The Vision 2016 Conference was held in Mogadishu from 2-6 September 2013 in which the President of the Federal Republic of Somalia, His Excellency Hassan Sheikh Mohamud called for the first of many national dialogues on the transition towards democratic legitimacy.
The national conference gathered national experts, regional authorities; religious leaders; Somali scholars, professional groups, women and youth groups; to help produce a general framework for advancing the Somali political process for the Federal Government (FG). The framework will enhance the progress made thus far by the FG in the Somali political process and ensure the realization of a peaceful, free and fair national referendum by the year 2016.
The key objective of the conference was to ensure the constitutional review and implementation process, together with the process of transitioning to democratic legitimacy is Somali-owned.
His Excellency Hassan Sheikh called for national dialogue on political processes and requested the delegates to offer concrete proposals and recommendations that can be translated into policies that will contribute towards the review and implementation of the Provisional Constitution, the transition to democratic legitimacy, and the finalization of the Constitution by way of a referendum.
The national conference began a conversation and a national dialogue on concrete questions of federalism, democratization and constitutional review focusing on the following three main goals:
- Strategies for effective implementation/realization for a process towards political inclusivity and charting a way forward for democratic governance system.
- Strategies for the federal parliament to complete the provisional constitution and suggestions for insuring widespread public and stakeholder support;
- Strategies on the type of federal system and structure that is suitable and practical for Somalia.
The Conference recognized that the roadmap laid out in the Provisional Constitution provides concrete steps towards these objectives.
The Conference recalled the priorities outlined in the New Deal Compact for Somalia, which include advancing inclusive political dialogue, finalizing and adopting the Federal Constitution by December 2015, and preparing for and holding credible elections by 2016.
The Conference expressed concern that the government is behind on important political milestones.
The Conference acknowledged that there are areas of textual ambiguity in the Provisional Constitution that need to reviewed and revised.
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