Somali: The race for post-transition presidency
The race for post-transition presidency
By Liban Ahmad
Which presidential candidate will win behind-the-scenes support of the international community? Difficult to know but the international community will support candidates who fully support AMISOM role, argues our columnist.
The race to become Somalia’s post-transition president has entered a new stage. Current and former incumbents ( the president, the prime minister and the former prime minister) are relying on their political fortunes but a group of independent contenders have formed Bahwadaagta Qaran ee Isbeddeldoonka (National Alliance for Change). Almost all of them reside in the the Western Europe and north America; one of them was once a presidential adviser for president Sharif Ahmed.
The international community is looking at ways to make the outcome in line with its objectives. How? By taking advantage of the weakness of each candidate . This will be an experiment in engineering political outcomes in an environment where political contenders lack political legitimacy nationwide but depend on external forces for their political survival.
What chance does president Sharif stand to win the presidential selection by the new MPs in this month? Assuming that the international community ignores the president’s failure to show statesman qualities ( allowing for equal access to government-controlled media for political campaigning by all candidates or speaking to the public throughout Somalia to explain his motive for a new presidential term and how a new term would transform Somalia), president Sharif faces formidable challenges in the form of political alliances eager to offset alleged political interference in the selection of MPs. If the international community ( his backers) deems his pre-selection political campaigning to be deplorable campaign strategy, the international community may support candidates who share political aims and who view AMISOM as enabling force rather than a constraining force.
Disclosure: Liban Ahmad, raxanreeb.com columnist, endorsed president Sharif.