20 December – Source: Reuters – 697 Words
Some Somali lawmakers said on Wednesday they plan to impeach the president in a mounting political crisis that could put the fledgling government on a violent collision course with one of the country’s most powerful clans. The political turmoil endangers fragile gains against the Islamist al Shabaab insurgency and could derail the government of President Mohamed Abdullahi. Universally known by his nickname “Farmajo”, the dual U.S.-Somali citizen took power earlier this year in a U.N.-backed process.
The Horn of Africa state’s parliament adjourned last week until the end of February, but some legislators want it to reconvene on an emergency basis, lawmaker Mahad Salad told Reuters. “Ninety-six lawmakers have asked the speaker to reopen the session so that the impeachment against the president kicks off. The president is accused of violation of the constitution, treason, destruction of the federal states and so on,” he said.
The letter had not yet been delivered to the speaker. There are 275 lawmakers and two-thirds would have to vote against the president to impeach him. The motion follows a deadly raid on Sunday on the home of an opposition leader, Abdirahman Abdishakur Warsame, who ran for the presidency against Farmajo. Somali security agents arrived at his house around midnight and engaged his guards in a firefight, killing five people.
- Somali Lawmakers Seek To Impeach President Amid Political Crisis (Reuters)
- Ahlusunna’s Sheikh Shakir Reach Guri El And Announce Change Of Name (Radio Dalsan)
- Somali Police Force Celebrates Its 74th Anniversary (Goobjoog News)
- Forum On State Of Somalis Kicks Off In Djibouti (VOA Somali)
- Somalis Faced ‘inhumane’ Abuse On US deportation Flight (Aljazeera)
- Rewinding The Clock—A Return to Somalia As We Know It! (Hiiraan Online)
Ahlusunna’s Sheikh Shakir Reach Guri El And Announce Change Of Name
20 December – Source: Radio Dalsan – 113 Words
Ahlusunna Wal Jamaa’s leader Sheikh Mohamed Shakir reached Guri El town after travelling back from Mogadishu. Sheikh Shakir and a delegation he was leading were highly welcomed by the local leaders at the Guri El airport where he addressed the media and announced the change of name from“Central Regions Administration” to “Galmudug” in order to work and implement the agreement signed in Mogadishu brokered by the federal government and international partners.
He also said that a lot of activities will soon begin in Dhusamareb, the capital city of Galmudug State. This came after an impasse in the region was recently solved through a power-sharing deal between Ahlusunna and the existing Galmudug administration.
Somali Police Force Celebrates Its 74th Anniversary
20 December – Source: Goobjoog News – 216 Words
Somali Federal Police force celebrated their 74th anniversary since formation in 20th December, 1943. The special event which was held in Mogadishu was attended by top officials from the government including the Prime Minister Hassan Ali Kheire, federal security minister Mohamed Abukar Islow, Banadir governor Thabit Abdi, interim police commander General Bashir Abdi Mohamed and international partners.
Addressing the event, Premier Kheire sent his congratulatory message to all police officers in the country and their families. “I am passing my good wishes to all the Somali police officers irrespective of their ranks including their families on their 74th anniversary in the federal and regional governments” said Premier Kheire. “To have a shelter over our heads today here is the efforts of these 17 soldiers who sacrificed their lives for us to celebrate today this event. We need to support their families as our own .” Those who sustained injuries “will be given medical attention locally but the ones in critical conditions will also be taken for medical attention abroad” said PM Kheire.
The law enforcement force had several major centres in the country for trainings and capacity building before the collapse of the central government in the early 1990s among them Police Academy for personnel training in Mogadishu, Beledweyne and logistical training in transportation in Baidoa town.
Forum On State Of Somalis Kicks Off In Djibouti
20 December – Source: VOA Somali – 116 Words
A forum on the state of Somalis opened in Djibouti and is attended by over 100 prominent Somali opinion makers across the globe. The three-day forum organized by the Heritage Institute for Policy Studies (HIPS) and hosted by the Djiboutian government convened political leaders, business experts, and educated Somalis from the Horn and across the world to deliberate on issues facing Somalis everywhere.
The Djiboutian minister of culture and religion Mumin Hassan Barre opened the forum. Abdikarin Hassan Jama, one of the officials of HIPS said the forum will be held annually to deliberate on issues affecting the Somali people. Senior Somali government officials including Minister of Planning and Investment, Jamal Hassan are also in attendance.
20 December – Source: Al Jazeera – 738 Words
More than 90 Somali men and women were subjected to “inhumane conditions and egregious abuse” on a failed deportation flight that lasted nearly 48 hours and was eventually forced to return to the United States earlier this month, according to a class-action lawsuit filed this week. Ninety-two Somali nationals were being deported by US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to Somalia from the US state of Louisiana on December 7 when their flight made a stop in Dakar, Senegal.
But the flight never reached Somalia and was forced to return to the US on December 9. “For more than two days, ICE agents subjected Petitioners to inhumane conditions and mistreatments including acts of serious physical violence that resulted in still untreated injuries,” the lawsuit, which was filed in US District Court, reads. The plaintiffs, Somali asylum seekers who are currently being held in immigration detention in South Florida, are asking the court to issue an order preventing their deportation to Somalia.
According to the claim, for the duration of the nearly 48-hour journey, which included 23 hours on the runway in Senegal, the deportees said they were forced by ICE agents to “stay seated and chained at their wrists, ankles, and waists”.”When the flight was in Dakar for 23 hours, ICE officers and contract guards beat, kicked, choked, pushed, straightjacketed, threatened to kill, and berated people on the plane,” it continues.
ICE and contract guards on the plane also stopped the deportees from accessing the toilet, the lawsuit alleges, “forcing people to try to urinate in bottles or on themselves”. “ICE agents wrapped some who protested, or just stood up to ask a question, in full-body restraints. ICE agents kicked, struck, or dragged detainees down the aisle of the plane, and subjected some to verbal abuse and threats,” the lawsuit states. ICE denies allegations.
OPINION, ANALYSIS AND CULTURE
“Regardless of any consequences that might arise from this latest government act, it is clear that in today’s modern history, Somalia has failed to produce leaders who genuinely are capable of rising to the issues at hand and successfully address the numerous security, political, social and economic problems facing the nation,”
19 December – Source: Hiiraan Online – 1126 Words
In 1991, Somalis experienced the collapse of the last effective government and the end of the dictatorship. But this also instigated the outbreak of one of the most devastating civil wars in the nation’s history. In the absence of central government, warlords, clans, sub-clans and Islamist movements took to the floor in an apparently never-ending fight for power and resource control. To understand the power struggle and sensitivity of Somalis to dictatorship, one needs to return to the nation’s political context and review how it arrived at its current destiny. Ever since 1960, power and access were pursued as an opportunity to promote stakes of many clans to which the central leadership belonged to, or elite group of leaders. Competing clans advocated for factional rights, benefits, resource partition, oppression, promotions and demotions from the central government.
Consequently, consistent patterns of political imprisonment, torture, and political assassinations have become continual highlights. No one could dare to author a single anti-government sentiment or disagree with its course. Without a doubt, it was a flawed system, which has replicated itself ever since independence. It was the impact of this system that inspired the uprise to oust the Siad Barre government and to seek a more democratic and inclusive decentralized federal state in which the Somali citizens feel safe and entitlement.
On December 17, 2017, the Somali Attorney General held a press conference and made a statement to seek prosecution of two lawmakers and requested the Somali Parliament to strip them the ‘Immunity’. An overnight raid by the Somali security forces who have arrested Abdirahman Abdishakur, a former minister and outspoken critic of the current government followed this announcement. Abdishakur was a rival candidate in the last presidential election won by the current President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo.
According to a spokesman for the Internal Security Ministry ‘Abdishakur was arrested for treason’. After this statement came to light, many begun to ask the characterization of the term—Treason. By definition, the term means— The betrayal of one’s own country by waging war against it or by consciously or purposely acting to aid its enemies. As stated by the Ministry of Internal Security and the Attorney General, the current Administration views opposition MPs and politicians including Mr. Abdishakur to be engaging incitement and subversion to create public disorders by using foreign funds.
As enshrined in the Constitution, Article 12—the Application of the Fundamental Rights “It is the responsibility of the state not only to ensure it does not violate rights through its actions but also to take reasonable steps to protect the rights of the people from abuse by others.” Article 16 of the Federal Constitution on the provision of ‘Freedom of Association’ states, “Every person has the right to associate with other individuals and groups. This includes the right to form and belong to organizations, including trade unions and political parties. It also includes the right not to associate with others, and a person cannot be forced to associate with any other individual or group.”
Article 18 of the Constitution affirms,“Every person has the right to have and express their opinions and to receive and impart their opinion, information, and ideas in any way. Freedom of expression includes freedom of speech, and freedom of the media, including all forms of electronic and web-based media.” Further, Article 20—Freedom of Assembly, Demonstration, Protest, and Petition asserts, “Every person has the right to organize and participate in meetings, and to demonstrate and protest peacefully, without requiring prior authorization.
Every person has the right to present petitions to State Institutions.” In Title Duties of Citizens Article 42 enacts the following clauses among others: “To be patriotic and loyal to the country and to promote its development and well-being. To promote accountability and the rule of law.” So, would it be deemed ‘patriotic and loyal to the country’ if one views the present leadership as flaws and wants to fix? The government allegedly accused its opposition of receiving foreign funds with intent to unseat the leadership.