Sunday, September 2, 2012

Somaliland: Why Siyad Barre fired Ahmed Silanyo from his Cabinet Thirty Years Ago?

Somaliland: Why Siyad Barre fired Ahmed Silanyo from his Cabinet Thirty Years Ago?

It was almost thirty (30) years ago when then President Siyad Barre removed Ahmed Silanyo from his cabinet as the Commerce Minister of now defunct Somali Democratic Republic. Siyad Barre was upset with Ahmed Silanyo because of his refusal to reinstate two of the then President’s relatives who were earlier dismissed from their position by Ahmed Silanyo, the then Minister of Commerce. Thirty years later, the same drama is playing out in Hargeisa, Somaliland.

The drama is exactly the same: A President is asking one of his ministers to reinstate two of his relatives who were earlier removed from their positions by a minister. After refusing to reinstate the two relatives, the minister is dismissed from his ministerial position.

The Actors:
The current President of Somaliland, Ahmed Mohamed Silanyo, is playing the role of late President of Somalia, Mohamed Siyad Barre. Moreover, Bobe Yusuf Duale is playing the role of Ahmed Mohamed Silanyo as the cabinet minister who refused to reinstate president’s relatives and then lost his ministerial post. The latest move by President Silanyo to dismiss his Information Minister, Bobe Yusuf Dualeh, justifies the wrongs done to him earlier by Siyad Barre.

This shows that Siyad Barre was absulately right to dismiss Ahmed Silanyo from his cabinet thirty years ago.
The question many people are asking now is that: was Ahmed Silanyo wrong when he earlier refused to reinstate President Siyad Barre relatives and in the process losing his ministerial job or is he wrong now for firing his Information Minister for refusing to reinstate his relatives? The President cannot have both ways. He cannot possibly be right on both of these situations.would not have involved his esteemed office in this situation. However, there is a growing concern among the public that the presidency is unnecessarily interfering the day-to-day working activities of many government departments and agencies. For instance, those who resist to blindly obey orders coming from the presidency are summarily dismissed from their positions.

There must to be a process through which dismissed public employees could file an appeal and receive a fair hearing. For instance, if the two dismissed officers have grievances, they should have approached the Public Service Commission or the courts for reinstatement. The Minister stated that two sacked officers impaired the day-to- day operations of the Ministry of Information and the only way to make things go smooth is to remove them from their positions.

According to the local press, the Information Minister has sacked Somaliland National TV Director, Ahmed Suleiman Duhul and the Editor of Dawan newspaper, Mohamed Osman Mire “Sayid’ for having instigated a clan motivated investigation against now suspended Director of Administration and Finance of Somaliland National TV, Hassan Mohamed Mohamoud who hails from Awdal region. Earlier, another government official, Director of Finance and Administration of the Ministry of Education, who also hails from Awdal regions, was investigated, arrested and them dismissed on corruption charges by the Audit General’s office. It is really sad that some people are using the full-force of the government to unfairly target their perceived enemies.

If Silanyo Administration is indeed serious about government corruption, Ali Xoor-Xoor, the Managing Director of the Berbera Port, and a symbol of Somaliland government corruption, should not have been reinstated after having him relieved of his duties by the President immediately after assuming office.

Abdullahi H. Daud

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