Somalia: Has Puntland manipulated MPs selection process
Has Puntland manipulated MPs selection process?
By Liban Ahmad
Th dispute over selection of Members of Parliament from Dhulbahante sub-clan between Puntland and Khaatumo administrations shows an element of clan fanaticism with which Somalia’s post-transition leaders will have to grapple. The easy but wrong solution to this dispute is to blame one administration for claiming to have more representation privileges than it is entitled to. Puntland president justified MPs allegedly ” asurped’ by Puntland on grounds of division among the Dhulbahante sub-clan.
Two traditional leaders at the heart of this dispute are Mohamud Haji Omar Amay and Abdullahi Ahmed Ali Dabagooye participated in Khaatumo conference in Taleh in January. They have not opposed Khaatumo but may have some political differences with Khaatumo’s major decision makers ( some traditional leaders and career politicians). Mohamud Amay and Abdullahi Dabagooye are known to maintain ties with Puntland. There was no provision in Khaatumo charter outlawing elders to maintain ties with Puntland as long as they do not oppose Khaatumo administration.
The onus was on both Khaatumo and Puntland leaders: Khaatumo leaders should have never questioned the right of the two prominent traditional leaders to select two MPs; Punland president, Farole, and prime minister Dr Abdiweli Ali , also from Puntland, should have distanced themselves from influencing the process of selecting MPs to avoid accusations that they faked or are exploiting Dhulbahante split to let Puntland have the privilege to select two pro-Puntland MPs.
By using raw political power traditional and political leaders of Khaatumo have forgotten the bigger picture of allowing two genuine traditional leaders ( Amay and Dabagooye) to have a role in selecting MPs for people whose districts and hamlets are claimed by two administrations (Puntland and Somaliland).
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Raxanreeb’s editorial policy.