Somaliland Constitution





IN PURSUANCE of the resolutions of the Conference of the Somaliland Communities held in Burao on 27th April to 5th May 1991, which reaffirmed (our) independence with effect from 18th May 1991;

NOTING that the Conference of the Elders of the Somaliland Communities held in Borama from 24th January to 25th May 1993 adopted a National Charter[1] which:

–   laid down that a national constitution which will replace the national charter be prepared and consulted upon within a year; (and)

–   set out clearly the constitutional principles and the governmental structures, confident in their communities’ inalienable right to decide their destiny;

HAVING experienced the direconsequences of the application of a constitution not grounded on the nation’s beliefs, culture and aspirations, as was the case for a period of thirty years[2];

HAVING experienced the devastation wrought by a regime based on dictatorship and a policy of divide and ruleto which the country was subjected for over twenty years, and ever vigilant of the return of such a regime;

REMEMBERING the series of struggles waged by the people, such as that of the “Darawiish”[3], religious leaders and political parties;

MINDFUL of the vigorous campaign led by the patriotic organisation, the SNM[4], which culminated in the reassertion of (our) independence which was achieved through sacrifice of life and property so that the nation can enjoy a governmental system which meets its needs;

DESIROUS of a state which fulfils the aspirations of the nation, and is thereby appreciated by all, and which is founded on equality and justice;

RECOGNISING that lasting stability and peace can be achieved through a synergy between the economic system and the aspirations of the nation;

CONFIDENT that the Somaliland nation is a family that has everything in common, such as religion, culture, customs and language; and whose members are no different from each other and are ready to build together a state in which everyone has equal status;

AWARE that the preparation of the Constitution has gone through various stages and committees, such as the Constitution Working Party which was enjoined by the third Grand Conference on 26th November 1996[5] to sift through the two draft versions of the Constitution; and more recently, the corrections and amendments made by the two Houses of Parliament on 30th April 2000; and that the Constitution was based on the following issues:

a.   The Islamic Sharia.

b.   Conclusions from the various consultations.

c.   The separation of the powers of the state as between the legislative, the executive and the judiciary.

d.   The decentralisation of the administration of the government.

e.   Guarantees of private property rights and the protection of the free market.

f.    Sanctity of human life through the entrenchment of fundamental rights and individual freedoms.

g.   Peaceful and proper co-existence with the states in the region and world wide;

HAVING thoroughly considered the spirit and words of the preamble and the rest of the Constitution;

The people of Somaliland hereby approve and proclaim to the whole world on this 31st May, 2001[6], that this constitution has been adopted as the nation’s Constitution

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