of the Secretary General, Dr. Augustine Mahiga and
ambassadors from Djibouti, League of Arab States, Turkey, Ethiopia, IGAD, and the African
Union, amongst others.
On the second and third days, the delegates reviewed the rules of procedure, the entire
constitutional process and the task lying ahead of them. Also, the constitution was read by
eminent Somali personalities.
On Days 4, 5 and 6 of the National Constituent Assembly, the delegates were separated into
10 thematic breakout groups, made up of approximately 80 delegates each, to facilitate
debate and discussion. The delegates have been vigorously debating the provisions of the
draft constitution, in some cases making recommendations of changes to be delivered to
the new parliament.
The National Constituent Assembly will continue for another three days – on Day 8, the
delegates will vote on adoption. A positive vote from the National Constituent Assembly
will turn the draft into the Provisional Constitution of Somalia. It will remain provisional
until the government can organize a national referendum to give each Somali man and
woman the opportunity to vote on the Somali constitution.
The National Constituent Assembly has been visited on Sunday July 29 by Prime Minister
Abdiweli Mohamed Ali, as well as numerous ministers, who have commended the
delegates and all the teams for their hard work and dedication and for their contribution to
the Somali future. Today, the Norwegian representative to Somalia Jann-Peter Holtedahl
addressed the plenary session, extending his country’s good wishes and highlighting the
historic nature of this assembly.