Somalia’s Unreserved Support for Erdogan during the Coup Crisis

On Friday evening 15th July, a faction of Turkish military forces attempted to topple the democratically elected President, Erdogan. The group declared a martial law on Turkish state television in Ankara. President Erdogan asked citizens go to streets and oppose the coup d’état. The tanks and helicopters of the group clashed with citizens and police in the streets of Ankara and Istanbul. On early Saturday, president Erdogan landed at Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport and it was apparent that the coup failed. At least 265 individuals were killed and more than 1440 were wounded. The Turkish government accused Fethullah Gulen as the mastermind of the failed coup. More than six thousand army officers and judges many of whom believed to be supporters of the exiled cleric are detained by authorities. Turkey’s opposition parties and many world leaders condemned the attempted coup. But the U.S. and its European allies in NATO reacted to the coup with caution, urging restraint.

Somalia was the first country to condemn the coup. Somali president released a press statement around mid-night on Friday, just 2 hours after the announcement of the coup. He supported the democratically elected government led by president Erdogan stating that “it is unacceptable to reverse the democratic path that the people of Turkey enjoyed in the recent times of their history. This was unfortunate and we are very glad to hear that the evil forces who tried to turn Turkey into a violent ground have been defeated’’. Somalia’s Puntland president Abdiwali Gaas also congratulated Turkey for defeating the military faction who attempted the coup. “I want to extend my congratulatory message with the Turkish Government“, he said. The Coalition of Somali Political Parties did not miss the opportunity either to denounce the coup. In a statement, the coalition said “we are delighted to see the dark forces are defeated by the brave citizens of Turkey, the security forces and by the Turkish leaders”.

In addition, Mogadishu local authority organized a big rally against the coup and showed solidarity with the Turkish Government. Hundreds of Somalis including Mogadishu mayor, deputies, district commissioners, and religious leaders gathered at Daljirka Daahsoon square waving Somali and Turkish flags and visited the Turkey’s embassy in Mogadishu, which is the largest Turkish embassy in Africa. On Saturday afternoon, the Somali Prime Minster and some of his cabinet ministries also visited the Turkish ambassador to Somalia to further express Somalia’s support and solidarity. Somalis in Barawe city in Lower Shabelle also rallied against the coup. Similarly, Somalis in various countries reacted strongly on social media and condemned the unsuccessful coup.

Not only did the Somali government symbolically supported the Turkish government but it has also taken action against institutions believed to have links with those suspected of plotting the coup. The Council of Ministries issued orders to close down projects in Somalia run by Nile Organization which has links with Hizmet-Gulen Movement led by Fethullah Gulen. The Somali government also asked Turkish nationals working on these projects to leave the country in seven days. According to the Federal Minister of Information, the decision was taken after a request from Turkish Government. Nile Organization manages three schools in the country: two in Mogadishu and one in Hargeisa. It also runs a private hospital in Mogadishu known as ‘Deva’ and supports orphanages. In addition, the organization helped hundreds of Somalis to study in Turkey.

Despite the solidarity with which many Somalis have so far shown for the democratically elected Turkish government, the closure of this charity did not go well with the public. This is attributable to a number of reasons. Firstly, the decision was taken hours after the failed coup in Turkey without meticulous planning and study on potential consequences for Somalis. Secondly, the government did not mention any other business other than the education and health services that the organization was involved. Third, the organization was allowed to invest, decorate and use public premises in Mogadishu, which is a sign that the government had no problems with the organization initially. For whatever reason, and considering the capacity and commitment of the current federal government in the provision of education and health services to citizens, there are no guarantees that the Somali beneficiaries of Nile Organization projects will not face negative consequences. The organization may switch Mogadishu projects to Hargeisa, which is beyond the writ of Somali Federal Government, and students in Turkey sent by the organization are very susceptible.

The quick reaction and overwhelming support of Somali political leaders, administrative regions and citizens are predictable. First, Erdogan, the current president of Turkey, helped Somalia get the attention of the international community. He visited Somalia three times, August 2011, January 2015 and June 2016, and implemented tangible projects across the country. He was the first leader of his weight who landed Mogadishu after the civil wars and he came here with his wife, daughter, politicians, business people, celebrities and journalists in August 2011 at a time when Somalia was facing a severe drought, which caused the death of more than 260,000 Somalis. He pledged support and implemented development and infrastructural projects in Somalia in the past five years. Therefore, any attempt to undermine his rule is not welcome in Somalia. As Somali Foreign Minister put it, “Turkish people and their government have provided close to one billion dollars’ worth of aid, investment and infrastructure rebuilding since 2011 to Somalia”. More recently, Turkish government pledged an annual budgetary support of $24 million to the Somali government.

Second, Mogadishu is the largest beneficiary of Turkish engagement in Somalia. Since 2011, Turkey has constructed roads, hospitals, schools, and IDP camps in Mogadishu. Furthermore, they have invested in Mogadishu airport, added a new terminal, and started direct Turkish flight that linked Mogadishu to the rest of the world. Moreover, the management of Mogadishu port helped Somali government increase its internal revenue and promoted the export and import trade; Istanbul Municipality helped Mogadishu local government clean roads. Turkish business, humanitarian and development organizations were also active in helping Somalis in Mogadishu get skills, employment and quality services. Therefore, the quick response and support of Mogadishu residents towards the failed coup has sensible roots and reasons. The public who rallied in Mogadishu waving Turkish flags was a sign of how Turkey won their hurts and minds. The Turkish embassy thanked Somalis in Mogadishu for their solidarity and support.

Finally, many Somalis benefited from Turkish engagement with Somalia directly or indirectly. Thousands of students received full scholarships and attend universities in Turkey. Others got employment opportunities and/or skills. These among others, were some of the reasons why Somalis were overwhelmingly supporting the incumbent Turkish government and its leaders and were against the failed coup.

In this globalized world, the failed coup in Turkey had an immediate impact on the Somali lives and politics. Immediately after the coup, Mogadishu’s local government asked hundreds of people to protest and demonstrate in public against the coup. Given the security situation in the city, these protesters were vulnerable to al-Shabaab attacks. To say the least, inundating the embassy with high, mid and low ranking public officials including but not limited to the Mayor, District Commissioners, Premier and Ministers was unnecessary as it further increased the risk. The President’s press release and the media coverage could suffice. This was not also good for the security of the embassy at this time when al-Shabaab leader recently voiced their dissatisfaction with Turkey’s involvement in Somalia. While the Somali Federal Government’s overwhelming support for the current Turkish government is justified, the manner in which such support was conveyed was not, as it compromised public safety.

In conclusion, the failed coup against the current ruling AKP and Turkish government revealed Turkey’s influence on Somali politics and public opinion. The motto seem to be ’wherever Turkey goes Somalia goes’ – at least for now!

Mahad Wasuge

 

 

In Somalia: Who is Purported to be a Politician?

400px-Somalia_Numbered_Regions

Somalia is a nation where its people often focus on discussing about the nature of politics. Those people also look forward to holding positions in the government, regardless of their educational status. We see almost all Somalis claim that they are well-versed in issues related to politics. Strangely enough, most of those people never admit they are ignorant of the rudimentary knowledge in politics.

When I was young, I remembered seeing a group of men who huddled to listen to the news at local teashops. At that time, B.B.C Somali Service had been the best station for Somali news and programs. Every time the BBC programs were off the air, people discussed, dissected and analyzed events of the day.

In the following section, I will be discussing from where the zeal of being a politician derived. Let me begin with the history of the conflict that I openly argue is the major reason behind the rise of this fervor.

Since the armed rebels toppled Barre regime from the office in 1991, Somalia descended into a painful decade of anarchy.  During these years of lawlessness, there was no any fully functioning government in Somali regions. In Djibouti, six faction leaders established the first Transitional Government in 2000. Somali political analysts pointed out that those decades of mayhem forced the country to experience different stages: the years of warlordism, the era of transitional governments, the genesis of the Islamic Court Union, and the incumbent non-transitional government.

In the wake of the birth of federalism in 2004, many regions began to rise in balkanized politics. In order to federate the country, regional states with separate presidents, ministers, deputy ministers and parliamentarians were formed. In addition to that, young Somalis from the Diaspora and the locals joined the government and held positions such as advisors, civil servants, and district commissioners.

All those above-cited factors forced many Somalis to take part in regional and provincial administrations in the country. The pressing circumstances that the country left many in complete confusion about who is a politician and who is a bureaucrat.  Unfortunately, the precise definition of the literal term “politician” is too mysterious for many.

In the theater of current politics, one may hear politicians who have previously held ministerial and parliamentary positions get appointed as chiefs of the national forces. In addition to that, civil servants as well as district commissioners may find themselves as genuine politicians. This generates confusion of who is a true politician or who is not. The question is, can a politician be a chief of a national force? Can we characterize the status of those regional governors, district commissioners, and civil servants as Somali politicians? It is crucial for us to discuss about finding candid answers to these questions.

Most Somalis who claim as politicians do not study politics as a discipline. I remember vividly a seminar that brought hundreds of students who were prepared to join a university back in 2009. Some students were asking one of the students who got enrolled in the faculty of Political Science why he decided to take that subject. The students argued that studying Politics required no university degree at all. This type of thinking is still prevalent in many parts of the country. Many of those joining the politics and the administration do not have enough understanding of what it is like politics and politicians.

My definition of the term is apparent. “Politician” is a person active in party politics who sets and influences public policy and decision-making. Such politician is one who seeks positions through legitimate means. These include cabinet ministers, and the parliamentarians, the leaders of registered political parties, if any, and the federal member state parliamentary and executive branches.

What is important for us to understand is that the head of the administration of ministers such as the General Directors, the head of departments and the other civil servants under his direction are not politicians although they influence public policy. They are public administrators / public bureaucrats, and their main responsibility is to implement the government policies. In addition, the governors of the administrative regions, the district commissioners, and the other subordinates are also part of public administration. They carry out the government’s policies and programs. Moreover, it is also imperative to comprehend that the national armed forces are far from being politicians. The roles of the chiefs of the armed forces are to keep up government’s security policies and the defense.

In conclusion, let us not mistake staff working for the government for being as bona fide politicians. If you want to be a politician, do not rely on only your clan affiliations, but invest yourself in education and study politics. This will help you avoid from making potential mistakes, and other faults that you are susceptible if you become a politician. Somalia does not need numerous politicians, but it needs competent and hard-working public administrators who can carry out the government’s policies effectively.

Mahad Wasuge

You can follow me on Twitter @MahadWasuge

Buulaburte: The Day of Rememberance

Buulaburte picture

I started writing this piece when I was listening to one of Dahir Ga’amey Somali songs that he composed after his visit to Buulaburte. In the song, he vividly described the natural beauty of the city – lyrics that resuscitated my dormant memory.

The story started as follows. One day I Googled Buulaburte. All of a sudden, countless images and songs popped up. I then clicked one of the songs listed on the top. Even though I don’t listen to songs that much, that day I watched the musical slide show, full of interesting pictures of the city and its residents.

Apart from the sweet tune of the song, images of the town were very captivating. Among those I saw in the musical slide show included my friends’ pictures with whom I used to play football. I also saw the historical bridge that was built sometime back in the 1937, the famous mosque in the middle of the town and many other places that resonated with my mind.

This was the exact moment when my mind started remembering the good old days in Buulaburte. For everyone, the place in where you were born and grew up is always unique. In Buulaburte, I spent from the day I was born until I left the city years ago to pursue my education.

I put off writing my piece for a moment because I was having flashbacks to my days in Buulaburte. Even after the song was over, I sat there silently as the pictures reminded me of my old friends and football teammates. There is no doubt that the town was good at all types of sport. Most importantly, Bulaburte produced the greatest football players in the region of Hiiraan before and after the civil war. Although I was not among those famous players, I used to play for Bagabeeso Junior,  team from my village, as a striker. Unfortunately, my teammates are now scattered all over the world, only a few have chosen to stay in the town no matter what the circumstances are. The picture of the mosque in the slide show touched my heart the most because it was from where I studied Quranic Tafseer, Prophetic Traditions (Hadiths), Islamic Jurisprudence (Fiqi) and Arabic Grammar (Nahwa). While I was having such emotional recollection, pictures of my friends, classmates, teachers of my Quranic Madrasa and Ahmed Gurey school were constantly before my eyes.

Unfortunately, that joy and remembrance of the good old days did not last that long. My mind started thinking about the present. This was the moment when the mood has changed into sadness. I started feeling pain. Many things have changed considerably ever since. The current situation is very different from what I experienced back in the day. Almost all of my colleagues left the town. Many migrated to Europe via the perilous trip to Libyan Desert and the Mediterranean Sea. Surprisingly, Bulaburte has become one of the most migrated cities in Somalia, with almost 95 percent of the young residents of my age left the city.

After years of peace and stability, the people of the town tasted the bitterness of the insecurity. In March 2014, Somali troops backed by the AMISOM contingent entered the town and forced Al-Shabab to flee. Buulaburte was one of Al Shabaab’s most stronghold towns, and they blocked all trade routes leading to and from Bulaburte were blocked. The trade blockage rendered the whole town standstill. Nearly one year and a half, the residents suffered as the price of the food and other commodities skyrocketed, and the situation of the poor families changed from bad to worse.

After more than a year of painful sufferings, a beacon of hope is once again on the horizon. Some of my friends who left the town some years ago are now organizing themselves to help the poor families. The first time in history, some young Reer Buulaay men and women in Europe are collecting money to give Iftar (fast-breaking meals) to the less priviledged in the upcoming Holy Month of Ramadan. This act of humanity and humility illustrate their social responsibility and compassion toward their people. Because of their assistance, we are grateful to them for their caring effort to contribute to their people. Their contribution gives a clear picture of how committed they are to assist Buulaburte residents. Regardless of the dire situation, people eventually started helping one another.

Half of my day ended with a mixed feeling as I sat there remembering about my good and bad days. I hope peace will come back to Buulaburte so that I shall get the opportunity to go back home and spend time with my family and friends sometime soon.

Mahad Wasuge

You can follow me on Twitter @MahadWasuge

Buulaburte: Maalintii Xusuusta

Buulaburte picture

Waxa aan bilaabay qoraalkan waqti aan dhageysanayay mid kamid ah heesaha Daahir Gacameey taas ee uu curiyay mar uu booqday Buulaburte. Heestan waxa uu fanaanka si qurux badan ugu qeexay quruxda dabiiciga ah ee magaalada.

Sheekada waxa ay ku bilaabatay sida soo socota. Maalin ayaan Google geliyay Buulaburte. Islamarkiiba sawirro iyo heeso tira badan ayaa iisoo muuqday. Kadib waxa aan ku dhuftay mid kamid ah heesaha kasoo muuqday xagga sare. Inkastoo aanan aad u dhageysanin heesaha, maalintaas waan daawaday heesta oo sawirro aad u xiiso badan oo magaalada iyo dadkii deganaaba ah ay la socdeen.

Marka lagasoo tago laxanka macaan ee heesta, sawirrada magaalada ayaa ahaa kuwo aad iisoo jiitay. Waxa kamid ahaa sawirradaas aan ku arkay heesta qaar kamid ah saaxiibbaday oo aan kubadda isla dheeli jirnay. Waxa aan sidoo kale arkay buundada taariiqiga ah ee la dhisay sanadkii 1937, masjidka caanka ah ee ku yaalla bartamaha magaalada iyo meelo kale oo aad u fara badan kuwaas oo maskaxdeyda dib u celiyay.

Markan ayay ahayd xilligii ay maskaxdeyda bilowday xusuusta maalmihii hore ee aadka u wacnaa. Qof waliba meesha uu ku dhasho kuna barbaaro waa mid si gaar ah u taabata. Buulaburte waxa aan ku noolaa tan iyo markii aan dhashay ilaa iyo intii aanan kasoo tagin sanado kahor si aan usii wato waxbarashadeysa.

Waan joojiyay qoraalka maqaalka waqti kooban sababtoo ah waxa aan dib u xusuusanayay maalmihii hore ee aan Buulaburte ku qaatay. Xitaa dhamaadka heesta kadib, waxa aan fadhiistay meel aniga oo aamusan maadaama ay sawirrada isoo xusuusiyeen saaxibbaday hore iyo kooxdaydii kubadda cagta. Buulaburte waxa ay soo saartay ciyaaryahannadii kubadda cagta ee ugu fiicnaa gobolka Hiiraan kahor iyo kadib dagaalkii sokeeye. Inkastoo aniga aanan kamid ahayn ciyaartoyda aad caanka u ahaa, waxa aan u dheeli jiray kooxda heerka labaad ee Bagabeeso oo xaafaddeyda ka dhisneyd oo aan weereryahan u ahaa. Nasiib darro kooxdaydii hadda waxa ay ku kala firirsantahay dunida, qaar aad u yar ayaa doortay in ay sii joogaan magaalada. Sidoo kale sawirka masjidka aad ayuu ii taabtay sababtoo ah waa meeshii aan ka bartay Tafsiirka Quraanka, Axaadiista Nabiga, Fiqiga iyo Naxwaha Carabiga. Intii aan xusuustaas ku jiray, sawirrada saaxiibbaday, ardadii fasalka ila dhigan jirtay, macallimiinteydii Quraanka iyo iskuulka Axmed Gureey ayaa i hor imaanayay.

Nasiib darro farxaddaas iyo xusuusta maalmihii hore ma sii waarin waqti badan. Maskaxdeyda waxa ay bilowday in ay ka fikirto xaalka magaalada ay ku sugantahay xilligan. Xaaladdayda waxa ay isku beddeshay murugo. Waxa aan bilaabay in aan dareemo xanuun. Wax badan ayaa is beddelay. Xaaladda hadda taagan aad ayay uga duwantahay muuqaalkii quruxda badnaa ee aan xusuusanayay. Inta badan saaxiibbaday magaalada waa ay ka tageen.  Qaar badan waxa ay u tahriibeen Yurub iyaga oo usii maraya marinka qatarta badan ee Saxaraha Liibiya iyo Badda Mediterranean. Buulaburte waxa ay noqotay mid kamid ah magaalooyinka aadka looga tahriibay Soomaaliya iyadoo qiyaastii 95% dhalinaradii degmada ee da’dayda ahaa ay ka tageen magaalada.

Kadib sanado ay ka jirtay nabad iyo xasilooni, dadka magaalada kunool waxa ay dhadhamiyeen qaraarka amni darrada. Bishii Maarso, ciidanka Soomaaliya oo ay la socdaan xoogagga AMISOM ayaa galay magaalada waxa ayna ka saareen Al shabaab oo xilligaas maamulayay. Buulaburte waxa ay ahayd mid kamid ah meelaha ay ku xooganyihiin Al shabaab, waxa ayna kadib xireen dhammaan waddooyinkii ganacsiga u mari lahaa magaalada. Xayiraadda waxa ay keentay in ganacsigii magaalada oo dhan uu istaago. Ku dhawaad sanad iyo bar dadka deegaanka waa ay dhibaatoonayaan qiimihii badeecadana cirka ayuu isku shareeray, xaaladda qoysaskii nolosha hooseeyana waa ay kasii dartay.

Kadib in ka badan sanad oo ay la diristay dhibaatooyin xanuun badan, calaamad rajo ayaa soo bishaameysa. Qaar kamid ah saaxiibbaday  ee ka tagay magaalada sanado kahor ayaa is abaabulaay si ay u caawiyaan qoysaska tabaaleysan. Markii ugu horeysay taariiqda degmada wiilal iyo gabdho Reer Buulaay ah ayaa ka shaqeynaya sidii ay ku afurin lahaayeen dadka tabaaleysan bisha foodda nagusoo heysa ee Ramadaanka. Tani waxa ay muujineysaa sida dhalinyaradii degmada ay masuuliyad iskaga saareen bulshada dhibaateysan. Waan u mahadcelineynaa dadaalkooda dheeraadka ah oo ay wax ku tarayaan dadkooda. Kaalmadooda waxa sawir dhab ah ay ka bixinayaa sida ay uga go’antahay in ay caawiyaan dadka degan Buulaburte. Si kasta oo uu xaalka u adagyahay, dadkii ayaa hadda bilaabay in ay iyaga dhexdooda is caawiyaan.

Qeyb kamid ah maalinteydii waxa ay ku dhamaatay dareen isku qasan maadaama aan soo xusuustay maalmihii wacnaa iyo xaaladda hadda kajirta degmada. Waxa aan rajeynayaa nabaddii in ay kusoo laaban doonto Buulaburte si aan fursad ugu helo in aan ku laabto islamarkaana la qaato waqti qoyskeyga iyo saaxiibbaday

Mahad Waasuge

Soomaaliya: Yaa ka masuul ah dhalinyarada tahriibeysa?

Tan iyo markii uu dagaalkii sokeeye ka qarxay Soomaaliya, dalka waxa uu galay nidaam darro jirtay muddo ka badan labaatan sano. Maadaama uu dagaalkii sokeeye sii dheeraaday, kumannaan qof ayaa ka carartay dalka si ay naftooda u badbaadiyaan. Kuwa dalka ka qaxay waxa kamid ahaa dhalinyaro isugu jiray rag iyo dumar.

Tan iyo bilowgii dagaalladaas, dalka waxa uu soo maray xaalado kala duwan oo qalalaase iyo nidaam darro ah. Wajiyada colaadaha waa ay is beddelayeen xaaladba xaaladda kadanbeysa. Tusaale ahaan, intii u dhexeysay 1991 ilaa 1994, hogaamiye kooxeedyadii ayaa dhexboodayay inta badan colaadaha, kadib waxa soo baxay taageerayaashii Maxaakiimtii Islaamka. Sidaas si lamid ah isbeddelka colaadaha waxa ay soo mareen xaalado dowlado kumeelgaar iyo dowlad rasmi ah oo aan kumeelgaar ahayn. Dalka waa uu kasoo kabanayay colaado ragaadiyay oo waxa la helayay iskuullo iyo jaamacado arday badan ayaana rajadooda waxbarasho sii kordheysay. Balse hal arrin lama aanan xallin: shaqasiinta dhalinyarada. Shaqa u abuurista dhalinyarada waxa ay aasaas u tahay nabadda iyo ammaanka waddan kasta waana mid kamid ah arrimaha siyaasadeed ee ka joojin kara dhalinyarada in ay tahriibaan naftoodana khatar geliyaan.

Tirakoobka ayaa sheegaya tirada dhalinyarada ku geeriyootay badda iyaga oo ku tahriibaya doomo yaryar oo aad leysaga buuxiyay in ay aad u badanyihiin. Kumannaan da’yar ah oo isugu jira rag iyo dumar  ayaa sidoo kale u tahriibay waddamada deriska ah halkaas oo ay kala kulmeen geeri iyo duruufo nololeed oo aad u adag.

Si loo yareeyo tirada aadka u badan ee tahriibka ku dhimaneysa, dad badan waxa ay rajeynayeen kadib doorashadii dowladdii ugu horeysay ee aan kumeelgaarka ahayn in ay yaraan doonto tirada dhalinyarada tahriibeysa. Nasiib darro, dowladda ma aanay la iman siyaasad iyo barnaamijyo cad-cad oo quseeysa dhalinyarada shaqana uma aanay abuurin. Haddii shaqo loo abuuri lahaa, waxa ay yareyn lahayd tahriibka dhalinyarada.

Isla sababtaas iyaga oo ka duulaya, ayaa waxa aad u kordhay dhalinyarada u tahriibeysa yurub dhawaanahan. Dhabaha ay u marayaan yurub waa saxaraha dhibka badan ee Libiya iyo badda Mediterranean. Si aan wax badan uga ogaado tahriibka dhalinyarada maalmahan socda, waxa aan la kulmay qaar kamid ah dhalinyaro isku diyaarinayay in ay galaan safarkan khatarta badan. Mid kamid aha ayaa waxa uu igu yiri, “shaqo la’aanta baahsan ee kajirta dalka awgeed, waxa aan qatar gelineynaa nafteenna si aan u helno nolol ka fiican tan aan ku noolnahay”. Waa uu sii hadlay oo uu yiri, “waxa aan u baahannahay shaqo si aan u guursanno, mustaqbal fiicanna u hiigsanno balse ma sii joogi karno waddan dhalinyaradii jaamacadaha dhameeyay aanay shaqo heysan”.

Dhalinyarada aan la hadlay waxa ay ku celceliyeen baahsanaanta qabiil jecleysiga Dawladda Soomaaliya oo shaqaalaha lagu xusho hab beeleed. “Wax macna ah ma sameyneyso haddii aad tahay qof awood, aqoon, iyo khibradba u leh  shaqo dawladda ka bannaan, qaraabo kiil ayaa shaqeynaya”. Saaxiib aad ugu dhaw dawladda oo ila hadlay ayaa ii sheegay.

Inkastoo ay jirto dhalinyaro aad u tira badan oo jaamacadaha dhameeyay haddana aan shaqo heysanin, ma jirto siyaasad dhalinyaro ee shaqeyneysa una abuureysa dhalinyarada fursado shaqo. Su’aasha waxa ay tahay, maxay ka qabatay Dawladda Federaalka Soomaaliya yareynta shaqo la’aanta? Waxa la yaab leh hal hay’ad oo ay Turkey leedahay ayaa 450 dhalinyaro oo ka kala yimid koonfurta iyo bartamaha Soomaaliya ku tababartay xirfadaha waxbeerashada. Sidoo kale waxa ay siiyeen qalabkii  lagamamaarmaanka ahaa si ay ugu shaqeystaan xirfadihii la baray. Maadaama dhalinyaradaas la caawiyay, kama tagi doonaan dalkooda. Caawinaadda iyo tababarkaas la siiyay ayaana keenay in ay dareemaan in la siiyay awood ay ku shaqeystaan.

Tiraboob la sameeyay ayaa sheegaya in 70% Soomaalida ay da’dooda ka yartahay 30 sano. Sidaas cagsideeda Dawladda federaalka Soomaaliya waxa ay ku guuldareysatay in ay garawsato awoodda dhalinyarada. Horumarka fog ee waddan kasta waxa lagu qiimeeyaa sida dhalinyaradiisa loo maalgeliyo. Haddii jiilkeenna da’da yar ay sii wadaan in ay tahriibaan, tani macnaheeda waxa waaye mustaqbalka waddanka in uu dhibaatooyin wajahi doono.

Ugu danbeyn, Soomaalida waa in ay u istaagtaa maalgashiga dhalinyarada iyaga oo waxbaraya, islamarkaana u abuuraya fursado shaqo. Dhalinyarada waxa ay dhadhamiyeen qaraarka sharci la’aanta, dagaallada, iyo xaaladihii adkaa ee ka dhashay. Dawladda waa in ay siisaa shaqo dhalinyarada haddii ay leeyihiin aqoontii iyo xirfaddii looga baahnaa shaqadaas iyaga oo aan heybtooda lagu kala soocin. Dhalinyarada maanta waa hogaanka berrito.

Mahad Wasuge

Mahad.wasuge@gmail.com

Somalia: Who is Responsible for the Immigrating Youth?

Since the civil war broke out in Somalia, the country descended into lawlessness over twenty years. Because of the prolonged civil war, thousands of people fled the country to salvage their lives. Among those fled were the young men and women.

Since the inception of the war, the country has undergone different facets of chaos and lawlessness. Therefore, the trajectory of the conflict always changed from one situation to another. For instance, between 1991 and 1994, factional warlords perpetuated most conflicts and then proponents of the Islamic courts arose between 1994 and 1998. Similarly, transformation of conflict also witnessed the period of transitional governments to non-transitional federal government. More importantly, the country was recovering from the grip of conflict slowly at affordable schools and universities mushroomed in the country. Among many students, the hope of education has steadily been prevalent. Sadly, one issue was never fixed: youth employment. Youth employment is the foundation of peace and security in every country and it is one of the most important policy issues that can stop youth from migrating to other countries and risking their lives.

Statistics demonstrate that the number of Somali youth who died in seas while emigrating in flimsy and overcrowded boats is very high. Thousands of young men and women also migrated to neighboring countries where they were subject to death and other difficult circumstances.

In order to contain the rising number of exodus-related deaths, many hoped for the Somalia’s first non-transitional government that was elected would reduce the number of youth migrating. Unfortunately, the government neither brought sound and effective youth policies and programs nor created jobs. If jobs were generated, youth migration might have been lessened.

For the same reason, the number of youth migrating to Europe also increased recently. The route to which they reach to Europe is to travel through the vast Libyan desert and the Mediterranean Sea. In order for me to learn more about recent youth adventurous migration, I met a few young men who were prepared to set up their perilous trip. One of those men said, “Because of the rampant unemployment in the country, we are risking ourselves just to seek a better life in the West”. He went on to say. “We need jobs so we could get married and lead a bright future, and we cannot stay stuck in a country where even the graduates remain unemployed.”

The youth with whom I talked echoed the prevalence of clan favoritism in the Somalia government where employees are hired on clan basis. “No matter how competent, educated, experienced, and suitable you are for vacant positions in the government, nepotism is the rule.” A close friend who spoke to me on the condition of anonymity said.

Although there is a high rate of unemployed fresh graduates in the market, there is no active national youth policy that creates job opportunities for the youth. The question is, what the incumbent Somali Federal Government has done so far to bridge the widening unemployment gap? Ironically, one Turkish organization trained 450 youths across southern and central regions to acquire skills required for agriculture. They also offered the youth equipments and tools needed that might give them the opportunity to work on their own. Had those young men and women were assisted in the first place, they would not have left their own home country. The assistance and trainings helped them to feel empowered.

Statistics show that 70% of the Somali population is under 30 years. Paradoxically the government failed to realize the youth’s potential energy. The country’s long-term progress is valued on the basis of how its youth’s power and potentialities are invested and harnessed. If our younger generation continues to emigrate en masse, this could mean the future of the country will be in crisis.

In a nutshell, Somalis should stand investing youth empowerment by educating, training, and creating employment opportunities. They have tasted the bitterness of lawlessness, wars, and difficult circumstances. The government should offer its youth employment if they get the knowledge and the skills required for job openings without discrimination. Today’s youth are the leaders of tomorrow.

Mahad Wasuge

mahad.wasuge@gmail.com