Somalia: Federal Govt meddling in Puntland, Somaliland
GAROWE, Somalia, January 16, 2016 (Garowe Online)-Somalia’s Federal Government has begun interfering with local matters in northeastern Puntland and breakaway Somaliland region according to well-informed sources.
Federal Govt has dispatched a delegation led by self-declared Khaatumo administration leader and former Federal Member of Parliament Ali Khalif Khalif Galaydh to Sool and Sanaag regions in a bid to shore up a support for interim parallel administration. The delegation that has also included lawmakers hailing from the two regions, had been trying to stage state-formation convention.
Khaatumo supporters previously weighed in on holding the controversial conference in Bali’ad where Somaliland forces moved in advance to dismantle the gathering spearheaded by Galaydh.
Somaliland President Ahmed Mohamed Mohamud Siilaanyo was quick to lambaste Mogadishu for orchestrating threats against Somaliland existence in the region in an annual presidential address to parliament and house of elders.
Khaatumo presidential claimant, who has for long sought a political legitimacy, has been told to first off achieve understanding and a united stance among inhabitants residing in Sool, Sanaag and Ayn regions during meetings with federal government officials in Mogadishu.
Meanwhile in Bossaso port city, local clans have been up in arms over alleged marginalization in regional corridors of power and lucrative contracts lopsidedly given to favored sides in the state’s most populous city.
Political grievances in vast Bari region are mainly centred around sub-contracts regarding gigantic Bossaso airport upgrade, mandates of Bari regional police commander, other key government posts and land disputes raging on between locals.
“In the center of prevailing frustration, [President] Hassan Sheikh’s administration is manipulating behind the scenes and uses Bari natives with links to Mogadishu,” a mediating clan elder told GO on condition of anonymity.
Puntland President who is now on visit to Kismayo is expected to return to Bossaso for discussions on reports of rife corruption with traditional leaders.
The interference comes amid intense political jockeying as President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud is concentrating on another grip that may see him re-elected to office over the next four years.
Former Minister for Constitution and President Mohamud’s right hand man, Farah Sheikh Abdulkadir is believed to be ardently campaigning for the political schism against the backdrop of ongoing consultations over viable electoral transition by 2016, GO has learned.
President Mohamud’s administration meddled in 2014 Puntland presidential elections, sabotaging state’s first-ever direct elections and propping up some contenders with colossal cash.