A DANGEROUS UN SITE IN GAROWE TO AVOID


October 3, 2019

I was driving west on my way to a joint inauguration of new traditional leader, Ali Said Samater and Chief Elder, Adirizak Haji Awil Isse, of Omar Muse, sub-clan of Dir clan, in Puntland State of Somalia.

Before reaching my destination at Hiddo-Raac resort, about 20 Kms off to the west of Garowe, the State Capital of Puntland, I had to stop in the way. To dress up for the event, I had to put on my suit tie, which was in the gloves compartment of my vehicle. I came to halt at a free space between the compound of UNPOS Garowe and Amal Bank. Unaware that this spot was the most dangerous in town. I was putting on my suit tie, when a uniformed man approached my vehicle cautiously to make sure that I wasn’t exploding in a suicide bomb-blast.

In a saddened voice, and perhaps, silently thanking Allah for my safety, he asked me “what are you doing here”, after I pulled down my side window? I said nothing other than “what is wrong here”? He asked me, “don’t you see you are on the cross-hairs of a gun”? “What”? I looked up at my left. Exactly, there was a guard on the top of UNPOS compound, aiming at me, ready to shoot to kill. I quickly drove away, not daring to signal left, moving improperly onto the road. Momentarily, I glanced at guard still aiming at me. I was extremely lucky. Allah meant me to live on. Paradoxically, the New Sultan is a local employee of the UN.

There were a number of times that I had noticed UN security personnel were over-reacting and engaged in unproportional security precautions that make Garowe look like Mogadishu. I understand that there were a few security incidents in as many years during the entire existence of Puntland, but not to that extent that the UN Garowe is show- casing now in a peaceful city. Garowe is much safer than the Nairobi they are fond of. I fully understand, however, UN presence in Garowe, as in any other town in Somalia, justifies their employment and careers in a way a Nairobi security incident couldn’t impact them, but, they are too over-protective, triger-happy and security paranoid to endanger innocent lives by accident.

Glad to inform you that the inauguration of Sultan Cali Said Samater and Elder Abdirisaaq Xaaji Cawil, went exceedingly well with the attendance of large group of Puntland prominent traditional leaders, elders and large crowd of popular supporters. Congratulations to the traditional leaders of Cumar Muuse, Dir, Puntland!

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PUNTLAND: ABSENCE OF COHERENT STATE POLICY


October 3, 2019


Could anybody pinpoint the policy objectives of Puntland Government on the way forward locally and nationally? If you can do, share these policy goals with us.


I don’t see a Policy Paper on what Puntland State is doing or intends to do for all its residents to know and work towards achieving these objectives involving socio-economic targets; formulating State policy towards the rogue policies of the Federal Government; General Election 2020/21; its relationships and coordination with other Federal Member States; working with international partners and organizations; security and stability of Puntland State, among other issues of vital importance.


Puntland State seems unable or reluctant to formulate adequately a coherent policy on her political differences with the Mogadishu Regime, thus creating a confusion in the minds of Puntland people as from whom they take the political lead in going forward with regards to Somali national and local affairs. It looks that the State is in permanent political limbo situation. This is isn’t acceptable as it is dangerous – citizens not knowing where their country is heading to, how to help the State and what to hope for.

 
President Said Abdullahi Deni and his administration officials should know that the status quo is no longer acceptable, and that Puntland couldn’t stay put to wait for something happening to her, instead of Puntland State leading something to happen and shaping its future and that of Somalia.


There should be a White Paper on Puntland’s political objectives and actions to back them up. This should come out upon studies and thoughtful deliberations to produce serious policy alternatives on pressing issues of the State and Somalia. There should be mass communication strategy to inform Puntland general public and that of the people of Somalia and international community. Get the confusion and dilemmas out of the way. Puntland shouldn’t be playing Proverbial Ostrich.

“Finally, it is highly recommendable to recall all Puntland representatives, members of Federal Parliament and the Senate to come home for urgent consultations as a first step to work out a new Puntland strategic policy”


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