Back to square one..a crisis between the two heads of power in Somalia

Video duration 22 minutes 58 seconds

The director of the Somalia Center for Policies and Strategic Studies, Abdul Qadir Mohamed Osman, said that the slowdown in the conduct of elections in the country, as well as the “corruption” accusations chasing the prime minister, caused the current crisis with the president.

However, the writer and political analyst, Muhammad Abdi Sheikh, said – in his interview with an episode of “Beyond the News” program (2021/12/27) – that the differences between the outgoing Somali President, Mohamed Abdullah Farmajo, and the acting Prime Minister, Mohamed Hussein Robley, are not of the moment, Rather, it has been going on for months, and despite the conclusion of an agreement between them, the differences were renewed with the dismissal of Robley, the heads of the Electoral Dispute Resolution Committee, and the Electoral Commission, considering that Farmajo is trying to undermine the work of the Prime Minister.

Sheikh added that there is a state of astonishment about the president’s decisions because he was the one who assigned the prime minister last April to manage the election process and the security file, accusing Farmajo of implementing his own agenda and trying to make the ongoing elections according to his vision so that he would continue in power.

Sheikh expected that things would return to normal with the prime minister running the country’s affairs and leading it to free and fair elections, he said.

However, the director of the Somalia Center for Policy and Strategic Studies, Abdul Qadir Mohamed Osman, explained that the law stipulates that the president’s powers end with the completion of the electoral process; Either Farmajo is re-elected or a new president is elected.

He pointed out that the Somali army is unified, and it has traditionally been subordinate to the President of the Republic since the country’s independence as the supreme commander of the armed forces, while acknowledging the existence of fears that the current crisis will be exploited by former soldiers or tribal militias.

Observers of the situation in Somalia were not surprised that the dispute between the president and the prime minister has flared up again, after several cases of quarrels between the two men in the past few months.

However, the most dramatic turn in this dispute came on Sunday, when President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo announced the suspension of the work and powers of Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Robley until the completion of the investigation into Robley’s embezzlement of land owned by the army, according to Farmajo, who had accused Robley of failing to organize the elections. During a consultative meeting with the federal government and the states, to correct and speed up the course of the elections.

On the other hand, the Somali Prime Minister described Farmajo’s recent decisions as an attempted coup against the legitimacy and the constitution, and that the aim was to thwart the general elections. Rather, he took the crisis to another dimension, when he stressed that his government is solely responsible for running the country’s affairs, and demanded that the army take orders directly from the President The government, not the president.

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