February 24, 2017 | Daily Monitoring Report

Main Story

King Salman Welcomes Somali President

24 February – Source : Arab News – Words

Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi met King Salman at Al-Yamamah Palace on Thursdayafter he arrived here on his first foreign trip since his election to the top office on Feb 8. During the meeting, the two leaders discussed aspects of bilateral cooperation between the two countries in order to further enhance relations in all fields. During the official talks, King Salman and the visiting Somali president also discussed the latest developments in the region including political, economic and security-related issues.

The meeting was also attended by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Naif, Riyadh Gov. Prince Faisal bin Bandar, National Guard Minister Prince Miteb bin Abdullah, Finance Minister Mohammed Al-Jadaan and and Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir, SPA reported. Saudi Arabia and Somalia share good relations with the Kingdom expressing solidarity with the Somali people during the various crises they have faced over the years.

Key Headlines

  • King Salman Welcomes Somali President (Arab News)
  • Local Administration In Gedo Region Vows To Eliminate Al-Shabaab From The Region (Goobjoog News)
  • Mogadishu Residents Welcome New PM (Radio Muqdisho)
  • Suspected Al-Shabaab Members Kidnap Two Aid Workers In Central Somalia (Goobjoog News)
  • IEBC Ex-chair Issack Hassan Now Lead Elections Consultant In Somalia (The Star Kenya)
  • What’s Next For Somalia (The Brookings Institution)


Local Administration In Gedo Region Vows To Eliminate Al-Shabaab From The Region

24 February – Source: Goobjoog News – 203 Words

The local authority in Somalia’s southern region, Gedo vowed on Friday that Somali forces will eliminate Al-Shabaab fighters from the region. Mohamed Hussein Al-Qadi, Gedo Deputy Governor said his administration is committed to the elimination of the group which controls parts of the region.

“In the recent months we have been carrying out attacks to eliminate Al-Shabaab fighters from the region, therefore we keep on annihilating the group and to make the region peaceful,” said  Al-Qadi. He assured that the forces will now embark on an operation to clear and open up the main road linking the towns in the region.

“We will open up the road linking the towns and ensure security along that roads passing through the region. It is our moral duty to take the war to Al-Shabaab and ensure they are defeated” he affirmed. He said Somali forces have reclaimed more territory from the group in renewed military operations across the region.

Al-Shabaab controlled most of southern and central Somalia before losing ground to AU and Somali forces over the past years. Somalia has not had a strong central government since former President Mohamed Siad Barre fled in 1991.

Mogadishu Residents Welcome New PM

24 February – Source: Radio Muqdisho – 80 Words

Residents of  Mogadishu have today lined up the streets of the city in support of the appointment of Hassan Ali Khayre as Somalia’s new PM.  The events which was organised by the Banadir administration have started this morning and participants are expected to gather in  the landmark Daljiirka Dahsoon where leaders from the Benadir administration are expected to address them.  Congratulatory messages and solidarity messages have been pouring in since the appointment of Hassan Ali Khayre as the PM designate.

Suspected Al-Shabaab Members Kidnap Two Aid Workers In Central Somalia

24 February – Source: Goobjoog News – 137 Words

Two local aid workers have been kidnapped in central Somalia by suspected Al-Shabaab gunmen, local authority confirmed on Friday. The two were snatched from their office in Hujun locality in the outskirt of Beledweyn town of Somalia’s central region, Hiraan. Mohamed Ahmed Fod-Adde, Beledweyne district commissioner said those aid workers had been kidnapped by Al-Shabaab fighters.

“Two aid workers of Somali nationality have been kidnapped by Al- Shabaab, they are working for Save The Children,” said Fod-Adde. He said local elders are making vigorously efforts that could paved the way for the release of the kidnapped humanitarian workers. Several attacks on aid workers, believed to have been carried out by Al-Shabaab, occurred in central and southern Somalia since Al-Shabaab ousted the control of many towns in Somalia.


IEBC Ex-chair Issack Hassan Now Lead Elections Consultant In Somalia

24 February – Source: The Star, Kenya – 142 Words

Former IEBC chairman Issack Hassan travelled to Mogadishu, Somalia, on Friday to work as a lead consultant with the electoral commission. Hassan made the announcement via Facebook, saying this was his first trip outside Kenya after Wafula Chebukati took over from him on January 20.

He wrote while at the JKIA that the consultancy was “for the development of the strategic plan and other operation manuals.” Hassan’s last few months in office were tough as the Opposition pushed for the forceful removal of his team.

The commissioners had also been accused of corruption and colluding with the government to rig the August 8general election. Hassan and his team resigned in October last year in what was a clear victory for Cord. The commissioners in Chebukati’s team are Consolata Nkatha, Bucha Maina, Boya Molu, Roselyn Akombe, Paul Kurgat, Margaret Wanjalaand Abdi Guliye.


“Despite its intimidation campaign and terrorist attacks, al-Shabab was not able to prevent the parliamentary and presidential election process. That does not mean, however, that the group is any weaker than it was a year ago.”

What’s Next For Somalia

24 February – Source: The Brookings Institution – 1,999 Words

After several months of delay, a new president of Somalia was elected on February 8, 2017. The fact that an election took place at all should be counted a success. Despite the so­-called Somali New Deal Compact of September 2013, in which the country’s government pledged to international donors and its people that it would hold an inclusive election by the end of 2016, the process was highly imperfect in both design and execution.

Once again, insecurity stemming from the jihadist al-Shabab insurgency, clan rivalries, tensions among newly formed sub-federal states, and violent criminality prevented a broadly participatory national election. Instead, the vote was left to 14,000 elders and influential political figures who, over the course of several months, elected 275 members of the Parliament and 54 senators.

These officials went on to pick the new president. Extensive corruption and vote buying tainted the process. To secure support from the elders and influentials, potential parliamentarians were reputed to have paid tens of thousands of dollars for a vote. Intimidation and clan politics also marred the process. But the fact that the incumbent President Hassan Sheik Mohamud accepted defeat and stepped down is an important win, not just for Somalia itself but in the continent more broadly.

The new president, Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, has some strong credentials, not the least of which is a reputation for not being corrupt. He is a dual citizen of Somalia and the United States, with technocratic experience from both countries. But Mohamed, known by his nickname Farmajo (derived from the Italian word for cheese), is facing many tough challenges. These include fractious politics and entrenched corruption, a stubborn insurgency and insecurity, and an increasingly challenging external environment.

In January 2016, the group attacked and devastated a Kenyan military base in southern Somalia, reportedly killing more than 100 soldiers. It was one of the deadliest days for the Kenyan military, exposing the many deficiencies of its counterinsurgency strategy. A year later, in January 2017, Al-Shabaab attacked another Kenyan military base in Somalia, killing some 50 soldiers. For its part, the Kenyan government has denied the reports.


@FemaleNomad1 : Mexico: The waystation from Somalia to Canada http://www.cbc.ca/news/thenational/mexico-the-waystation-from-somalia-to-canada-1.3993517 …

@Niyves : #PambazukaNews: A woman’s determination to confront patriarchy in #Somalia http://go.shr.lc/2lACqKJ  via @FahamuAfrica

@Fatumaabdulahi : We have a robust and diverse Somali community on Twitter. Heated disagreements a good sign we are paying close attention.  #Somalia

@Eman_Jama : Prime Minister Khayre is a brilliant strategist, astute, articulate, humble & competent. Just what #Somalia needs today! #Proud

@JimStenman : .@CNNConnect dedicated an entire block to #Somalia this week. Grateful 4 your stories @CMoralesCNN & Pete Kowalczyk.

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Image of the daySaudi Arabia’s King Salman receives and holds official talks with Somalia’s President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo in Riyadh.

Photo: @asmali77


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