Mogadishu, Somalia | Xinhua | The Somalian parliament on Sunday chose Hassan Sheikh Mohamud as the country’s new president in a third-round runoff in an election that has been delayed for over a year.
The 67-year-old Mohamud, former Somalian president in 2012-2017, won 214 votes from lawmakers, defeating incumbent President Mohamed Farmajo, who garnered 110 votes. Mohamud was immediately sworn in after the vote.
Born in Hiran region in central Somalia, Mohamud graduated from the Somali National University in 1981 and obtained a master’s degree from Bhopal University in India. As an academic as well as a civic activist, he worked for several national and international organizations.
Farmajo, who was seeking a third term in office, has conceded his defeat.
A total of 328 lawmakers, including 274 legislators from the Lower House and 54 Senators, cast a ballot, putting an end to the long-overdue electoral process in the country.
The presidential election was held 15 months behind schedule as the COVID-19 epidemic, severe drought, insecurity and differences among Somali leaders postponed the parliamentary elections to April.
Sunday’s vote was held at a heavily guarded airport hangar in the capital Mogadishu, amid threats from the al-Shabab terrorist group. Police had imposed a curfew and a no-fly zone in the city to prevent attacks by a militant group which has been fighting to overthrow the government.