by Mohammed Nor Ibrahim
Monday, October 14, 2019
Following Kenya’s infringement of Somalia’s territorial integrity after it deliberately breached directives from the Somali government instructing all flights from Kenya to route through Mogadishu. A delegation led by Kenya’s House Majority leader Adan Duale defied the Somali government’s formal order.
What is at stake is our sense of people, our dignity and statehood. What Kenya is trampling upon is Somalia as a whole for their narrow and sinister political ends to continue fragmenting the Somali people and its territory into tribal fiefdoms. This is by definition the notion of divide and conquer. It is disheartening, troubling and shameful for our opposition politicians to endorse and further rejoice those who are tirelessly seeking to divide Somalia and its people for their relative gains. Ultimately, Kenya’s recent aggressive and erratic behaviour is manifested in its ill-conceived and illegal pursuit of grabbing Somalia’s maritime resources. Somalia’s government and its leaders have been steadfast and resolute in defending the sovereignty and the resources of Somalia at regional and international arenas. Kenya’s behaviour is a reaction to Somalia’s viable stance on the maritime case. It is unfortunate our opposition MPs and parties have become pawns in cahoots with Kenya without even strategically making any distinction between their political interest and our wider national strategic interest. Yet, again I am not surprised because some of these opposition politicians and leaders on show were directly responsible in helping Kenya manufacture their bogus claims on Somalia’s maritime.
These same failed politicians who have put Somalia into this quagmire and are still continuing to undermine the relative progress made so far want the public to believe that they are the new alternatives and by extension asking the wider Somali public to trust Somalia with them.
When you see the level of fragmentation in our country and the degree of incompetence from our own politicians as they aid regional actors to further destabilise Somalia again, the current Somali leadership should reflect in retrospection, and pave the way for a new dialogue that takes into context the state of affairs that Somalia is currently experiencing. Any response from the government should not be reactionary and further exacerbate the situation. The Somali government’s dogmatic political pursuits and marginalization of and opposition other political actors has somehow forced them to dance to the trumpets of foreigners and those with geopolitical interest in Somalia.
This unnecessary and unforced political errors could easily be avoided by thoughtful policymaking at the centre of government that takes into account the diversity of political opinions, concerns and fragmentation in the country which gives rise to the behaviour of our opposition to further the political motives of regional spoilers to the detriment of Somalia.
Somalia cannot afford another setback owing to the differences between the central government, the opposition and Federal member states. A lot has been achieved despite the many daunting challenges Somalia is facing. However, it is a high time for Somalia’s political elite to get their house in order, for the sake of Somalia’s national interest.
The Somali public have paid a very high cost and the international community have invested heavily in blood and treasure for Somalia’s continued progress. It is time for Somali’s political class across the various political spectrum to show a sense of purpose and patriotism to avert and pull Somalia back from the impending and irreversible political chaos. To do otherwise, will be counterproductive to our common interest, our international partners and our sense of purpose as people. What is at stake today is Somalia’s existence and her place in the world and beyond.
Mohammed Nor Ibrahim (BA, & MSc in Political Science) is a social activist. He can be reached @ [email protected]