Somalia: Puntland President Abdiweli Gaas names new Cabinet members

Published: January 28, 2014
Chief of Staff Dek Yusuf read the Presidential decree in a Press Conference/ Horseed Media
Chief of Cabinet Dek Yusuf read the Presidential decree in a Press Conference/ Horseed Media

Puntland President Dr Abdiweli Mohamed Ali Gas has on Tuesday evening revealed his new cabinet containing 46-ministers in total.

The new cabinet is composed of 18-ministers, 19 deputy ministers and 9 state ministers. The Chief of Cabinet Mr Deeq Suleiman Yusuf read the Presidential decree in a Press Conference held at the Presidential Palace, Garowe.

The new line-up is dominated by new faces and individuals who held Cabinet positions in the previous government.  MPs drawn from the parliament are also included,  among them is the previous Parliament Speaker Abdirashid Mohamed Hirsi who was named as the Minister of Public Works.

Among the new cabinets are also previous Presidential candidates who were appointed as follows;

Ali Haji Warsame- Ministry of Education
Dr Sadik Enow- Ministry of Health
Shire Haji Farah- Ministry of Finance

Meanwhile, President Gaas’s earlier promises to give women a significant role in the government have hit a snag. The new cabinet has only two Ministers out of 18 and three Deputy Ministers out of 19.  However, many people in Puntland say it is a good step forward, comparing to past cabinets.

One of the newly appointed ministers has been given the traditional portfolio of women’s affairs, and the other has been appointed as the Minister of Constitution, Federal Affairs and Democratization. This ministry is seen as a vital role as new Government is seeking to lead Puntland to a new era of Democratization, stepping out of the current clannish system.

The International Community has been campaigning for a significant role of the women in the new cabinet, among them is the UN envoy to Somalia Nicklas Kay who previously urged the New President the women to play a wide role in the cabinet.

Former Khatumo Administration Presidents, Ahmed Ilmi Osman Karash and Abdinur Ilmi Bindhe also appeared in the new Cabinet’s list, and were named as Ministries of Interior and Fisheries.

The President is expected to present his cabinet and its program to the parliament in next few days when a vote of confidence will be carried out to endorse or reject the new ministerial line-up.

President Abdiweli Gaas had previously made public statements about the new cabinet,  revealing that they will be much less than the previous Government of Abdirahman Farole and more experienced, but analysts believe that the new government has been enlarged in order to balance clan interests, the President was facing pressure from Clan elders in the past weeks.

Ayub Abdirahman
Horseed Media

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