Somalia: Puntland's outgoing leader adding fuel to the fire" with new appointments  


GAROWE, Somalia - The president of the Puntland state, Said Abdullahi Deni, has appointed new officials, while sacking others, including the powerful General Jim’ale Jama Takar who emerged recently as a prominent figure leading the opposition forces in Garowe.
Taker was replaced with Qasim Jama Shire who hails from his sub-clan. The appointment came after a deadly fighting in Garowe last Tuesday, which was triggered by a dispute over constitutional amendment in Puntland ahead of the 8th Jan. 2024 presidential election.

Experts believe that replacing Takar will not bring any results, as he is a commander already outside of Deni's term-ending administration, and has not been working under his orders. Shire's appointment is intended to be used as a tool to create opposing sides that will eventually lead to an armed conflict between the two general's community in Nugal region.

Meanwhile, Deni made changes in the director generals of the ministries. He appointed new directors for finance, disaster management, animal husbandry, home affairs, security, planning, environment, agriculture and fisheries.

He appointed the accountant general of Puntland, the director of the ministry of finance and other officials, and this action comes at a time when the ministry has not paid the salaries of the army and civil servants for 6 months. Deni is accused of directly managing the government treasury.

Also, the outgoing president replaced the governor of Nugal region and the commander of the provincial police. He also appointed army officers and advisors, in an attempt to reduce the political and security burden in Garowe, where the politicians from the region have opposed his plans for elections and the opening of the constitution.

President Deni has removed individuals he suspects of having close ties with the opposition politicians, who rejected his attempt to extend term beyond his 5 year mandate, ending in Jan 2024.

This appointment has come at a time Garowe is facing a political tension that has escalated after Deni went ahead with his plans to amend the constitution with the support of the parliament leadership. 

The Garowe clash between the UAE-funded Puntland Maritime Police Force (PMPF) and military units supporting the opposition resulted in the deaths of more than 20 people on Tuesday, according to medics.

The security experts, speaking to Garowe Online warned that the sacking of Gen Jimale, who staged the mutiny could spark new conflict in Garowe. Jimale, is the commander of Puntland's Danab force.


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