For the fifth time since 2000, Somalia is searching for an electoral model that advances the country’s democratic process.

This is both a cause for celebration and a cringe-worthy setback.

Discourse around electoral models indicates that the country is unfailingly pursuing a democratic path in a region where autocracy dominates body politics.

At the same time, Somalia has consistently failed to shed a clan-based political dispensation and leap into universal suffrage once and for all.

That is especially true for a country with democratic traditions going back to independence in 1960.

In fact, the country’s first president, Aden Abdulle Osman, was also the first African president to lose — and concede defeat – in an African presidential election.

President Osman rejected calls by his political base to remain in power for the sole purpose of deepening a nascent democracy.

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