Somalia continues frequent security reshuffle amid ‘uptick' in terrorist attacks


MOGADISHU, Somalia - Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo has on Thursday reshuffled key security officials, reinstate former army chief, Garowe Online reports.

In a Presidential decree, Farmajo announced the appointment of General Dahir Adan Indha-Qarshe who led the force during the tenure of ex-President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud.

Indha-Qarshe replaces General Abdiweli Jama Gorod. No reason was given for the surprise reshuffle which was the latest in series of changes to the security organs amid an uptick in Al-Shabab attacks.

On October 12, 2017, the Minister of Defense, Abdirashid Abdullahi Mohamed has resigned, citing lack of consultations on issues related to his ministry.

His resignation followed the exit of army chief General Mohamed Ahmed Jimale [Irfid] who submitted his resignation to the president. Jimale who was replaced by Abdiweli Jama Gorod.

General Irfid who led the force for six months has been accused of failure in the plan to prepare the national army take over security responsibility in the country from AU troops [AMISOM].

November 2017, Mohammed Mursal Abdirahman was appointed the new Minister of Defence who also resigned after only four months in office to vie for the position of the speaker.

In April 2018, President Farmajo selected Hasan Ali Mohammed ‘Amar-dambe’, a Member of Parliament as the minister of Defense as the extremists launched raids on several army positions.

Mohamed is said to have not any experience in handling critical matters like Security in a country that has suffered from lawlessness and armed conflict since 1991.

The National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA), has had two heads since 2017. The last revision which saw the removal of Sanbaloolshe from the spy agency has had an impact on stabilizing the country’s security.

Over the last couple of weeks, two deputy heads were suspended from the agency while security forces raided the office of one of two.

Since President Farmajo took power in February 2017, the country has had three defence ministers, three chiefs of staff, three heads of the force and two police bosses.

These changes come at a time when countries supporting the takeover of primary security responsibilities by Somali forces have asked the government to come up with a comprehensive and enabling framework without creating security vacuum for al-Qaeda linked al-Shabaab.

The reshuffle also comes when there is a rift between the federal government and Jubaland state. The executive appointed new Military chiefs for Jubaland and Gedo regions without consultation with the local government.

Already, the militant group Al-Shabab is getting stronger, having taken over a number of major towns and have increased their attacks in the capital.