Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Somali PM: Donors must deliver on promises

                                                           Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed, prime minister of Somalia

Mogadishu, Somalia - A country whose very name is almost enough of an introduction, Somalia's reputation of unfathomable violence and desperate poverty is known around the world. In decades of civil war, it has been described as a "failed state" - a lawless home to gangs of pirates and murderers who terrorise those too impoverished to flee to foreign lands.
But there is more, so much more, to this land and these people than tales of fear and terror. While no one in this country below the age of 30 has any memory of functioning state institutions - police, schools or garbage disposal - this is a nation that has never given up on the dream of peace and stability.
Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed is an economist from southern Somalia. When civil war broke out here in 1991, he sought refuge in Canada, where he became a widely respected analyst for the Bank of Canada, OPEC, and assorted UN agencies.
He had no political experience when, in December 2013, it was announced he would be taking the reins of the east African nation as its new prime minister. He spoke with Al Jazeera's James Brownsell about his priorities for the country, development, infrastructure - and donors who don't make good on their promises.
Al Jazeera: You've been in this role since December. You're getting a feel for it, you're settling in - what do you wish to accomplish during your term in office?
Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed: Well, we want to accomplish our "Vision 2016", which consists of three milestones. The first milestone is to have the federal states formed; Somalia's constitution is that of a federal country. The second is to have the constitution reviewed - and that people vote to accept the revised constitution. And the third is to prepare the country for elections.
But as we are doing this, the security conditions must allow this to happen - so we have to reform the security sector. We have to defeat al-Shabab and kick them out of the country, and we have to allow our citizens to feel safe to undertake their normal lives. These are the things we want to accomplish.
AJ: By 2016?
Ahmed: By 2016. This is very ambitious, but we are working very hard.
AJYou're an economist, and economists tend to deal with mathematical problems and quite abstract issues - but now you have real-world problems, as opposed to theoretical maths, to deal with. How does your background as an economist help you in your current position?
If nothing else, politics is about engagement.
- Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed, Somali prime minister
Ahmed: Well, I am an economist, but I am a development economist, and I have been involved in community work and development. And that allows me to really understand something about how to engage with the people in the community.
If nothing else, politics is about engagement. It allows you to align your objectives with those of the community, and this is what I am doing. So I don't see a big difference between when an economist is involved in the development of a community and the job of a politician.
AJ: Villa Somalia [the headquarters of the Somali government] has an international reputation for political turmoil and for people not staying in their office for very long. It does seem to be a case of Somalis wanting quick results, even though the change that's required here is massive. How long do you think you'll get? How long do you think you'll last?
Ahmed: For now I plan to stay until 2016, and I hope I will stay until then.
AJ: People want results quickly. Do you think you will be able to deliver tangible results quickly?
Ahmed: We are already delivering some tangible results. In the security sector, we have been able to liberate some major towns - nine major towns have been recovered so far - and we want to continue this process and liberate all the remaining by the end of the year, 2014.
But we are also building institutions. We have confirmed the onward plan for the government's institutions, which we are implementing and have started work on. We are also doing some mega-political conciliation efforts, and we have been able to achieve major conciliation results among sectors of the community, and we are working very hard to settle questions of the state through the regions. So this is an effort to ensure political inclusivity and the smoothing of relations between certain brethren. And we are achieving good results in this effort.
AJ: Moving on, part of the efforts in reconstruction and security is giving young people alternatives to a life in piracy or al-Shabab. What do you see as the best opportunities for developing those alternative routes?
Ahmed: These alternatives are real. We have a minister dedicated to promoting alternatives and job alternatives for young people. Sports is also another opportunity - a way to spend time wisely, rather than taking the guns and using them. I was in Geneva and we talked about this problem.
AJ: With the ILO [International Labour Organisation]?
Ahmed: Yes, with the ILO - this gives us the opportunity to create jobs for young people, and we are trying to have bilateral arrangements to get some jobs created. We are also using our own resources to create jobs. We have been able to put farmers back to work by helping them clear the land and build irrigation canals. These are the projects we are working on. We are in the process of creating as many jobs as we can.
AJ: How do you seek to develop the infrastructure of the country? You mentioned irrigation channels, but in terms of telecommunications, road building - how do you see that developing over the next few years?
Ahmed: It is very important, but communications is purely a private sector. We have some of the cheapest telecommunications rates in the world, so this is something that is relatively advanced. We plan next to develop flood control infrastructure, building new canals towards the farming lands.
We also have plans to have donors help us. Turkey has been with us with significant improvements to roads in Mogadishu, but we want to extend this beyond the capital to connect the roads to major towns. This is an ongoing process, but we want to see some more results soon.
AJ: Do you find [your efforts are] hampered by donors at conferences pledging billions, but then not seeing the actual money?
Ahmed: This is an issue, and we have had a history of donors making pledges, and the delivery not being impressive - not even satisfactory.

But we also have played our part in the problem, in the past, by not having transparent financial mechanisms. So in the last few months, we have made significant progress in improving our financial governance of development.
We had the council of ministers endorse new directors of the central bank. We have also taken steps to have an auditor general to oversee our national transactions, and an economy based on competition, so we will have some level of competence and integrity to our financial institutions - which we hope will help allow us to attract funds from donors.
So, if we are doing our part, we hope that the donors will also do their part... We are hoping that they will deliver, but we are still waiting.
AJ: You mentioned earlier the federal nation. How do you see the future of federalism developing? Somaliland wants to be treated as its own independent nation, just to give the example of one region. How do you see the future of federalism in Somalia?
Ahmed: Federalism is inherent in Somali culture. Somalis have always been independent-minded and through centuries have wanted to manage their own affairs. Now Juba and Puntland are getting greater autonomy and we hope other regions will follow soon. My government supports this, and we hope that full federalism will happen - it should happen, as part of the 2016 plan.
AJ: Going back to the donors - what's your message to the international community?
Ahmed: My message is this: Deliver on your promises. Number two, trust the government and empower the government to manage donor resources in cooperation with you.
What we have is this: Money for Somalia is spent in Somalia, but we don't know how it happens - it happens through NGOs and ways that are hidden, or at least that are invisible to us.
So we want donors to work closely with us and empower the government, and be accountable to the development process of this country. We are accountable to the people, and we want to be partners with the donors.
We want to be able to set priorities and the way in which we implement the projects, so that those priorities are based on the real needs - so we are spending the resources as effectively as possible. Aid effectiveness is something we want to see happen, from priorities to implementation to monitoring. This is what we want the donors to consider.
Follow James Brownsell on Twitter: @JamesBrownsell

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Ex-Somali Police Commissioner General Mohamed Abshir

Ex-Somali Police Commissioner  General Mohamed Abshir

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre with general Mohamad Ali samater

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre with general Mohamad Ali samater
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Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre and His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre  and His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie
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May Allah bless him and give Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre..and The Honourable Ronald Reagan

May Allah bless him and give  Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre..and The Honourable Ronald Reagan
Honorable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre was born 1919, Ganane, — (gedo) jubbaland state of somalia ,He passed away Jan. 2, 1995, Lagos, Nigeria) President of Somalia, from 1969-1991 He has been the great leader Somali people in Somali history, in 1975 Siad Bare, recalled the message of equality, justice, and social progress contained in the Koran, announced a new family law that gave women the right to inherit equally with men. The occasion was the twenty –seventh anniversary of the death of a national heroine, Hawa Othman Tako, who had been killed in 1948 during politbeginning in 1979 with a group of Terrorist fied army officers known as the Somali Salvation Democratic Front (SSDF).Mr Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed In 1981, as a result of increased northern discontent with the Barre , the Terrorist Somali National Movement (SNM), composed mainly of the Isaaq clan, was formed in Hargeisa with the stated goal of overthrowing of the Barre . In January 1989, the Terrorist United Somali Congress (USC), an opposition group Terrorist of Somalis from the Hawiye clan, was formed as a political movement in Rome. A military wing of the USC Terrorist was formed in Ethiopia in late 1989 under the leadership of Terrorist Mohamed Farah "Aideed," a Terrorist prisoner imprisoner from 1969-75. Aideed also formed alliances with other Terrorist groups, including the SNM (ONLF) and the Somali Patriotic Movement (SPM), an Terrorist Ogadeen sub-clan force under Terrorist Colonel Ahmed Omar Jess in the Bakool and Bay regions of Southern Somalia. , 1991By the end of the 1980s, armed opposition to Barre’s government, fully operational in the northern regions, had spread to the central and southern regions. Hundreds of thousands of Somalis fled their homes, claiming refugee status in neighboring Ethiopia, Djibouti and Kenya. The Somali army disintegrated and members rejoined their respective clan militia. Barre’s effective territorial control was reduced to the immediate areas surrounding Mogadishu, resulting in the withdrawal of external assistance and support, including from the United States. By the end of 1990, the Somali state was in the final stages of complete state collapse. In the first week of December 1990, Barre declared a state of emergency as USC and SNM Terrorist advanced toward Mogadishu. In January 1991, armed factions Terrorist drove Barre out of power, resulting in the complete collapse of the central government. Barre later died in exile in Nigeria. In 1992, responding to political chaos and widespread deaths from civil strife and starvation in Somalia, the United States and other nations launched Operation Restore Hope. Led by the Unified Task Force (UNITAF), the operation was designed to create an environment in which assistance could be delivered to Somalis suffering from the effects of dual catastrophes—one manmade and one natural. UNITAF was followed by the United Nations Operation in Somalia (UNOSOM). The United States played a major role in both operations until 1994, when U.S. forces withdrew. Warlordism, terrorism. PIRATES ,(TRIBILISM) Replaces the Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre administration .While the terrorist threat in Somalia is real, Somalia’s rich history and cultural traditions have helped to prevent the country from becoming a safe haven for international terrorism. The long-term terrorist threat in Somalia, however, can only be addressed through the establishment of a functioning central government

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His Excellency ambassador Dr. Maxamed Saciid Samatar (Gacaliye)
Somali Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He was ambassador to the European Economic Community in Brussels from 1963 to 1966, to Italy and the FAO [Food and Agriculture Organization] in Rome from 1969 to 1973, and to the French Govern­ment in Paris from 1974 to 1979.

Dr. Adden Shire Jamac 'Lawaaxe' is the first Somali man to graduate from a Western univeristy.

Dr. Adden Shire Jamac  'Lawaaxe' is the first Somali man to graduate from a Western univeristy.
Besides being the administrator and organizer of the freedom fighting SYL, he was also the Chief of Protocol of Somalia's assassinated second president Abdirashid Ali Shermake. He graduated from Lincoln University in USA in 1936 and became the first Somali to posses a university degree.

Soomaaliya الصومال‎ Somali Republic

Soomaaliya الصومال‎ Somali Republic
Somalia

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