SOMALIA: Possible Scenarios of the election outcome
Possible Scenarios of the election outcome
By Said Faadi
August 19 2012
For the first time in history, the August elections will be issue-based and detribalised. It will be a contest between opposing political theories.
There could be more but I will analytically construct four possible Scenarios around the eventual outcome of the elections. These are Federalists triumphing, Centralists winning, muddling through a middle course and the demons conquering.
But care must be taken here. I am not, I declare, a wizard or fortune-teller who predicts the future with a degree of“precision”. I will only utilize the power of Scenario-based analysis to create a picture of possible futures. In other words, I am not making an accurate prediction but trying to stimulate strategic thought of possible consequences of the building up alliances.
Before I expand on my scenarios with analysis, allow me to send a congratulatory word to Technical Selection Committee (TSC) of the new Parliamentarians.
The TSC, by design or by accident, turned to be the“moral champion” of the new constitution. They epitomised to us – me and you -the disposition of the “model citizenry” envisaged in the new Constitutional dispensation.
The seismic wave sent by their rejection of the unqualified people, murderers, warlords and thieves to join the new members of the Parliament is felt in the four corners of the country.
They fearlessly slaughtered the “sacred cows” of impunity with relish. It was so painful, for it was too personal.
Our big men with the small dreams have finally met their waterloo. That is why they are panicking. Nobody knows what will happen next. The Selection Committee has technically implicated them with a mega corruption and crimes against humanity.
That is why I will not surprise if the International Criminal Court moves in for a manhunt. I believe, they have a bone to “chew”with the ICC.
I have looked at the names in TSC’s “list of shame”and I can confirm – with the benefit of double – that they are all characters with questionable background.
With the absence of thorough criminal auditing, I know, I know the names, I saw in the list, have genuine criminal cases to answer. They say, where there is smoke, there is a fire.
Of course, they are innocent until proven guilty but we cannot afford to be held hostage for another decade by few individuals. For goodness sake, let them carry their own cross. And let the country move on with the next item in the Road Map – to end the transition on time.
Let us now come back to the Scenarios.
Scenario One: Centralists wining
In this Scenario, Professor Samater will march his centralist brigade to victory. Need I remind you that Somali political pundits are sharply divided between the idea of Federalism and Centralised Unity State.
Notwithstanding the provisionally endorsed Constitution of Somalia is founded on Multi-Regional Federal System of government, many politicians – and leading presidential candidates – are neither contented nor “politically correct” with Federalism.
If this group assumes power, the verdict of the Constitutional Assembly Delegates will be reverse – Pronto.
In this squad, Professors Samater is unarguably the captain and chief-ideologue. If elected, he will most likely pick the controversial former BBC Somali Section boss – Yusuf Garad Omar Ahmed – as a Prime Minster. The cantankerous“political” journalist is a good student of the Professor.
With the Professor and his student on the driving seat, Somalia will have a Centralist government full of vigour and vitality.
In this Scenario, the ethnic based regional enclaves will spell the biggest trouble. The established regional administrations such Puntland and Somaliland will start counting the cost.
It will be a mind-boggling puzzle to reconcile the crude dogma of centralists and the foregone conclusion of Federalism in the case of Puntland and Secession in the case of Somaliland.
But I have no doubt that viable centralised institutions will take root in the rest of the country under the watch of the duo.
Scenario Two: Federalists triumphing
The de facto principals of the federalist line-up are Prime Minister Gaas and Dr Abdirahman Badiyaw. There is no empirical evidence to support the loose alliance between the two candidates. But on anecdotal accounts, we can postulate the two presidential hopefuls are politically attuned.
In their electoral Manifesto, both candidates pledged to maintain unwavering fidelity for the new Federal Constitution. They are both comfortable with a federal system of governance to be effected in Somalia. Their political constituencies are coincidently “politically correct”with Federalism.
Their combination presents the best Scenario for effectively implementation of the new constitution.
Under their leadership, there is no dispute, whatsoever, that Somalia will fully embrace Federalism in its truest meaning.
Scenario three: Muddling through a middle course
In this scenario, President Sharif will defend his current title. This means, the current state of affair will be “business as usual”. The country will remain constitutionally Federal but the system will carry on much as before until the next “selections” – not elections.
President Sharif will most likely return former Prime Minister M.A. Farmajo as a Premier.
Sharif-Farmajo administration will steer through a middle course. We will have a hybrid system that neither tilts to Federalism nor strong central government. This is something similar to current incompetent system, more or less.
The outcome of this Scenario will not impress the International Community. There will be inevitable boredom and fatigue among the donor communities. The spirit and morale of AMISOM troops to take on Al-shabab may also fade out.
In this Scenario, country’s journey to enduring peace and stability will be slaw and tedious.
Scenario Four: The Demons conquering
This is the worst case scenario. It is relatively“doomsday” scenario where the transition process surrenders to its worst taste.
In this Scenario, either the Speaker of parliament Sharif Hassan Sheik Adan or former Assistance Minister of Defence Salad Ali Jelle or the one-week “Prime Minster” Mohamoud Guled Gacmo-Dheere or any other deep-pocketed warlord conquers the world with cash.
Although, this is an implausible and unlikely Scenario but I cannot rule out its possibility at this point of time. Everything is possible in the shark infested politics of Somalia.
Finally, I hope the best case Scenario and the worst case Scenario are now obvious. Let us be vigilant as sentry on duty –
By Said Faadi
The author is a topical commentator
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Raxanreeb’s editorial policy.