By Liban Ahmad
Jan. 17, 2011
Other reasons for the discontinuation of Puntland-TFG cooperation include failure on the part of the TFG to implement “ the 2009 Galka’ayo Accord and Memorandum of Understanding on Security Cooperation (12 April 2010), signed between the TFG and Puntland; the marginalization of Puntland from the international community’s initiatives and funding intended for the reconstruction and development of Somalia as a whole, including past and ongoing training of Somali security forces in countries like Uganda, Kenya, and Djibouti.”
Puntland administration is against the extension of TFG mandate but is in favor of a new reconciliation conference to be held in Puntland. All major reconciliation conferences out of which transitional administrations had emerged had been held outside Somalia. It is not clear how Puntland can succeed in persuading the international community, Somalia’s political and traditional leaders to back and attend such a conference in Puntland although Puntland hosted the 18th regional Football Tournament last year.
Puntland-TFG relations deteriorated after the appointment of Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed as prime last year. Puntland complained that its share in ministerial portfolios was “looted”.
TFG Minister of Information, Abdikarim Hassan Jama , in an interview with the VOA Somali Service, defended Puntland initiative to have its new anti-piracy force trained by Saracen International , the same company training security staff for the TFG, a sign that Puntland and TFG were warming up to each other before the split.
Since its inception in 2004 successive Transitional Federal Governments of Somalia have squandered legitimacy bestowed on them by the international community and local administrations such as Puntland. The TFG president Sharif Ahmed had an opportunity to lay out his vision of a federal Somalia. The question is: Have TFG myopia and Puntland impatience put the last nail on federalism project in Somalia? The political terrain in Somalia seems to be as desolate and forlorn as it was twenty years ago when the twenty-one year rule of military dictatorship was brought to an end by clan-based opposition groups with no plans and vision to change the political conditions for better.
Liban Ahmad is the editor of Somalia Research Report and a frequent contributor to terror free Somalia