Policy Project VOTE Somalia

The stalled Somalia 2021 elections have the potential to worsen Somalia’s protracted conflict. The inability of the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) to hold a secure and legitimate election is worsening clan divides and providing Al-Shabaab an opportunity to advance its position in the southern region of Somalia, which presents a significant risk of further regional destabilization. Though Somalia has shown modest human development gains and economic growth over recent years, election-instigated violence risks undoing these improvements. Moreover, a credible election is a necessary step in mitigating the protracted conflict that Somalia has experienced since the 1990s. Accordingly, V.O.T.E Somalia (Verified, Observed & Trusted Elections – Somalia) is a low-cost, low-risk, and high-reward project designed to support Somalia in holding its overdue 2021 election. This project proposal addresses the logistics of the project design, pre-project risk assessment, operational decisions, and post-project impact. In collaboration with Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and CANADEM, the project aims to facilitate fair, transparent, robust, and sustainable elections for years to come.