Puntland, the semi-autonomous northern region of Somalia, elected the new President on Tuesday. In the third round of voting in the region’s parliament, Mr Said Abdullahi Deni emerged as the winner, beating 20 other candidates. He was a former Minister of Planning and challenged the Somali Presidency in 2017, which was won by President Mohamed Abdullahi ” Farmajo. ” Mr Deni won 35 votes in the Tuesday poll, followed by former intelligence chief Mr Asad Osman Abdullahi, who received 31 votes. The two former Minister of Finance, Farah Ali Shire, received only three votes in the second round. In the first round of voting all the other candidates, including President Abdiweli Ali Gaas, lost. Mr Deni takes over the administration of Gaas rocked by charges of graft, nepotism and insecurity. Until 2023, he will lead the region. The five regions of Somalia–Puntland, Galmudug, Hirshabelle, Jubaland and the South West–held presidential elections gradually from November to the end of 2019. In November, the South West State went to the polls. After Puntland, Hirshabelle is next. Puntland, an oil-rich state, has yet to achieve universal suffrage, although it became semi-autonomous in 1998. The region is also often involved in territorial conflicts with Somaliland ‘s self-declared republic.