June 9, 2012 ·48 Comments
The only way a Federal System government or constitution would work in what used to be Somalia, is if Somaliland and Somalia agree on reunification on Federal System based Government, since Somaliland and Somalia were two different countries before the so called unification, which is unlikley to happen and Somaliland will not to accept.
Somalis are a homogeneous society, and have one religion and a common language, Somali. And it would be very difficult a constitution based on federalism to work in Somalia, unless the states that the Federal Government would be constituted of are based on clan or tribal, since the people of Somalia are only divided on clans or tribal and current existing states like Puntland , Gal-mudug and Azania are all based on clan or tribal.
Unlike Ethiopia where there are different ethnic groups, like Somali, Oromo, Tigre, Amhara, Afar and many more with different religions, cultures and languages.
Federalsim is working today for the Ethiopians, after it was implemented by the current rulling party, EPRDF, Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Party, led by Prime Minister Meles Zenawi. Today in Ethiopia each ethnic group has its own locally elected government or state and have the luxury to practice their own relgion, speak and write own languages.
Before EPRDF took over the power in 1991 , Ethiopia was under the Communist Dictatorial Regime of Mangistu Haile Mariam, since the overthrow of Emperor Haile Silase in 1974. And the support of each ethnic group to the Communist Military Regime was based on socialism ideology.
During the rule of Emperor Haile Silase, Ethiopia was ruled by one ethnic group, his highland Amhara. Schools were thought in Amharic and all government institution were run in Amharic, be it in writing or on daily functions of each institution. And whether you were Somali, Tigre, Oromo or Afar etc. you had no choice but to learn Amharic, if you had to go to school or get a job in any government institution. Unless you were self-employed or a merchant.
On the other hand, the so called Federal Constitution Draft being revised by the illegitimate Somali elders would not work in Somalia , like the Puntland Authority would like it to be ,Federal based constitution, unless all states or local governments are based on clan or tribal, like Puntland, Gal-mudug and Azania.
Puntland state of Somalia was created in 1998 based on clan affiliation of Harti, sub-clan of Darood. Warsangali and Dhulbahante of Somaliland, border wise and Majerten of Somalia. Puntland was created when Somaliland was seven years old, as Somaliland was created on 05/18/1991, after she declared its independence or withdrew from the unification with Somalia. And regardless of Somaliland boundaries, Puntland claimed the lands of Dhulbahante and Warsangali within Somaliland boundaries on clan affiliation.
For a Constitution based on Federal system to work in Somalia, like Puntland State of Somalia, a clan based state, wishes. All states that the Fedederal Governent would be constituted of, would have to be based on clan or tribal states.
But the irony is a Federal System based on clan or tribal states, would not work in Somalia, as Somali clans have no known boundaries that separate them from their neighboring clans, and most of Somali clans are nomads, who are on the move to chase after rain and grassy area. Therefore clan based states could create major conflicts and endless clan warfare among Somali clans, who are already struggling to overcome the mistrust and the animosity existed among them since the collapse of Siad Barre and before.
A federal system based government might work for Somalia, if the states of would be Somalia are based on the existing regions prior to the collapse of Siad Barre regime, excluding Somaliland. and by denouncing the existence of current so called states of Somalia, like Puntland, Gal-mudug and Azania, all based on clan and tribal.
These scenario itself might create another problem, since there is no a single region inhabited by single clan, and clans have to fight for power sharing in each region. Therefore Somalia might have to forego adopting a federalism based constitution, since it will create endless conflict and warfare among the clans of Somalia.
The only way a Federal System government or constitution would work in what used to be Somalia, is if Somaliland and Somalia agree on reunification on Federal System based Government, since Somaliland and Somalia were two different countries before the unification, which is unlikely to happen and Somaliland will not to accept.
Mohamud Aden Samatar
Phoenix Az, USA.
By goth Mohamed