Somaliland, an unrecognized region of Somalia is proving that democracy can prevail everywhere.

When I was a teenager, I used to wonder what people meant democracy. I grew up in a place where the rule of law wasn’t encouraged but as I entered middle school, I had my teacher explain it on the black board, yes a board attached to the wall but I still hadn’t understood what that meant, it’s because practically we never exercised democracy in a day. Democracy as it sounded, the teacher listed down a bunch of indicators on the board, among others elections, demonstrations and people’s freedoms. All of these were missing in our own rule and for most of our class, democracy was a very strange term. We thought that by learning all the things that make up democracy, it was something belonging to Greece and only Greeks would do it better. It’s been a long time ago, almost 15 years ago. However as we explored more into the world we lived and became familiar with the nature of democracy, our understanding of law has changed. Laws of which democracy never permitted. Today when I know democracy and it’s work, there’s still much to wonder about. It’s because even today democratic nations are turning into dictators.

So how democracy became effective in one of the world’s smallest unrecognized regions, perhaps the most dangerous part of the planet according to the media?

For anyone other than Somali, Somaliland May sound a bit foreign to them. Some if not many of you have pictures of Somalia in your mind, I’m guessing that all the bad things in this world have already poured into your mind which is what everyone has consumed from the media. Media is so powerful that it can virtually change our thoughts even when we haven’t figured out the truth yet. Theoretically Somaliland is a self-proclaimed region in northern parts of Somalia. It officially broke away from Somalia in 1990 after a disastrous war between the powerful south and north. Since then Somaliland began to stand on its own, have its own government and administration. It’s 30 years old now and the region is still able to thrive without the support of many countries. However Somaliland had amused the world for their role in exercising democracy. They periodically hold their elections peacefully and democratically, follow international rules of law and function as a government. Unlike Somalia, Somaliland is entirely peaceful Want to read my previous blog on Somaliland It will help learn more about the region.

How did elections in the region happen?

Last night, Somaliland had concluded its local and regional 2021 parliamentary elections. According to the Somaliland election commission, 1.1 million people have been registered to vote in this election with over 3 thousand voting stations. Biometrics registrations helped reduce any sort of corruption that would’ve happened in the process. international observers from EU and AU have come to monitor the election. In less than a week, voters have decided their MPs who will represent them in the House of Parliament. In Africa, elections often end up in violence. Post-election disputes cause more civilian casualties and displacements. Somaliland had shown the true color of democracy by successfully conducting an election with such shortage of support and logistics. Many countries have praised the region for the successful completion of the election. In Hargeisa, the largest city in Somaliland, people express hope in today’s election. Even though Somalis share power by clan system, one man who’s from the lowest and most neglected group of Somaliland called Barkhad Batun won the second most counted votes in the city of Hargeisa. This alone proved that clan based power sharing systems are disappearing.

Candidates set up their own billboards in Hargeisa
Crowd waiting for the final result of the election in front of the election commission headquarter

I think Somaliland, despite being one of the few unrecognized regions in the world, is a good example that democracy isn’t about size or type of leadership rather simply being consistent with the values of democracy alone. I typed this short article pretty quickly but I hope it sheds light on what the world’s most ignored region is like. Today I hit 50 on my WordPress site. The 50th article since creating my blog in 2018. It’s a new milestone of writing for me and I’m more than happy that I’m growing and learning more. If you like my blog, please help me reach more audiences who may like to see and hear something they only hear and know through the media. Thank you and have a great weekend!

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