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When flames of fire is extinguished, there are still remnants of live hot pieces of firewood simmering beneath the ashes. Similarly, in Mogadishu there are heavily armed clan militia in the quarters of Kaaraan, Circolo Ufficiale and elsewhere in the City and surrounding areas. They are ready to be activated for violence at short notice. Alshabab is engaged in not only co-governing Mogadishu, but also control large swathes of territory in the entire South-Central Somalia. The local and Central governments have no exclusive possession of arms and instruments of power, and in an election environment this poses serious security challenges. The diplomatic niceties and smiles among Mogadishu presidential candidates will fade away soon, adding more security problems in towns.

Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Rooble has acquired now higher political profile following his successful leadership in bringing opposing parties together in this Summit between FGS and FMS. If he has political ambitions, I believe he will choose one of two options: Supporting one presidential candidate from Darood camp to keep his current job, or move his name forward among presidential candidates. In the first option, observers believe that Rooble will support Farmajo’s candidacy amid absence of apparent other electable presidential candidates among the Daroods. Somalis say, “in the pains of labour, a woman has no choice in privacy. The plans of Rooble in this election will be exposed soon in the next few weeks. However, whatever he decides, this would be interpreted as a collective stand of Sacad/Habargidir. Either way, his political choice, apart from remaining a neutral technocrat, would add more tension to an already dynamic and volatile political atmosphere in Mogadishu and beyond.

Team Nabad iyo Nolool didn’t give up yet to re-run. But, this time around, their chance in re-electing Farmajo lies in the divisions and disunity of opposition leaders, especially among Hawiye presidential candidates, which is likely to happen as election campaigns heat up.

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