Somalia needs a new direction

Published: May 16, 2011


Today, we are living in a world of diversity where culture is getting lost in trans-international cross-cultural living. We have seen families which are started by internet connections, children produced by invitro-fertilization, testube families and many new scientific discoveries which are in many large laboratories of the world.
Studies about the space is so exciting where I always wonder how much money is spent to send one spaceship in to the space. Researching the marine life and all that is happening under water and at the poles.  The study of Global-warming, one wonders how all that is affecting life in the universe. Globalization, modernization, the technological advancement including the computer study is developing on a weekly and a daily basis with new findings.
The question is where are we Somalis? Are we with the world? Infact, we are backward. We confused and shocked the whole world by committing every kind of human rights violations including killing, torture, rape, illegal detention, physical assault, discrimination, prevention of access to humanitarian assistance and many other unacceptable human rights abuses.
The foreign vessels dump toxic waste including nuclear waste to our waters which is a health hazard to our people in the short or long term, and which also killed fish in the Somali waters. And we don’t have a strong government or coast guard to protect against fishing trawlers from other countries illegally fishing. This led to the erosion of the fish stock . Severely constrained the ability of locals to earn a living and forced many to turn to pirates instead, which is another armed group worsening the situation of the country and which is a threat to international shipping. Piracy activities in our country contributed to an increase in shipping costs and impeded the delivery of food aid shipments. And Since 2007, many international organizations, including the International Maritime Organization and the World Food Programme, have expressed concern over the rise in acts of piracy.
Our country is viewed as the most corrupted country in the world, where bribery is given to public officials, kickbacks in public procurement, embezzlement of public funds where it is diverted in to individual pockets and accounts. I believe the first corrupted group are the MPs ( members of parliament ). Most of them are not academically competent and qualified for their posts. Some have never attended school and it is risk to be led by an ignorant person as he/she can take you to the wrong direction; and that is exactly what is happening in the Somali parliament where most of them are there to satisfy only their personal/economic interest. The unilateral decision taken by the Somali parliament in which they extended their term in office irritated and dismayed many Somalis and clearly damaged their international credibility. They obviously tampered with the law and their decision was unconstitutional and can be considered as an exercise of a power abuse.
Our people flee daily from their habitual residence in search of a better life only to find suffering and death risking their lives taking rickety timber boats to Italy or Yemen.  Many Somalis lost their lives during this risk immigration process. Many of our girls are raped on the way. Our morals and our name is spoiled. And all these is caused by the escalating conflict between the insurgent groups and the government. The insurgents forcefully recruit the youth in to their army by misinterpreting the Islamic doctorines and deceiving their minds and hearts where the youth were left no option but to flee.
When you see the picture of our Capital City Mogadisho. It looks like “a ghost city”. When one thinks of Somalia, what comes in to the mind is the images of pirates, warlords, violent groups, corruption, poverty and famine. We are always asked. You are people of the same language and religion, why are you fighting ? And most of us find it difficult to answer this question.
Our people suffered a lot and need a new direction, new chapter so as to get out of the misery. And the fighting groups should reconcile their differences through peaceful means and not through the use of force, and they should form a political party to participate in the political process rather than using armed struggle as a means of getting to power.
The government need to proceed with a Somali owned reconciliation process before the end of its term, reach out to the opposition groups with a national agenda and stop extending the term in office.
The government should also contribute to the humanitarian and development initiatives such as the rebuilding the infrastructure including hospitals, roads and schools.
And The International Community should Support a Somali led solution to the political process in Somalia and put an end to the last twenty years’ de facto policy and support an alternative approach to ensure accountability and sustainable plan to bring about legitimate governance and functioning government institutions.
Osman Jabane
Osman Jabane is a political analyst

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *