July 10, 2009 ·5 Comments
Somali MPs, chased from their houses in Mogadishu, unable to find a secure den to convene meetings or venture into the streets, flee in droves. Some escape to Kenya; others, to North America and Europe. But a small group of MPs who originally hail from Somaliland, time and time again, when they sense an imminent danger sprint from Mogadishu to Hargeisa, Somaliland capital—their sweet home, their safe heaven. Read about Somali MP’s in Hargeisa: http://tinyurl.com/kpxzgz
Hoping that no one would notice their arrival, they sneak into the country and melt into their communities. Soon the local police knock their doors to arrest the uninvited intruders. But only when their relatives, human rights organizations, religious and tribal leaders intervene and plead for release of the MPs, these Somali law makers regain their sanity helmets
After a month or two when the dust settles down, they emerge from their hideouts. That is, these MPs lift their self-imposed home detention and stroll down the streets of Hargeisa freely just like normal citizens. And unlike the savage dance of death in the alleys of Mogadishu, Hargeisa’s spectacular mountain views, peace and tranquility, and hospitable residents offer much needed comfort to the traumatized MPs. But from an observer’s point view, an uncomfortable picture emerges.
First, I cannot help but admire Somaliland people’s willingness to forgive those—the Somaliland individuals in the Somali regime—who are paid handsome salaries to suppress the wishes of Somaliland citizens—their God-given right to stand as a sovereign state. Second, Somaliland’s envied freedom that permits these MPs to come back home tantamount to a light in the dark. But just like everything else: both freedom and forgiveness have limitations.
That is, Somaliland cannot host the same MPs who are determined to undermine its existence as an independent state. Nor should Somaliland allow them to wage a tireless campaign against its independence while their wives and children enjoy a peaceful life in Somaliland. That is, their families should join these MPs in Mogadishu. These MPs want to be part of Somalia; let them be part of it. Read: “Somaliland Individuals Perform Exotic Belly Dances” – http://tinyurl.com/mv2bm9
More upsetting than these MPs flocking to Hargeisa unopposed is the Somaliland government’s hypocritical policy. Its message is clear: any one could resolutely oppose Somaliland independence, venomously suppress the wishes of its people, and freely arrive or leave Somaliland just like a popular coffee shop.
But if Somaliland’s loyal citizens, for instance journalist and opposition party members show the slightest scorn towards the government they will call home the notorious prison of Mandheera, near Berbera city in Somaliland. So much for democracy and freedom of speech!
Whether the Somaliland authority ignores or not, the Somali warlords, the Alshabaab terrorists that exiled these MPs and the MPs themselves agree on only one thing: wiping Somaliland off the map. No kidding! If these MPs who vowed to keep Somaliland unrecognized for as long as it takes could enter and leave Somaliland at will, the baffling question is: why would the government harass journalists—however irresponsible that some of their writings might be—and arrest the opposition supporters that protest against election scandals?
The same freed that guarantees the Somaliland enemies to enter our country as they wish, should grant our citizens the privilege to express their thoughts. See Somaliland authority’s brutality against journalists: http://tinyurl.com/mspk4u
To sum up, the main reason for having these MPs in the Somali regime is to showcase them as the “representatives” of Somaliland people in the Somali regime which controls only few blocks of Mogadishu. Never mind Somaliland’s democratically elected leaders. For years these MPs tried to govern Somaliland from Mogadishu with a remote control. (But as it seems, once again batteries ran out.) Also to maintain their salaries from Mogadishu, they couldn’t care less whether Somaliland stays in a diplomatic limbo for the next ten years, or not. Without a doubt, they are wilful and blatantly self-centered individuals. Yet repeatedly when panic strikes them, they sprint all the way to Somaliland without grasping for air.
Of course, Somaliland is for all its citizens: the proponents and opponents of its recognition. It is not a secret that a small percentage of Somaliland population disagrees with its quest for independence, but they don’t drag it into a dark abyss.
As for the Somaliland government: it is time to crack the whip and show these treacherous MPs that Somaliland is not a shelter for battered Somali politicians. They too should visit Mandheera prison. Our government should not entertain the Somali MPs who are determined to undermine our God-given right, our self-determination, and our freedom to stay as a separate country. My argument is not about suppressing these MPs’ freedom; it is about securing our freedom.