Saturday, August 29, 2015
MOGADISHU (HOL) -----two days after officials from the Somalia-based Sufi Islamist group signed a power sharing deal with the Galmudug regional administration, a faction of the group rejected the deal, terming it as ’sham’ formulated by former members of the militia.
Thursday’s agreement was seen as an opportunity to end months of political rivalry that started after the ASWJ officials boycotted to recognize the Somali government-backed state of Galmudug.
Sheikh Mohamed Shakir, the president of Ahlu Sunna Waljamaca which controls Dhusomareb and Guriel towns has distanced his group from the deal which he said were signed by ‘protagonists’ who feigned to be in his group’s leadership.
“It’s a misleading deal – Ahlu Sunna has never been contented with what happened in Adado.” He told reporters on Friday.
“Having signed a deal with former members does not reflect the political stand of ASWJ.” He said.
Under the deal signed in Adado town, Ahlu Sunna Waljamaca group would have some of its members included into the Galmudug administration’s leadership circle, scenario which would also assign a 30% share in the state’s parliament. In addition, ASWJ militia would have 4% of the cabinet from their side.
Political analysts were quick to point out that the new deal would help Galmudug administration to unite the Sufi militia’s strongholds into its territory that may boost its political clout.
The rejection of the deal by the group’s main faction leaves the deal in an awkward situation which risks undoing its implementation.
The new deal comes two months after the moderate Islamist group’s fighters have ousted government troops from Dhusomareb, a town which was supposed to serve as the Galmudug administration’s provincial capital as declared by Somali president in June in protest of the state’s formation.
The town’s capture has since forced authorities to swap the headquarters to Galkayo town in Mudug region.
Signed by Abdikarim Hussein Guled, Galmudug state’s president and Sheikh Ibrahim Gureye, the chairman of the Sufi militia’s executive committee, the deal ducks a major divisive issue: whether the two sides will avoid a more political row.
Ahlu Sunna Waljamaca fighters control Guriel and Dhusomareb towns after the ouster of the Al-shabab fighters from the two major bases in 2009. The group has since maintained the control of both towns.