SOMALIA IN SEARCH OF STATEHOOD
THE STATE, NATIONALISM AND CLANS
By Ismail H Warsame
Coming up in both paperback and digital formats in July 1st, 2022.
The name Somalia as a united entity is relatively a new term, following the beginning of colonial administrations in the country. Clannism in Somalia isn’t the core problem of state building, but a symptom of system vulnerability in governance in regulatory fashion: For example, the separation of state and clan allegiance in public service in the same manner the Western World managed to do on the separation of the state and the church. Here you can keep your clan belonging, but don’t mix it with public service. It would be a violation of the state law if you do it. Therefore, there is a mismanagement and lack of regulations on the clan system in Somalia. Tendency in Somalia’s governance to tyranny and dictatorship is fear of losing state control. Anti-decentralization or anti-federalism is a paranoid of losing central state power. Under these fears, stakeholders in national matters are unnecessary nuisance to central authorities. Nationalism means distraction from difficult issues of nation-building and necessary national development projects expected of state leaders. Patriotism, promotion of Somalia’s cause and learning Somali history aren’t encouraged. Power-sharing is misused to weaken meritocracy and competence, leading to the consolidation of a client state and patronage in public service. Checks and balance of power between branches of the government is perceived in Somalia as a power struggle and a threat to those in executive positions.
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