06 March – Source: CTGN – 327 Words
More than 30 aid agencies working in Somalia on Monday called on multilateral lenders to cancel the Horn of Africa nation’s debt so that Mogadishu can access funds to create conducive environment for investment. The agencies, including World Vision, Action Aid, Save the Children and Relief International, said in a joint statement issued on the eve of a London conference for Somalia that lending restrictions are hampering Mogadishu’s efforts to scale up investments in education, health and security sectors. “Cancelling the debt would give Somalia access to long-term development finance and create the conditions for private investment,” the organizations said.
International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde in January pledged to prioritize Somalia’s debt relief, saying every effort is being made to speed up the process. According to the IMF, Somalia’s external debt is about 5 billion U.S. dollars, but Mogadishu has not made a service or amortization payment since the onset of the civil war two decades ago, making it impossible to access loans from the IMF.
The agencies said the countries that are in arrears to the IMF and the World Bank are not eligible for debt relief, nor can they receive funding through the World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA). “These arcane rules on arrears are excluding Somalia from one of the largest development financing pots. As many policy influencers gather in London, they have an opportunity to change this picture,” said the agencies.
- Aid Agencies Urge Debt Relief For Somalia (CTGN)
- UK Commits Additional $34 M In Humanitarian Aid To Somalia (Radio Dalsan)
- Governor of Banadir Launches Consultation Meeting On IDPs In Mogadishu (Jowhar.com)
- Gunmen Kill A Civilian In Somalia Capital (Shabelle News)
- Kenya To Assist Somalia Develop Legal And Justice Systems (Capital News)
- Somaliland Poet Arrested (BBC)
- What Berbera Port Agreement Means For The Federal Government Of Somalia (Hiiraan Online)
UK Commits Additional $34 M In Humanitarian Aid To Somalia
06 March – Source: Radio Dalsan – 312 Words
The United Kingdom has committed an additional $34.2M package of humanitarian support to Somalia, the UK’s International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt told an audience of global donors today. At an event co-hosted by the Department for International Development (DFID), the Federal Republic of Somalia and the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the International Development Secretary praised the efforts of the international community in 2017 – but called for continued global support for the 5.4 million people in need living in Somalia. Six years ago Somalia was ravaged by a deadly famine which killed 260,000 people – half of those who died were children.
“Last year the UK stood up and called for international action at a landmark conference to agree critical help for the people of Somalia. Together, we helped avert a famine and saved thousands of lives. But drought continues to haunt Somalia, where today half the population is hungry and at risk of disease. The job is not yet done” Mordaunt said at the International Safeguarding Summit. “Drought and famine do not have to go hand-in-hand. We must harness the potential of new ideas to build future-proof resilience against drought – and end the cycle of crisis” she said.
“We cannot let the world forget Somalia. It’s not just the right thing to do – we are all less safe when hunger and poverty are free to feed extremism and mass irregular migration” she warned.The emergency package announced by the International Development Secretary is to get urgently needed medical, nutritional, health and livelihood support to the country, including to 54,000 children who will be treated for Severe Acute Malnutrition. The package will be distributed before the end of March 2018, to ensure urgent delivery of these life-saving services.
Governor of Banadir Launches Consultation Meeting On IDPs In Mogadishu
06 March – Source: Jowhar.com – 121 Words
Governor of Banadir Region, Abdirahman Omar Osman has launched a consultative conference on Internally displaced persons in Mogadishu. The conference was attended by Deputy Minister of Planning, Internal Security, members of regional States, Benadir Regional Administration, and experts. Speaking at the conference Eng Yarisow noted that his plan aims to resettle the displaced people in the capital citing that 500,000 people are currently displaced in Benadir region and live in difficult conditions. “Most of the IDPs are located in the camps of Mogadishu since 2011, during that 7 years we have not succeeded in finding a permanent solution, but now it seems we can work together to create a better life for these people, ” said Eng. Yarisow.
Gunmen Kill A Civilian In Somalia Capital
06 March – Source – Shabelle News -124 Words
Unidentified gunmen have shot and killed a civilian in Mogadishu, the Somali capital on Tuesday, the latest in a string of assassinations in the city in the past few months. According to the eyewitnesses, two men armed with pistols gunned down the civilian at Sigaale area on the road linking Shaqalaha junction to KPP.
The killers managed to escape the scene before the arrival of the Somali security forces who later launched an unsuccessful search operation for the culprits. The move behind the killing and the identity of the killers are yet unclear, however, police said an investigation is underway. Mogadishu has witnesses series of assassinations against Somali security personnel and civil servants, some claimed by the Al Qaeda-linked Al-Shabaab militants in the past.
06 March – Source: Capital News – 481 Words
The Government of Kenya has reaffirmed its commitment in assisting the Federal Government of Somalia re-establish its governance systems by redeveloping the country’s legal and justice systems. The two governments that have had a longstanding cordial relationship based on the principles of Pan Africanism observe the need to continually cultivate peaceful diplomatic relations aimed at strengthening their ties.
Somali’s Minister for Justice, Hassan Hussein Haji reiterated Somalia’s reliance on Kenya to rebuild its systems when he paid a courtesy call on outgoing Attorney General Githu Muigai Tuesday morning. “As we rebuild our systems, we remain indebted to the Kenyan Government for the role it has played in the past and continues to play today as we rebuild our country. As a government, we have so far been able to achieve a significant sense of security, political and economic stability in our country.
We are now focusing on developing our judicial systems and look to learn from Kenya which has a strong system built over the years,” Haji stated. Professor Muigai on his part reiterated Kenya’s belief in Pan Africanism as developed by the founding fathers of African countries at independence. The Attorney General in particular observed that the Kadhis Courts remained an envied embodiment of Islamic law with many African countries learning from its implementation within the confines of a secular state as Kenya.
06 March – Source: BBC – 195 Words
Authorities in the breakaway republic of Somaliland have formally charged a poet, Naema Qorane, with spreading unpatriotic propaganda. The poet has been outspoken in her calls for a united Somalia, something she champions in her performances and Facebook posts. If found guilty, Qorane could face up to eight years in prison. She was charged yesterday by Somaliland’s Attorney General for “anti-national activity of a citizen and bringing the nation or state in contempt”. It followed her arrest on 27 January upon her return to her native Somaliland after visiting Mogadishu where she has performed at a TEDx event. Guled Ahmed Jama, who heads an independent human rights centre in Hargeisa, called Ms Qorane’s arrest “oppressive”:
The main issue we are criticising the authorities for is the arrest of Naema for a rant she wrote on her Facebook – we believe that she has exercised her rights to express her opinion. We believe that this is not in line with local and international laws. We see the charges against Naema as oppressive measure against her rights to express her views.” Somaliland authorities are sensitive about matters related to unification. The self-declared independent state was created in 1991.
OPINION, ANALYSIS AND CULTURE
“There is short term damage to Somali Federal Government institutions if the incumbent government is not able to put the implementation of the agreement on hold; the longer term damage will affect Somaliland’s quest for statehood. It will have acted like a sovereign state when the question of union or secession remains unsettled. That is not a road to take to become a new sovereign state in Africa,”
05 March – Source: Hiiraan Online – 625 Words
The signing of the tripartite agreement on Berbera Port made to coincide with the visit of the Prime Minister of the Federal Government of Somalia in UAE presents the Mogadishu-based government with the second sovereignty-diminishing problem. The first occurred several months after the inauguration of President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo in February in 2017, when a Somali national was extradited to Ethiopia for allegedly being a member of ONLF.
The Berbera Port Agreement will reduce the image of the Federal Government of Somalia as a key negotiator with Somaliland Government on the possibility of giving the union a second chance or opting for amicable break up of Somalia into two sovereign states in the Horn of Africa. Controversial though the Port deal is the onus to prevent it from turning into a divisive issue among Somalis and Somalia’s international partners is, one hand, on Somali political leaders in Hargeisa and Mogadishu , and the International Community on the other.
If, as Somaliland argues, the agreement was concluded between the Somaliland government and the former Federal Government under President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, the federal government should share with the public the documentation on the agreement. The bone of contention in Berbera Port agreement pertains not to allowing Somaliland to sign an agreement with the DP World; it revolves around the share a foreign country, Ethiopia in this case, will have in the deal.
The Prime Minister of Somalia, Hassan Khayre, stated that the Berbera Port agreement was in violation of the draft constitution of Somalia. It is understandable that an agreement signed by a predecessor’s government will be hard to rescind; it will put in the public sphere the capability and reliability of the federal government up for discussion. Somalilanders counter the federal government’s statement with a response that emphasises inability of the government to operate without reliance on AMISOM. If sovereignty of Somalia does not entitle a national government to the right to challenge external actions affecting territorial or political unity of Somalia, the double standard that is undermining the post-World War II Order will inescapably come to the fore.
DP World, which is based in UAE, a country that contributes to the development of Somali security forces and the national army and where DP World is based , and Ethiopia whose troops are part of AMISOM, have now in their hands the powers to undo what the British Government has done to help Somalis to phase out the Transitional Federal Government and pave the way for a permanent federal government whose performance has lifted Somalia out of the failed state status and placed in a fragile state status. Interdependence among African countries is a worthy goal but it should not be realised at the expense of budding political institutions for a country recovering from a prolonged civil war and statelessness.
View previous Round Ups from Daily Media Monitoring.