Former Somali president Hassan Sheikh Mohamud was on Sunday re-elected as head of state of the East African country.
The 66-year-old politician prevailed against 35 candidates in the election for the country’s highest office, including the incumbent president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo, who had replaced Mohamud in power in February 2017.
Parliamentary and presidential elections were long overdue in Somalia, where Farmajo’s term expired in February 2021, but elections earlier this year were postponed due to a political impasse over electoral regulations.
Amid fierce criticism, Farmajo extended his term in office as a result, causing tensions and clashes between supporters of different political factions.
Somalia has been plagued with violence at the hands of Islamist terrorist group al-Shabaab for years.
The militants, who control vast swathes of territory in the south and center of the country, frequently target the country’s security forces as well as civilians.
Security forces in Mogadishu have been on high alert in the days leading up to the election, and there has even been a curfew in force in the capital.
The president is elected in an indirect vote by the 275 members of parliament and 54 representatives of the Senate.