Following the inauguration of Somalia’s Federal Permanent Government (SFG) in August 2012, the formation and acceleration of Regional States that was envisioned in the adopted Somali Provisional Constitution has been in process. The leaders of the SFG in an unforeseen manner have paid rounding tour in most of those regions; assessing the social situation and seeking consultation from the stakeholders of the towns they have landed in. Regions like Hiiraan, Gedo, and Bay have had their administrations upgraded by replacing old leaders with new ones. The armed dominant group in the central regions, Ahlusuna Waljama’ was convinced to rally behind the Federal Government and the Puntaland’s phobia of Centralism has at least been cooled down to the low level; if it is not terminated at all. Conversely, it is the Kismayo scenario that gives gloomy picture and its process seems unpredictable and dangerous. The stakeholders of Kismayo are yet to agree the way forward; though the delegation from the SFG led by the Prime Minister came back from Kismayo City on 29th March without any achievement. However, with the exception of Lower Jubba Region, all other proposals from the regions visited by the delegation of the government have been submitted by the traditional elders and other principal stakeholders. But in Kismayo, politicians, not traditional elders; are leading the process of the Regional arrangements. Traditional elders, Business people, Diasporas have submitted ideas and suggestions of how to approach the politics in the regions like Bay, Hiiraan, Gedo, and Galgadud. Therefore, they seem quiet and less discontent these days. The central government seems to be exercising impartiality when it comes to the local politics of those cities. For that reason, it is believed that if such measures are consolidated and confirmed by the SFG, then the reconciliation process may gradually lead to level of normality.
Coming to the title of the article, the selection and appointment of Bay region Governor didn’t come as many assume by the sole decision of the Central Federal Government. It rather came through prolonged discussions and consultations made by the locals and the approval of the governor was eventually proceeded by the Digil Mirifle (DM) thirty traditional elders out of the 135 elders who selected the 275 MPs in the Federal Parliament of Somalia back in August 2012. Through the DM elder’s authorization to the Interior Ministry, he was forwarded to the office of the Presidency and ultimately nominated to be the next governor of Bay Region. Even, it is safe to assume that the sudden withdrawal of Ethiopian forces from Hudur city got implicated the decision taken by the elders. As it is an open secret, the Ethiopians because of their Somali cronies; were usually pre-informed if any major transformations is expected in the regions they have influence. However, according to an informed source; they were kept in the dark of the decision reached by the Digil Mirifle elders. In consequence, they protested to hold back their military support and promptly abandoned Hudur City.
Nevertheless, it is no surprise to learn that some MPs from the same region carrying different opinions have refuted the decision made by their elders, because it is the Human instinct to disagree. However, due to some discourse on this topic, this could not be translated that there is a discontent among the stakeholders of the region. Even these few MPs were not able to come up with concrete justification for their disagreement on this particular matter. They failed to bring alternative suggestion when they were called to do so by the Speaker of the House of the People.
In this regard, it could be a misleading and a deception to propagate expressions that have no genuine background and to inform the audience that the nomination of Bay Region governor came through coercive measures, or even approached through top-down means. The actual nomination of Abdi Hoosow on February, 2013 came in the alignment of the Charter of the Federal Republic of Somalia and the government as its core principal upholds, preserved the desire and dignity of the traditional elders which they really deserve.
As a final point, it is the communication channel between the SFG and the legitimate elders in any region that could establish a confident atmosphere between the government and the people, while at the end of the day, these traditional elders would occupy the upper house of the Federal Republic of Somalia that eventually should mark the completion of the Federal system of the Republic.