Copyright © 2007 All rights reserved




(and incorporating

The aim of this website is to disseminate information about the Constitution and laws of the REPUBLIC OF SOMALILAND.  The full texts of the Constitution and some of the main laws are found here in English language, or in Somali, where no translation is currently available.  The site will also contain news of the constitutional and legal developments in Somaliland, as well as commentaries and articles. hopes to contribute, as far as possible, to the advancement of the Somaliland legal system, and the entrenchment of democracy and rule of law in Somaliland.  We will support, in particular, projects and initiatives aimed at improving Somaliland legislation, the legal system and legal education, and those which promote respect for the rule of law and the entrenchment of human rights. is  a not-for-profit, independent website. The texts and articles  provided here can be used for information but should not be reproduced,  without the express   permission of the website owners. All rights are reserved.

For all  enquiries and comments, please contact us at:

For any articles or news items relating to Somaliland law which contributors may wish to be considered for publication on this website, please contact:  Ibrahim Hashi Jama LL.B, LL.M,






 SOMALILAND ELECTORAL LAWS Handbook (264 pages) in English & Somali by Ibrahim Hashi Jama, available for free downloading  from the  Electoral Laws page. 


 Updated Pages:  Local Gov’t Law 2007.... Voter Registration Law & Amendments (Also now in English)..... Electoral Commission


The Somaliland Juvenile Justice Law (Law No: 36/2007)  has now come into force as from 21 April 2008: Somali text and an English language introduction.


The  Organisation of the Judiciary Law (Law no 24/03 & 06): This Bill was initially passed by the House of Representatives in 2003 and again in 2006  and was returned again   by the President. The President’s amendments were finally passed by the House, on 16 March 2008,  which could not muster the two thirds majority it required to push through the bill unscathed.  The Bill is now in force.


 House of Elders Resolution on 10/04/2008 extending the Presidential term by one year. 


Somaliland Voter Registration Law (Law No: 37/2007):  Somali text of the final law passed in July 2007 and, now, as updated in 2008.


Jamhuuriya Interview with editor before the Guurti

Term extension decision - Nabad xumid aan dalka ka jirini ma keeneyso Muddo kordhin distoori ah, laakin Muddo kordhin aan distoori aheyn ayaa nabad xumi dalka u keeneysa” -“Disorder that does not exist in the country will not bring about a constitutional term extension, but an unconstitutional term extension may lead to disorder”.

Somaliland Local Government Re-organisation through Presidential Decrees in an Election Year - An article (large pdf file) : 06/04/2008

Somaliland Cross-Party Parliamentary Group:  Formation (November 2007), Press Releases and visit to UK (February 2008)

New or Updated Pages:

Electoral Commission .... Electoral Laws .... Environmental Laws ...

Mining Laws


Courts of Law re-established in Las Anod, the Sool regional centre  31/12/2007


Somaliland National Human Rights Commission Bill submitted to the House by the Gov’t in November 2007:   Text in Somali         

Jamhuuriya (Online) interview setting out editor’s comments on this Bill: 06/01/2007  (in Somali)


The new Somaliland Press & Publications Bill 2007: Text & comments

( urges the Representatives to reject this Bill completely and recommends instead the adoption of eight steps to strengthen press independence) - Editorial on this Bill: 07/01/2008


Protests about Somaliland Government’s “take-over” of the Somaliland Human Rights Network - SHURO-Net



Notes of APD forum  on the Somaliland Constitution: facilitated by Mr Michael Walls in August 2007


The Delayed Release of the three QARAN Leaders: An article exploring Somaliland law relating to presidential powers of “pardon & amnesty” 23/09/2007  (Update: The politicians were released on 18/12/2007)

Election Law Amendments 2007 Commentary Comments on the Somaliland Presidential & Local Councils Elections (Amendment) Bill 2007. (Update: This Bill was rejected by the House of Elders and has now lapsed).

Politicians Arrested: The imprisonment of  the three leaders of a new Somaliland political association, QARAN, on 28 July 2007 has led to wide spread condemnation - see for example the Press Releases from:

  SHURO-NET              Somaliland Forum


Somaliland Presidential & Local Councils Elections (Amendment) Bill 2007-

Text in Somali .

Somaliland Lawyers Association (SOLLA) Call for the abolition of the extra-judicial powers of the Somaliland Security Committees: Communique 07/06/2007

Shuro-Net Statement on the legal challenge of the extra-judicial powers of the Security Committees (23/05/07)


Somaliland Media Law: A Concept Paper by Associate Dean, Adam Haji Ali Ahmed, of HARGEISA UNIVERSITY LAW FACULTY.


Launch of the Somaliland Freedom of Expression Fund (Art.32 Fund)


Campaign to abolish the extra-judicial activities of Somaliland Security Committees


The Sheikh Concordat – Settling Constitutional Disputes in the Somaliland Way?- Article by Ibrahim Hashi Jama written in December 2006 and published in the Somaliland Focus Bulletin (



Somaliland Constitution (updated annotation - May 2005)

Somaliland Courts of Law

Somaliland Legal News

SL Editorial 26/01/2007 Detaining Journalists on insult laws is an insult to Somaliland


SL Editorial (07/09/06)


Somaliland  House of Elders Elections Bill 

1. Direct Elections Bill  2006 new version

2. Indirect Elections  a) 2003 version

b) 2006 version

First Constitution of   Independent Somaliland in 1960

Somaliland Law No: 1 of 1960 and its fate

Suggested new Rules of the House of Reps: draft

House of Elders’ 2006 term extension controversy

Comment on Qaran & the law

published in the Somaliland Times

Somaliland Political Parties Law 2000





INTERNATIONAL RECOGNITION OF SOMALILAND:  A UNIQUE CASE -  See also selection of documents below:

 The case for Somaliland Recognition: Somaliland Government’s Published submissions:

2001 Booklet: Demand for Somaliland Recognition  (pdf file)

When is a state a state? the case for recognition of Somaliland: A.K.Eggers (2007), Boston College International & Comparative Law Review, Vol 30:211



Somalilanders’ submissions on recognition:

SNM Executive Committee Paper 2000

Somaliland Forum Submission 2001

Somaliland: On the Road to Independent Statehood? J. Peter Pham, Ph.D. 13/12/2007




The information and comments on the law in this website are provided free of charge for information purposes only.  Every reasonable effort is made to make the information and comments accurate and up to date, but no responsibility for their accuracy and correctness, or for any consequences of relying on them, is assumed by the author(s) or by the website owners/publishers.  The information and comments do not and are not intended to amount to legal advice to any person on a specific case or matter.


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Article32 Fund


“In order to adorn the twilight of his presidency with a success story in his self-proclaimed ‘War on Terror’, President Bush should implement a high-intensity, Fast Track policy for Somalia and Somaliland that pushes the former towards stability and rewards the latter for its significant achievements over the past decade. Fast tracking Somaliland recognition will send a shock wave to Somalia, and send a clear message that peace and prosperity can be rewarded without the need to use overpowering military force.”  Report of the SENLIS COUNCIL (Security & Development Policy Group) titled “Chronic Failures in the War of Terror - From Afghanistan to Somalia” 23 April 2008.