By: Mousse Abdi Mohamoud,
The Republic of Somaliland declared independence from Somalia in 1991 after years of war had culminated in the overthrow of the Somali dictator Siyad Barre. Since then Somaliland has proven the most stable entity in the region.
Despite setbacks during two internal wars in 1992 and 1994-96, and as the records say Somaliland has also been one of the most peaceful places in the continent and especially in the Horn of Africa. A lengthy self-financed process of clan reconciliation in the early 1990s led to a power-sharing government which was a bottom-up process where the local people decided to build their state and they excluded foreign interventions. This has provided an important base for Somaliland’s enduring political stability and for its reconstruction and development.
Somaliland withstands a popular view that says Somalis are incompetent of governing themselves. Despite numerous and continuing challenges, especially in the context of the democratization process begun in 2001, Somaliland presents an alternative path to state-building in the region.
From the commencement the existence of functioning traditional institutions in Somaliland was fundamental. These institutions have survived both British colonial rule and Somali statehood functionally complete, even though transformed. Revitalized during the resistance against Siyad Barre’s regime, ad hoc councils of elders instantly took on the role of quasi-administrations, managing militias, mediating disputes, administering justice, interacting with international agencies and raising local revenue in the absence of local administrative structures.
Moreover, traditional clan elders provided a readily available conflict resolution mechanism and reconciliation infrastructure.
Somaliland has achieved these successes by constructing a set of governing bodies rooted in traditional Somali concepts of governance by consultation and consent. In contrast to most postcolonial states in Africa and the Middle East, Somaliland has had a chance to administer itself using customary norms, values, and relationships. In fact, its integration of traditional ways of governance within a modern state apparatus has helped it to achieve greater cohesion and legitimacy and— not coincidentally—create greater room for competitive elections and public criticism than exists in most similarly endowed territories. Far too many poor states are held back by administrative and political systems built separately from the societies that they are meant to serve, thus rendering those systems illegitimate, ripe for exploitation, and a major hindrance to democratization and development.
In recent days there is political chaos and fragmentations resulted by the presidential elections on November 2017, the reason of all these remarkable stories was the unity between the Somaliland community, and we must keep in mind that without this unity we can’t harvest anything. The people of Somaliland have enough experience of what war and instability is, and they don’t need to explain what war is because they are in the region of failed states.
Politicians, interest-seeker individuals and other expatriates want to divide Somaliland’s unity in order to reach their political ambition but they must keep in mind that Somalilanders are 4million tied by love, passion, solidarity, kindness, attractive and set an example of how repels can build a state.
Political parties must show the world that Somaliland can exist and survive, and this political conflict is not harming the nation’s goal.
Politicians will go, but Somaliland will remain.
About the author:
Mousse Abdi Mohamoud,