Garowe, 8, 2019
“Democracy dies in the dark”
GAROWE talks between the leaders of Somali Central Government and member states of the Federal Government have been taking place at Puntland Presidency for several days now in complete and unprecented secrecy. The nation doesn’t have a clue on what is being discussed on its behalf.
Leaders at talks had even excluded their own members of respective delegations from the talks. The talks are off-limit to senior political advisors and experts. No lawyers or economists are available or needed there. It is a gathering of laymen as leaders of a nation in trouble, where fundamental issues of nation-building are being deliberated with no inputs from subject matter experts. It is a gathering where knowledge, experience on statecraft and history are not required. It turned out to be a few laymen in closed door session. It is suspicious and worrisome to the members of the general public. It is unsettling to the members of various delegations to Garowe Meeting from Mogadishu, Kismayo, Baydhaba, DusaMareb and Jowhar as well as members at all levels of Puntland Government.
Local and international Media outlets are being kept in the dark. Nobody knows what is being cooked up in a secret room in Puntland Presidency. The entire Somali nation is shut off to follow the progress or even the agenda of the GAROWE Meeting. The talks look like board-room bargaining, debating on how to divide and share stocks among some wealthy traders. Positive outcome expected from this secret meeting, therefore, is as good as micromort.
It doesn’t sound right. We demand the right to know what is being debated on our behalf as a nation. We demand daily briefing of what is being discussed at Garowe Gathering.