July 6, 2012 ·77 Comments
Flag designed by Kayse for a future reunified Somali Republic — “an inclusive and fresh beginning”.
BY ABDISAMAD MOOGE
While Somaliland should be commended for building its own youthful organic democratic model, which in most part has sailed through the regional crisis– many of us feel it needs to do more. Last year President Ahmed M. Mohamud “Silanyo” signed a new legislation allowing the formation of new political parties in addition to the existing three.
The measure only confused the local people and the international community and was never a step designed to advance democracy in the country. Almost every man formed his own political party along tribal-lines. There was no sign of genuine political parties and real issues were ignored.
These parties were not a true representation of the reality on the ground nor are the existing three. They insist that they are “multi-regional” parties – not as an ideal but as a reality. They often deny the reality of “tribalism” and insisted that “provinces” was the category of identification.
In all more than 15 parties were formed and later were reduced to half after some failed to meet requirements and benchmarks. The elimination process only complicated the system even further. Every Tribe was complaining and the process became hostage to shifting allegiances. To everyone’s shock, some of the elders and tribal chiefs, who have large sphere of influence in mainstream society, said they would not accept party nominations from other regions.
President Silanyo’s own indecisiveness has also alienated Islamic and pro-Union groups across the country with many taking arms against his rule in mainly Buhodle and Sool region.
The legislation should have paved the way for Islamic and Union parties and not restrict the registration to only those that support Somaliland. Until now there is no difference in policy between the three existing parties. People vote for them based on figure heads and on tribal bases.
Somaliland needs to re-address its democratic views and introduce political parties based on policies and ideologies not regions and tribes. There should be Islamic, Secular, Union and Nationalist parties that advocate for independent Somaliland.
Until now Somaliland has not accepted the reality on the ground, while all three parties are formed on the bases of tribe they claim to multi-tribal claims are far-fetched. A multi-tribal party can only be one that firstly accepts the validity of tribal interests, and secondly, has within it individuals who are willing to overtly represent those interests through ideas.
I do not consider the three main parties a multi-regional/multi-tribal parties because they all reject the articulation of specific “tribe” interests for example union supporters in the east. Indeed there are few individuals in all three parties from most tribes but in a true democracy the favoured approach is the representation of ideas not individual representatives.
Do we have any party that represents the ideas of Islamification or Union? The answer is clear no and this threatens Somaliland’s religious moderation and material aspirations. Somaliland’s democracy and political agendas are driven by personality rather than policy and competition.
What is Kulmiye? What is UDUB? What is UCID? Is it secular nationalism? Islamism? Beyond changing power from Rayale to Silanyo or Faisal Ali Warabe – what else do they represent? What value or policy connects you to them? Do you even know if they have a mission statement? 99% of the population do not know and only choose Silanyo, the SNM veteran, Rayale, the former security chief or the engineer Faisal Ali Warabe purely based on tribe and personality.
This is not a democracy. It is a celebrity competition between personalities. It’s time Somaliland reformed its political cleavage and became a system driven by policy and competition rather than personalities and tribal views.
The system that is in place at the moment excludes unionist people and those that want moderate Islamic values as well as those who wish to see a separation between Islamism and secular nationalism.
It is time to reform Somaliland democracy and recognize everyone’s unique voice rather than claiming a certain individual is the voice of an entire region or tribe. Our parties have been too preoccupied constructing “national” platforms in personnel and content, and claiming to be speaking for “all” rather than creating a system for “all”.
For all means no restriction to the political and democracy process. Today there would not be war in Buhoodle nor in Sool if these people were given the right to exercise their democratic rights.
I am calling for the formation of a unionist party that represents those who support reunification with Somalia on the bases of policy and values and not on tribalism.
If this party is established, it will effectively clampdown against those that support violence by using democratic and people empowerment methods. People will no longer feel voiceless and will not resort to violence and violent groups will not find safe haven nor will the international community sympathize with them.
My view is for all.
Name: Somali Union Party (SUP)
Mission: To restore and reunify the Somali people peacefully under one nation. This party calls for the reunification of Somaliland and Somalia as equal nations that will form The Somali Republic. No Somali will be alienated nor blamed for anything. In the future, NFD, West Somalia and Djibouti will be invited to unify with the Somali Republic.
We will wait for things to change in Kenya and Ethiopia where within the next 50 years their ethnic federal system is most likely to collapse especially in Ethiopia where Oromo will take leadership role.
Constitution: The Somali Republic is a democratic Islamic republic which will combine communal law, Shariah and indigenous system. It will be a three state federal state where one state hosts the Legislative body, another hosts the Judicial system and finally the third will host the Executive branch of government.
Economy: Resources will be shared based on a 2:3:5 ratios with each state contributing to the development of the other. So for example, let‘s say Somaliland made $100m in certain month, and then it would keep 50% ($50m), 1/5 ($20m) for South Somalia and 3/10 ($30m) for Puntland region. Likewise, let’s say South Somalia state made $200m in the same month; it keeps 50% ($100m), it gives $60m to Somaliland and $40m to Puntland. Puntland does the same keeping 50% and giving the smaller proportion to Somaliland in that month since it received the bigger share from the South.
Once that month is complete, the next month things will be rotated, where for example now South gives the bigger share to Puntland, etc.
The federal government will then just tax the overall accounts of each state after they shared their wealth within themselves, so for example in that month now Somaliland has $50m + $40m from south and whatever from Puntland lets say $15m then the government taxes the total.
One of the first economical measures should be the construction of a railway from Kismayo to Zeila, this will not only generate income for the three states but it will help reconcile and integrate our people. They will heavily migrate between the very north and the very south. The migration will foster an atmosphere of mutual trust between the South and the North and will break down my prejudice views—now they seen the North or South for themselves.
All oil and gas finds will be divided between the State (federal government), foreign firms and the host state.
Unity will be based on economic and infrastructure integration where education is the center of the union. I am not a fan of the so called unionists currently out there who just want to force the north back into the fold which will only lead to more division and ultimately back to square one.
Unity should be achieved by peaceful means and as homogenous people we should focus economic, social and infrastructure integration and less on political and tribal divisions. The north like all people wants to live in peace and have access to resources.
Unlike the so called unionist out there currently planting bombs and seeds of hate, I believe in cultural, social, economic and infrastructure exchange and expansionism.
If your claim about Somaliland democracy is true; why are you afraid of a peaceful union party based on such principles? Like business, choices and options will only better our people — no room for monopoly and one way view.
Flag: The flag that I personally designed (6th July, 2012) as shown above reflects the true spirit and identity of the Somali race. The blue reflects our blue flag, the five stars represent the five Somali regions (Somali West, Djibouti, NFD, Somaliland and Somalia). I feel representing it with five full stars is the right idea than five points on a star. The black star is for Somaliland and is at the center because it was the first Somali region to get independence and center to the whole Greater Somalia dream.
The red star is for Djibouti again it has a red star on its flag, it should get it’s choice; white star for Somalia and we await for the two others to decide what they want, for now they will remain default white.
The white strip represents the pure Somali spirit, our reconciliation to start from a white page again and the red is taken from the last strip on the Somaliland flag and finally we are a Muslim nation, we bring the Muslim groups to the fold.
Puntland, Somaliland and Somalia will all keep their current flags as state flags.
Having a Union and Islamist party in Somaliland will advance democracy; your vote will not be asked on behave of a tribe but on behave of secularism or independence. It will not be let us beat X clan but let’s beat the Unions or the clerics.
By Abdisamad Mooge “Kayse”
July 6, 2012Follow @somalilandpress