Avv.Abdiwahid Abdullahi Warsame
Thursday, June 30, 2016
A constitution is a human scriptural authority that governs the behavior and manners of a given society, not a scribbled document. Correspondingly, it may be true that a society can function without a written constitution; however the society must have an oral tradition that holds it together and which serves as the essential glue for the common good. When a society fails to enshrine their written constitution or deny the role of their oral tradition, it’s likely doomed. In general, man is imperfect and power leads him to pride and conceit. Arrogance is the major ingredient for terrible mistakes The Somalis had laws, rules and regulations that governed the society even in communal times. We were not labored in the understanding and application of these laws; however, any kind of government has to focus on the procedural matter rather than abrogating cultural institutions. The lack of these two major elements has been absent in the evolution of our governance since 1960.
Shared governance through democratic ideals was born out of cognizance of human folly. The Somali people have set itself up for failure.A constitution is a human scriptural authority that governs the behavior and manners of a given society, not a scribbled document. Correspondingly, it may be true that a society can function without a written constitution; however the society must have an oral tradition that holds it together and which serves as the essential glue for the common good. When a society fails to enshrine their written constitution or deny the role of their oral tradition, it’s likely doomed. In general, man is imperfect and power leads him to pride and conceit. Arrogance is the major ingredient for terrible mistakes The Somalis had laws, rules and regulations that governed the society even in communal times. We were not labored in the understanding and application of these laws; however, any kind of government has to focus on the procedural matter rather than abrogating cultural institutions. The lack of these two major elements has been absent in the evolution of our governance since 1960.
Shared governance through democratic ideals was born out of cognizance of human folly. The guiding principle of this is that the ordinary people have knowledge and understanding of how to manage their affairs more than anyone else. In contrast, despots argue that ordinary citizens are ignorant, and cannot decipher the complexity of human affairs, to justify the perpetuation of power. Schemes and beliefs have firm authority to shape one’s actions. Our political mindset towards governance since its birth has weakened the social cord and muted harmony among the citizens. Somali individuals must renounce the human tendency that rejects good ideas that come from someone with who you disagree. This is what led us to the civil war and threw our moral value into ruin.
We should age, grow, mature and have public spirit to support the common good. There has been much social distress and human suffering that have taken place on Somali territory that awaken the social conscience to the question what kind of humans are we ? Look at our beloved and revered Prophet Muhammed (puh) before his Prophethood and the revelation; he constantly reflected the barbaric life of Arabian Bedouins around Mecca and their moral culture. The spread of social illnesses such as apathy, killing and the disrespect of any kind of law and common good became a cultural norm which a sane person would not stand for. The dream of our nationhood has somehow been lost. The nature of goodness that cares for the existence of men to progress and dignity faded, and created a vacuum for the ethical obligation to better the society. Lloyd Morris, in his book Postscript to Yesterday: America the Last Fifty Years said, with reference of philosophers like William James and John Dewey, “Society is a plastic organism; that social environment is only material to be shaped, by intelligent, to accord with men’s desire. … Nature will care for progress if men care for reform.”
In general, Somalians are marked by generosity, intelligence, entrepreneurship and bravery, but these noble traits were corrupted by political institutions. We must free ourselves from the bondage of tribal division and extremism. Additionally, tolerance must be increased among all people in order for a good- governance system to thrive. Experiences taught us the brutality of war and its ripple effects. The morale of Somali people plummeted through the agony of constant wars in the name of tribal ego. This prideful fight superseded the defense against tranny and injustice and hampered the effectiveness of any kind of good political endeavor. We became renowned for our faithful allegiance to tribalism. This description often contains a kernel of truth. Thus, we have a conundrum; our behaviors are not consistent with the intended goal of good governance. Was the authoritarian regime to blame for the crimes that have been committed since the downfall of Jaalle Mohamed Siyad Barre? At least I have a romantic view and nostalgic desire to turn around the clock and restore once again the conditions of earlier days. Somalis sense that the new ideas (Somalida cusub) are meaningless and illusionary.
The new season of elections are looming over the horizon. The sitting President Mr. Hassan Sheikh Mahmoud and his mostly hated party, Damjadiid, was elected in 2012. He was mandated to govern the nation with diligence, end the decades of corruption and lessen the tribal divisions. We gave him a resounding victory over President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed. We thought that he leaned toward progressive idealism, and supported rule of law. We thought he was civil, and not member of religious group. Unfortunately, the President’s true colors have appeared within weeks as he started to devise the Damjadiid plan to incorporate harsh policies and mafia style governance. There has been a growing debate since he came to power about whether he supported the far-right radicals. His government has done little to ease the instabilities of the nation. The much needed institution -building was hampered by a lack of skilled personnel. Crime remains worrisome in Mogadishu. Because of that the country suffered, and forces against the government gained momentum.
There has been public outcry about the sales of government buildings and public land that this government carried out. Public land and public properties are the glue that binds us together. It has an intrinsic value that no individual entity has a right to infringe upon. If the need to sell arises, the Parliament has to give the executive branch the power to sell government properties. Then the executive branch has to follow the provisions of the Parliamentarian legislation by creating an agency to administer the sales of government land and properties. The government first and foremost must identify whether the property or the land is excessive to the public needs and appropriate to private ownership. Recently, President Hassan Sheikh Mahmoud’s government drove a campaign to sell the public properties such as the recreation centers and other public properties without a legal mechanism granted by the Parliament. To my knowledge a simple letter from a minister determines the fate of these valuable national treasuries without any kind of legal consideration. I believe the Parliament has to summon the ministers that signed these letters and question its validity. History will condemn anyone involved in the illegal schemes of selling public properties. Besides we don’t know who is pocketing this money.
The President Mr. Hassan Sheikh Mahmoud circumvents the law of the land and practices a dictatorial scheme of uncompromising polices to sideline the voices of opposition. This approach resembles a tyrannical mode of governance which eats away at the democratic principles that were enshrined in the Constitution and division of power. The President rejected the much- needed political participation, and things got darker and uglier. It might be his defense to argue that Somalia has proven difficult to govern, but we would like to remind him it needs only a skillful politician with humility and agility. He failed to initiate structural reform, reset the climate of trust and government accountability owed to the people. Correspondingly, the President blames his failure on the presence of Al-Shabaab, although the miscarriage of justices lies within his system. Mr. President, you should learn the art of politics. Whether you are right or wrong does not matter; it is the perception you portray to the people. It is this perception that will determine whether you succeed or will mark the beginning of your downfall. Your political structure existed only to advance and serve the narrow-minded interest of the Damuljadiid oligarchy.
Abdikadir Xirsi Siyad “Yam Yam” tixdiisiii Caku Geelu muu dido
Qayb ka mid ah waxay yiri;
Dibnahaygu waa nacas carabkaygu waa doqon
Labadayda daan iyo dalqada iyo afkaygaa ga’bay doodi ku habboon
Dulmanaha ifkaan ahay Dambi baa laga galay
Ana’ maba dareensane
Show labada daarood Dariiqyada u kala baxa
Ninka ka daahan baa ahay
Doqoney dhegweynee Show daacadnimada
Dulmiguba ka beer maa
… Maxaa quruxdii daa-uus loogu rogay dameer farow
Soow indhaha wax deeqa waa jeebka daawada
Haddii dibiga beer qoday ubaxeeda daawado
Ileen kama aysan daasheen tuurtiisu dowliga Birta dabada ugu xiran
Berigaan dadqalatada u haystay dugaag falan
Ilaan duni war uma hayn
Show dabeecadaa jir in calool la dooxoo dhiig la daasho
Mooyee aan farxadi soo deign
Ileen xiiso darariyo, darsi waayahaa qaba maxaa yaab isdabayaal
Nin dakhligi faqriga yahay Roobkii u da’iyo daruurtisu cayr tahay
Ilaan daba la hayaa waa daabki gudimoo geedkiisi lagu diray
Caku geelu muu dido Haddii xooga dahabka ah caqli loogu dari laa
Ileen dumar ma dhaansheen.
Dadku waa diriraye Maxaa laysku dilayaa
In xornimo la doonaa daawadeena weeyee xagee baa ka doonaa…
Abdikadir Hirsi Siyad khalaf “Yam Yam”. Mr. Yam Yam was among Somalia’s greatest poets, philosophers and patriots of the 20th century .He addressed issues such as poverty, unity and social cohesion.
Avv.Abdiwahid Abdullahi Warsame