Somalia: PM Roble holds first full cabinet meeting
MOGADISHU, Somalia - Newly appointed Somali Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble held the first full cabinet meeting on Saturday just hours after the ministers took the oath of office, following approval by the Lower House, which is mandated to vet key government appointments.
The 27-member cabinet consists of four women and most of those who made it were still members of the previous cabinet under former Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire. The former PM was hounded from the office over claims that he failed to organize one-person-one-vote elections which were due this year.
And as a compromise, the Federal Government of Somalia and member states have agreed to hold a kind of clan-based elections which will see 101 electors per constituency pick MPs. The MPs will later in February pick a new president, who will form a government for the next four years.
Roble, a political novice who was picked from the International Labour Organization in Nairobi, and an engineer by profession, chaired the cabinet meeting where he asked ministers to take up offices and come up with a government plan for 90 days.
In the plan, he added, the ministers should ensure security and upcoming elections are catered for since it's the prerogative of the cabinet to ensure government plans are catered for. The cabinet, he noted, should ensure elections are held in line with the schedule and through coordination of his office.
The new cabinet will be in office for just three months and would become the shortest ever to be constituted in Somalia since the country is going to an election. Should President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo succeed in retaining his seat, then many of them might bounce back when a new government will be assembled in February.
Somalia will start holding elections from next month when regional assemblies pick senators who will represent their respective states in Mogadishu. Thereafter, the country will elect MPs, who will later install a speaker and the president of the republic.
Roble is expected to ensure the government also fulfills some of the pledges that President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo made in 2017 when he was elected. He will also be expected to continue with financial reforms that were instigated by his predecessor.