Security Minister Warns Police Officers Against Soliciting Bribes
11 April – Source : Goobjoog News – 156 Words
Internal security minister Mohamed Abukar Islow has told police officers they will be accountable for their actions warning them against soliciting bribes from the public. Islow said the police must act professionally and treat people respectfully especially during operations and road closures. “You should know that you will be held accountable. We will visit all police stations and ensure all officers work within the law,” said Islow. The new minister told the officers to desist from taking bribes from the public noting, ‘members of the public should run to you for help and not run away from you’.
There have been accusations from the public against police officers demanding bribes from road users especially from the public transport vehicles. Public transport drivers in Lower Shabelle and Bay regions told Goobjoog News they were now forced to use alternative but dangerous routes to avoid being forced to pay bribes by soldiers manning road blocks in the regions.
- Security Minister Warns Police Officer Against Soliciting Bribes (Goobjoog News)
- Galmudug And ASWJ To Hold Talks In Mogadishu (Markacadeey.com)
- Southwest President Orders His Forces To Reopen Al-Shabaab Controlled Roads For Aid Access (Goobjoog News)
- Inside Somaliland Where Drought Threatens Starvation (CTV News)
- Somali Entrepreneurs Launch First Taxi Hailing App In Somalia (Biztech Africa)
- Three Reasons For Optimism In Somalia (The Conversation)
Galmudug And ASWJ To Hold Talks In Mogadishu
10 April – Source : Markacadeey.com – 146 Words
Galmudug and moderate Islamist group Ahlu Sunna Waljama’a (ASWJ) officials are expected to hold key talks in Mogadishu in the coming days. Galmudug delegation led by acting President Mohamed Hashi Abdi Arrabey has arrived in Mogadishu at the invitation of top Somali Federal Government leadership, with ASWJ officials anticipated to arrive in Mogadishu today or tomorrow. The five-day talks will focus on ironing out the political dispute between the two sides and expanding the regional government by bringing ASWJ on board.
The talks will be brokered by the Somali Federal Government and International community. Galmudug presidential election which was previously set to be held on April 10 has been postponed for 20 days to give talks a chance and form an all-inclusive administration in central Somalia regions. ASWJ accepted to unite with Galmudug when its leader Sheikh Mohammed Shakir met President Farmajo in Mogadishu in February.
Southwest President Orders His Forces To Reopen Al-Shabaab Controlled Roads For Aid Access
11 April – Source : Goobjoog News – 187 Words
South West President,Sharif Hassan Sheikh Aden on Monday asked the forces to launch an operation to reopen roads manned by Al-Shabaab fighters for humanitarian aid access.Al-Shabaab militants had some years ago banned western NGOs and their partners from Southern Somalia. The President said his administration would now give a priority on how to dislodge Al-Shabaab from key supply routes in a bid to facilitate delivery of humanitarian aid to drought-affected communities in the region.“Opening supply routes is very crucial to alleviate the humanitarian crisis and save the lives of the drought-affected people,” he said.
He said Al-Shabaab was the biggest problem facing drought relief campaign in the region, accusing the militant group of doing all it can to prevent aid from reaching its intended people.President Aden said the extremist group is against that any aid reaches the drought victims, thus leading to mass displacement of people from territories held by the group. Al-Shabaab militant group blocked off major roads entering towns in Bakool and Bay regions since the group lost the control of the major towns to the allied forces five months ago.
10 April – Source : CTV News – 338 Words
On the horn of Africa in eastern Somaliland, crops have turned to dust and animal skeletons litter the landscape. It’s a grim reminder of the severe drought now threatening as many as 20 million people. CTV’s Melanie Nagy is on the ground in the self-declared independent region of Somalia which, along with parts of Nigeria, Yemen and South Sudan, is facing what the UN calls the largest humanitarian crisis since it was founded in 1945. Nomadic farmer Farah Mohamed, 71, showed off the bones of dozens of goats that have already died since the rains stopped. “I lost most of my livestock, my livelihood,” Mohamed said. “We are barely getting by.”
Mohamed called the drought “the worst I have ever seen.” Meanwhile, dry riverbeds and empty wells are pushing people like Haweeya Ahmed to abandon their homes and flee their villages. Fearing that her children would die, Ahmed says she trekked for days to reach a relative’s village, which still has water, at least for now. “We share what we have,” Ahmed said. “But we still don’t have enough. Everyone is hungry and worried.” In Somalia, more than 6.2 million people already don’t have enough to eat, according to the UN. That’s about half the population.
More than 260,000 people died in the last major famine to hit Somalia, which lasted from between October 2010 to April 2012. The crisis is compounded by outbreaks of cholera and tuberculosis, political instability, and the presence of the terrorist group al-Shabab, which blocks movements by those trying to deliver aid. There is also a lack of money. The UN said last month that it needed US$4.4 billion by July in order to avoid mass starvation. Canada’s government has so far pledged $119.25 million to the region.
10 April – Source : Biztech Africa – 628 Words
Somali start-up Waryaa Taxi has launched its new taxi hailing app, allowing passengers to book taxis from the convenience of their smartphones for the first time in Somalia. ‘Waryaa’ is a Somali language word meaning ‘hey’. The Uber-style on-demand app Waryaa Taxi was founded by a group of entrepreneurs who identified the need to facilitate better transportation services in different cities in the Horn of Africa. The company, in collaboration with its technical partners which had grown its base by deploying a free web and smartphone application that connects passengers directly with taxi drivers allowing customers to book with certainty every time, and to create jobs, enable better transportation modes and place pricing for the service in the hands of the customer, while improving productivity for taxi drivers, car hire companies and private drivers.
“Waryaa Taxi is a creation of individuals who were tired of overpaying for taxis. They were also concerned about the security of many taxis in the region. WARYAA taxi is safe, cheap and convenient, The application connects taxi drivers and passengers allowing them to experience a fast, convenient and safe ride, at just a tap of button.” said Omar Kodah, co-founder and CEO of Waryaa Taxi. It’s not an entirely new concept, though unique to Somalia. The smart taxi service is similar to USA based Uber.
“As safety is the first priority in Somalia, Women generally feel more comfortable in vehicles whose GPS coordinates are monitored every few seconds, in a car whose condition has been verified by a third party, and which is driven by carefully screened & trained drivers. We are currently working to make deals with drivers in main cities,” said Kodah, who noted that huge money of dollars were invested to build the software.
OPINION, ANALYSIS AND CULTURE
“Protecting borders is vital for state building. Forces favorable to the Somali government have made advances against al-Shabab militants since 2012. The retreat of al-Shabab in many regions suggests that Somalia can defend its borders better now. Funding cuts under the recent EU budget will affect the African Union’s Somalia mission of fighting al-Shabab. There are expectations, however, that the U.S. will increase military spending in Somalia to offset this loss.”
11 April – Source : The Conversation – 923 Words
In 2016, Somalia was declared the most fragile state in the world worse off than Syria. In February 2017, the United Nations issued an early famine warning for the country, which is suffering from drought, clan warfare, government corruption and attacks from the Islamic militant group, Al-Shabaab. Adding to the misery, President Trump has attempted to ban Somali refugees’ entry into the U.S. Yet, as an academic who studies European and African state and nation building, I see three reasons for hope in Somalia. Building stable institutions: For the first time since the 1991 overthrow of former dictator Siad Barre and the collapse of central government authority, Somalia has newly functioning political institutions. In 2004, a transitional federal government tried to centralize the government but failed to hold elections. During the 2011 famine, the delivery of humanitarian aid was disrupted by recurring clan warfare. Somalis realized they needed stronger, legitimate political institutions to control and unify their national territory.
There are four major and many minor Somali clans, each with its own traditions and territories. Clan divisions have had a significant impact on Somalia’s status as a fragile state. By 2012, and with help from the U.N., the clans agreed to a power sharing formula to allocate parliamentary seats. The agreement helped the clan elders come together and led to the first formal parliament in 20 years. Elections followed, but cautiously. The 2016 parliamentary elections and the 2017 presidential elections built on the formula created in 2012, but with more delegates participating to elect the parliament. To avoid violence from the clans or Al-Shabaab contingents, the vote for president was limited to members of the upper and lower houses of parliament, the members of which were chosen by the clans. They cast ballots at a heavily guarded air force base in Mogadishu.
Citizen response to the election of President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo was enthusiastic. He took office on Feb. 8, 2017, in a smooth transition from the former President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud. He declared an era of unity. Farmajo’s experience of living in the United States he holds dual citizenship and graduated from SUNY, Buffalo and remittances from the Somali diaspora may help the economy grow and democratic values take hold.
IMAGE OF THE DAY
Somali president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo who is currently visiting UAE meets with Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, at the Qasr Al Bahr Palace
Photo: Radio Muqdisho