The United Nations had reported that Aweys turned himself in to pro-government officials after a fallout with al-Shabaab's leader but the elders told the BBC he was in Galmudug region with his militia, seeking refuge from his own men.
Parliamentarians and elders flew to the town where Aweys is staying to encourage him to negotiate with the government, the Shabelle Media Network said.
The elders said their efforts had failed.
Aweys left al-Shabaab territory last week after factions within the group began clashing.
Al-Shabaab is fighting to create an Islamic state in Somalia and is linked to al-Qaida.
Aweys has been on a U.S. list of people linked to terrorism since 2001, the BBC said.