Monday, April 4, 2016

Sycophancy: A New Profession in My People’s Political Sphere

“One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors”, by Plato, an immensely influential Greek philosopher.

On Sunday, 27th December 2015, sipping my morning coffee in my office; breaking news on the graduation of 75 male and female candidates of University of Hargeisa (Faculty of Political Science) struck me. The attractively tailored graduation gone and colorful floral boutiques over shadowed the platform that was decorated for this special occasion to earmark the culmination of a historic journey; a journey that has taken many days and months; a journey through which, perhaps this team of challengers came together with a common mission__ just to fill the gaps in their people’s leadership.  The triumph and joyous feeling on such graduation has gone beyond a level far from my limits. For, it was a positive icebreaker for a potentially progressive young force that could possibly have brought about the change that Somaliland was in a quest for about two and half decades, but an adverse feeling snatched all my happiness within blinks of an eye.  This is because; the insurmountably difficult and unethical threat that the corruption ridden system and its establishments could have the will and anticipation of these fresh graduates was always there in my mind.

Ironically, one of the strangest episodes one can experience in graduation ceremonies is that stirring valedictory speeches are sometimes delivered in the presence of many high profile government officials who had no high school level education let alone varsity, but what got them to such prestigious public responsibilities are merely the blessings of their tribal influences; not their level of competency and professionalism. This is a simple gauge with which one can figure out how immensely notorious, opportunist and incompetent servile cells are filled with many core positions in the system. Such cells act as a sophisticated defensive modus operandi for the government and attack any principle-centered fellow, as he/she according to them is an obvious threat.  Instead of being for the people, with the people and by the people, they are submissive advocates for the government while the case is fairly with the people at large. Among the issues that the people cope with are; drinking water shortages, unprofessional tax hikes on essential commodities and first moving consumer goods/durables (FMCG/D), absence of city council(s) undertakings, lack of proper infrastructure, lack of accountability and transparency, lack of censorship towards what comes in/out of the country; and in a net shell, poor government services in many aspects. Many competent personalities are there in the system though; but it’s undeniable fact that they’re literally submerged by the aforementioned overwhelming majority.

The Infiltration of sycophants

Cautiously taking a wider panorama over the political landscape through which the lame-duck government won an absolutely convincing landslide victory to lead the nation for about five years ago, almost everyone with a political ambition jumped on the bandwagon__ I could even remember in the very dying minutes of the presidential election several ministers were resigned from the KULMIYE predecessor party (UDUB), which was seen as the only formidable challenger in comparison with the other party in the loop (UCID). Nevertheless, the KULMIYE party technically failed to act differently in the real time by just testing the quality and experience of many in their political vehicle. Missing that crucial point, the public responsibility was handed out as a prize to many unqualified figures intern of what was called as their efforts they’ve invested (tribal hard cheques) in the run up for the power, which should not have been the case.

On the other hand, a group of elite yet prominent political figures were part of the major ingredients in what the government executive body was contained. In my view, this was in fact a positive milestone that could presumably have guided the mindset of the very masses of the population towards the very essence of change. Among the group were the second/third peer generations of the incumbent president, similarly served high ranking civilian posts in the former government of Somalia, several younger professionals were also there, running with crucial portfolios viz. Health, interior and exterior affairs.

What so ever the pressure was; who so ever has had his/her hands in glove with this conspiracy; how so ever they took the advantages out of the loopholes in the octogenarian’s leadership, the elite group has systematically been dismissed from the system in which they were a part of its success story.  Adverse groups however, with parallel powers have germinated from the vacuum generated by the former group. Sorry to say but, “as the quality speaks for itself” a bunch of flatterers have emerged to servile the system much beyond the tolerance of the human morality. Through the black and white lenses of Somaliland politics, an acrimonious wrangling between inner circle grown opponents headed by Mr. Musa Bihi Abdi (The KULMIYE presidential hopeful) and Mr. Hirsi Ali (the former Minister of the Presidency and the right-hand of the incumbent president) have come out into the public theatre.

 Astonishingly, as no two kingdoms with similar powers can rule the same land, the groups with the parallel powers could no longer being flying by the same range and the latter group (Hirsi group) which many believed was a part of the small cream left with the system has ventured to expose their political will and supremacy over the other, but their faith has ended up with paying the price for the adventurous political maneuver they have made. The broad daylight mass resignations on 26th October last year were something resulted the explosion between the KULMIYE party and the hastily decided fill the gap-spree further poured many incompetents into the key public portfolios, playing much worse cards to take more advantages out of the administrative gaps.  

Every action has equal and opposite reaction (Newton's Third Law of Motion), using the same metaphor, the tribal horrific actions are in almost all the local news main pages and the microphones echoed the tribalism tones from East to West. Sultans and the so-called cultural leaders have mobbed the TV cameras and raised issues of what would have been a public responsibility. Planned assassinations against the police, military officers and civilians perpetrated by clan mongers have emerged as a result of weak governance. In the tiny country on the horn of Africa; the correlation between the loose governance and the tribalism is what changes the trends of the stability graph i.e. the stronger the government is the weaker the tribal voices are, and vice versa.

I shouldn’t be biased, by just addressing problems only, but one of the major reasons, in which the flattery becomes like a plague pandemic across not only the system but the nation as well, is that the good, yet knowledgeable people with the clean sheets distances themselves from the political spectrum. Many well developed countries we see today in the world have had a history far worse than what we are currently dealing with, but their success didn’t come alone by chance unless their good people audaciously debuted themselves into the political stage, Turkey is a good example.

 Many national level commissions were established regardless their level of efficiency, but no commission was made for competency, career and profession authenticity; notwithstanding, the municipal elections held at the end of 2012 was another Pandora’s Box; as a new group mostly with no strong academic back grounds which I deem as “the tribal babies (as everyone was born with his tribe’s consensus) have overtaken the local councils. Hargeisa (the capital) has really paid the heaviest price compared with the municipalities of the other major cities.  Eavesdropping on the peoples’ talks about them; their job is to chill and chat together with high moods in closed Qat-pubs (majlis in Somali), benefit for themselves from the public undertakings as a one-stop-shop service and practice hallucinated passive war games against anyone who raises a word for the common interest.  There has been a continuous public outcry on city garbage and waste management since these guys came in to the municipal offices.

Somaliland is at cross roads

More than a decade ago or so, Somaliland has adopted the multiparty political system in its best interest to transform both the social and political structures of her nation, and of course to deviate if not alleviate the tribal political stagnations, but due to the grim challenges exposed mainly by the lack of a full-fledged recognition, the political climate of the country has been changing. The national political parties aimed at progressively promoting an egalitarian society have unfortunately descended into properties owned by mainly the middle sub clans and their affiliations.

Somaliland belongs to neither a dynasty nor an emperor but the tribal affiliations shapes it like a money pool subscription (hagbad in Somali language) where one tribe has a turn to rule the nation for one term and the other for the next, which has no place in the democratic principles and probably could dissolve the nation and demote their will to have a well-balanced and inclusive government, the ownership of which is equally claimed and safeguarded.

Today, the political parties are all out traversing across the widths of the draught bitten regions, shamelessly reselling their old rhetoric through untimely campaigns and causing the hungry people in frayed clothes to scamper towards their microphone mounted vehicles.  This is inhuman and a deliberate transgression of the moral principles. Today, people do not really need campaigns but a survival strategy for both their lives and possessions.  The geopolitics in both regional block and the international are the other factors that directly affect the nation and need to be wisely addressed.    

All in all, irrespective of the political party we would like to see in power with its dummy promises. Somaliland needs a true leadership armed with a limitless ambition and a vision to push boundaries beyond the unthinkable. It needs a new change which would not add to the number of changes already seen, but a change that could project a new paradigm shift to rectify whatever went wrong; a change that would not further disintegrate the country into small tribal fiefdoms, but a change that can work on mending them back as a common country; and finally, a change that can replace the interconnected cynical sycophants (Guulwadayaasha) by both elite and young graduates.

Khadar Hanan
Doha, Qatar

Friday, July 31, 2015

Tribalism: My Peoples’ Satanic Doctrine

I have seen it taking my people’s will towards unknown future; I have seen it degrading the moral values of my culture; I have seen it growing considerably bigger in the hearts and minds of the upcoming generations; yet, I have seen it affecting every single aspect of my people's lives. Why TRIBALISM?

Glancing back at centuries in my peoples’ patriarchal lives, warrior-life-style coupled with artistic creativity by nature in the form of poetry and ballads was the only fashion(s) someone or some tribe would demonstrate their status all and sundry. Livestock possessions especially the camel was the epicenter for tribal pride and magnanimity over their peers in their socio-pastorals community dispersedly lived across swaths in the horn of Africa. Forceful displacements for land expansion(s) and confiscations of the possessions (livestock) in the form of robbery amongst the major clans were the reason to wage wars on each other, where the literature “a more propagandistic than realistic” was as well the mere mainstream media.

This life-style prior to the centuries however, had been gradually conformed into a low profile driven civilizations, where the tribes from the same ancestral-roots had formed small villages fitted for their existence. This was the unpopular villageization evolution, where those who bankrupt their livestock due to the tough seasonal droughts or wars were the class to venture village adventures. Strict cultural norms and values amongst the societies was the rule of law at the time. Though, the people were 100% Muslim; the Muslim theology was relatively lesser, as the Dervish (a sufi Mulism ascetic path) known for their chants to commend Prophet Mohamed (Pbh) were the major source of the religion. Yet again, it is undeniable that this was a good ground that had preserved the people from the deceitful and daring influences of the Christian ideologies.  Sultans, tribal chiefs and elders were the only leadership elite class that would broker, arbitrate and decisively reach a resolution towards any issues. Strong cultural based conflict practices were the binding principles for achieving a lasting resolution to any problem(s) so happened between the tribes. Any breach of the resolution or any failure to comply with such cultural norms by a tribe or individual__ forfeiting of wealth (livestock), social ostracism or complete disenfranchisement were like the penalty-codes to be slapped with. Where as on the contrary, full compensation(s) to the loss so happened, exchanging brides and creating new affinities between the hostile tribes were like cementing the resolution to perpetuate the peaceful coexistence of the society.

Cultural Pride Vs Colonization

When the western colonial powers (The so-called British Somaliland) disembarked into the Somali territories in the mid 1880s, they studied about the tribal affiliations and how they could simply be manipulated by just using the elite class we have mentioned earlier. As the history narrates, there were apparent moral and armed rebellions erupted between what the colonial conquerors had to dictate and the solidness of this culture. The Dervish armed rebellion headed by Mullah Mohamed Abdullah Hassan and the clear stance(s) by the Sultans at the time are a good example for it. Never-ever-bow to what the disbelievers import was the tactical warfare underpinning my peoples’ inner strength to confront this alien invasion. Notwithstanding, the British had defeated the Dervish (Darweesh) led armed rebellion by using some of the major tribes. This is very long and vast history in fact, which a single piece of writing would never be enough to be recapitulated, but mission of mine is to precisely shed some light on the chronology of the early lives and culture of my people, which could presumably be the roots of today’s tribal ill practices.

What is Tribalism?

Though, I have shared the same once before with my friends on the social media (FB), allow me to share it here with you all again verbatim. Back to my varsity-days in India, the final year of my Master Degree program__ unlike the common Indians who mainly do not bother about the global affairs; a young dynamic varsity mate approached me and asked where I was from? I vividly replied, “I am from Somalia”. Somalia! Can you please tell me why Somalia never stabilizes for quite long time, he asked?  My reply “It’s all about tribalism”. Tribalism! The man says!!! What does that mean please? He asks again. He continues, ‘do you mean because of different religious believes or cast-system? As both the former and the later are of the root causes of Indian communal fights. I said no, yet I told him about having one religion, one language and culture; absolutely a homogeneous people in the horn of Africa.  So what, he asked? To find the answer for this question__ Hmm, I twisted my brain to come up with a lasting yet digestible an unequivocal answer, but I could not. I eventually drew ambiguous reply perhaps to get myself out of this shameful embarrassment.  This has drastically taken me far beyond words, as I have asked myself many times about tribalism and how these sinister practices have become a nationwide outbreak.

What is a tribe?

Ontologically, we can say it’s an identity based on solid proximity and kinship that separates someone or some tribe from others within the people or society in an area, a country or a continent etc. It’s a genealogy and mythology related architecture which enable people uphold and preserve their identity in the longer run, so that their roots would ever be kept intact. I think I won’t be good enough to draw a better or more in-depth definition(s) to the question above than those who specializes in Metaphysics or   Engaged theory, as they can help us understand more about the social complexity structures and their interrelations through more empirical analysis. This paragraph is from personal research in an attempt to know about what tribe could mean in different cultures globally and to let myself be equipped with all the necessary resources to give a concurrent answer to any future similar question posed by that young Indian guy.
But the question is, “would the subjectivity of my answer any way do with the objectivity of such question”? The answer is an emphatic “NO”.  
Being a Muslim by Allah’s grace, the below verse in the Holy Book (the Qur’an) which is quite explicit to the subject matter was always clicking in the back of my head, and as soon I have read about it with my full attention; I confess, there is no a single more convincing unequivocal statement than the below in regard with my query above where Allah SWT says:

O mankind! Indeed; We created you from a male and a female and We made you nations and tribes that you may know one another. Indeed, (the) most noble of you near Allah (is the) most righteous of you. Indeed, Allah (is) All-Knower, All-Aware.

Repeating this verse in the holy Qur’an several times, I was finding myself like absorbing in a great deal the very substance of our genetic impulse that goes alone with every heartbeat of ours (tribe devotion), and how Allah SWT clearly praised those who are righteous but not those whose tribal egos lays their bricks to build a foolish status. I am asking myself since our doctrine preaches this, why satanic doctrine?

Tribalism and its discontent

From Somali practices perspective, tribalism is nothing more than supremacism driven psychological notion and as Somalia slipped into the decades long vicious circles, tribal affiliations have enormously re-emerged and took the power from a vacuum. However, some of the tribes have collectively succeeded to set up Defacto state and intern survived from the ongoing deflagrations of the southern Somalia. Somaliland has opted for secession in the mid-1991 after the collapse of the dictatorship regime. Puntland have later on joined in a relatively lesser role and formed an autonomous or semiautonomous state of Somalia, where they have also succeeded to nurture peace within their territory.  The rest of what was the greater Somalia have relatively failed to achieve a consensus to promote peace amongst their people and still copes with the burdens of instability, local and imported (the AU).

Tribalism is the source of the Somali problems in toto; it’s an institution where the wordmongers, shameless cultural leaders, corruptive politicians, heartless warlords, jackals and Trojan horse(s) hired by Somali enemies graduates. Tribes are the root cause of their problems as they are the hard cheque(s) which these groups use in their best interest but not the common interest. It acts as the only platform where the failed part of the society from within and the Diaspora attest their disqualifications and joins uncensored into the political stir of the country. Yet it’s, where the mindless tribes who facilitate them do their job are the collective victims of what they have sowed by their hands alone. In other words, it’s like an expiry-free death certificate issued for the elimination of hundreds of thousands of Somalis. Believe me, “tribe affiliation is what can buy you the power today in Somalia”, no matter how your background exposes your incompetency__ still you can simply be a Minster, MP, VP or even the president of the country.

Bias, nepotism, opportunity-centrism and power concentration to clan affiliations are what drives the whole nation. A captain without proper navigation system had sailed off the ship of my people (country) with no lifeboats and left floating unattended for more than two decades. People are suffering and had been suffering from a pain the causation of which was diagnosed (tribalism) but kept uncured.

Somalia is a country where tomorrow lies for; people seem to be disappointed and losing the patience to meet what their future has in store for them. Let’s not be disappointed because the solution to our problems still lies in our hands, read about the world history to know what had happened in Somalia still amounts only fractions to what had happened in all the continents.
Let’s say ‘NO’ to tribalism; let’s say ‘YES’ to governance and prosperity.

By. Khadar Hanan

Doha, Qatar.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Fall in oil prices: An interest oriented crisis

Do you sometimes check yourself that you are literally a fuel-powered machine? Why traditional hydrocarbon products often affect our lives so extensively? What are the conspiracy theories on the global oil plunge? Why do we worry about a potential global depression?

No doubt at all, that we are all on board a west-controlled economic vehicle moving in a world driven by corporatocracy, bureaucracy, interest, greed, omission, nepotism and deception of every shape. Ordinary people caught between the global media, which is more propagandistic than realistic and conspiracies, which are more opaque than transparency.  Oil prices would fall deeper in the coming months, as Brent Crude, the main global oil benchmark has virtually bowed down to the heat, as it was traded below $50 a barrel let alone the other benchmarks, like West Texas Intermediate (WTI) and Dubai Crude. Analysts are forecasting more market panics and low tide of investments in the capital markets as the price could possibly go below $40 a barrel in the coming months. 

Bad news for the capital markets if the fall in oil prices keeps on the same track in the coming months and the situation could even go from bad to worse if the majority of oil cartel “OPEC” defiantly stays on this rocky trail of pumping millions of barrels into the global commodity markets on daily basis.  
We see both the regional and global markets plummet and needs different policies to be adopted by OPEC to let the markets steadily rally and hence the investors’ faith and confidence is revived.

Why fall in oil prices?

Being navigating between different analyses by different prominent economists and international market gurus, coupled with market news bulletins shared through the media of all types; to give a concurrent answer on the above question would take a time. But, make no mistake; if you look back at US, the domestic giant oil producers had almost doubled their production during the last half a decade. This has virtually marginalized the imports of huge volumes of crude oil from many OPEC member countries, like the Gulf, Persian allies, and African oil riches as well. According to NY times, in US average household would save nearly $800 of oil consumption expenses this year. Owing to this fact, you can simply know by the help of the basics of economics that the theory on “Demand Vs Supply” would justify and convince you about this untimely oil price dive.
On the other hand, when you look at the collective commitment of the world industrialized countries on lowering the green-gas emissions and promoting greener energy policies to safeguarding the environment. Many prominent European and East-Asian countries have developed a fuel efficient echo-friendly technology which would substantially slow down the greed demand for importing more oil from the OPEC members. 

Who will feel the heat?
As the matter of fact, every country with oil based economic muscle would get bruised by this fall in oil price. Even USA would suffer a lot, as many loan ridden drilling companies need to pay back their debts to their respective lenders (banks) and answer their investors’ investments (shareholders), whereas many other small scale oil business could possibly wind-up their work. This would firstly depress the human capital in these fields and secondly many other businesses worldwide.

Theories on keeping Market share rather than the Price

Saudi Arabia (the biggest OPEC oil producer) and its allies’ continuous support of not cutting the daily output to enable the global commodity markets take a U-turn and stabilize the oil prices is the real force behind the oil decline. This is an absolute interest oriented move. According to them, they are on the course to take care of the market segment rather than the price. For, losing the market segment would benefit their market competitors and would sideline their production.

 A question may there for be asked, why market segment rather than the price? The answer is so simple, on one hand, It’s real that Iraq and Libya, are pumping and even selling oil clandestinely in black markets which would saturate the potential oil markets and, on the other hand, as we have mentioned earlier USA are now relies much on their local oil production as they have doubled pumping oil during last five to six years, many other European counterparts have slowed down their oil consumption by the blessings of their technology as well. So, now the major market has become Asia (the world’s most populous continent) and OPEC members seems to be competing to secure their market grip in Asia rather than the price. After the market confirmation Saudi Arabia and their allies in the region say the prices would climb high, but this lies under a huge economic contingency as there is no credible outlook for maintaining their market segments to bolster the price. This reality could translate Saudi’s steadfastness on oil over-supply even if the price goes below $40 a barrel to bluffing only; and at this juncture, we cannot rule out any immediate move to a different direction by OPEC.  In contrast, Algeria, Iran and Venezuela “a traditional hydro-carbon based economies trio”, are not happy with such low levels of oil prices and tried to find a different policy to heat up the price, by just cutting the high levels of oil pumping to leverage the market, but their collective efforts seem to have been swallowed by the mightiness of their competitors like Saudi Arabia.

Other floating theories on that the fall of prices is a clear policy against punishing Russia and Iran, could not possibly be a good testimony as both the countries are one of the most resourceful countries in the world. Furthermore, this problem would not ever be contained within them as it would be a shared responsibility by the global oil producers of all continents.

According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the gulf and its Persian oil giants could suffer a loss of about $300 billion this year alone if they fail to find an easy way out of this menace.
Finally, fall in oil prices could seem chilling news for an ordinary household as they would argue that they are enjoying with the fuel budget savings, but to worry about a potential regional or global depression seems to be viable as the oil acts the biggest drug that stimulates the global markets. As the financial markets rule the global economy, any loss of faith in investing would touch every level of our society, business institutions of all types would turn around to their cost cutting policies and in turn this would eventually damage the disposable income of every household (that’s you and me).   

Khadar Hanan

Doha, Qatar.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Hargeisa water supply will no longer be a conundrum

It was a sunny day at around 13 hours Hargeisa local time. The temperature was far beyond bearable as a result of scorching sun in the mid of a clear day. During these hours pet animals even seek shelter to escape from the heat of the sun, let alone a human soul. I was at the wheel on my way home when I incidentally set my eyes on a mother holding bunches of both empty and filled or half-filed five liter-sized plastic Jerry cans in her hands.  My brain instantly helped me address about the mother’s job to be a milk seller__ not at a single static kiosk but just moving on foot across the width of her neighborhoods and by using her modest voice to bring her potential buyers’ attention towards her presence with a fresh milk. My brain waves further immobilized all my feelings towards assessing curiously the kind of message her physical status sending not only to me but to every human__ capable of thinking about others’ lives. Absolutely exhausted; but under her personal or familial circumstances, still robust and moving. Within fractions of a second, the mother called a man standing at a door-step of a shop roughly 50 meters away from her and requested him drive his water-tanker-mounted-vehicle to her house and fetch a drinking water.

 A bigger feeling suddenly struck in me again__ just asking myself how this woman was suffering from the reality in which her right to access clean water was long in between big questions marks. Tough times never last but tough people do (Robert H. Schuller).Owing to my personal evaluation; the mother was seemingly tough, wise and responsible as she has presumably taken the hot seat to be the bread winner for her family in the absence of her husband, either by death or otherwise or under the shadow of addiction-driven-irresponsibility behavior that molds differently the lives of many Somali families in and around the world. Yet, a bitter feeling embittered me a lot knowing the cost of such water is quite burden on her and everyone in her peers. It enormously affected me beyond words as such cost of one barrel of water (roughly 2.00 USD) is not onetime cost but recurring for her family 24/7 and 365 days of the year. In other words, such cost is great burden vis-à-vis the meagre income she generates from the sale of milk daily.

 Hargeisa is a city with unique qualities; the city rests in a beautiful mountainous landscape; residentially expanded and abundantly populated as well. It’s a city on a course of embracing its multicultural demographics by just transforming from exclusive homogeneous inhabitants to cosmopolitan. Unlike many other cities in Somaliland, it’s simple to see many expatriate communities who are running with their lives freely in Hargeisa today. The city’s water infrastructure, which is deeply dilapidated, was built by the Chinese in the early 1970s, just to serve the inhabitants of that time roughly 200,000 people only. The water system of the city had suffered the damages so reached by the wars resulted the dethronement of the authoritarian regime of Siad Barre.

Hargeisa water scarcity had never been attributed to low volume levels what so ever, but apparent negligence and mismanagement in great deals. No tangible expansion was made with the city’s major water infrastructure by the former Somaliland administrations either; whilst huge sums in the form of donations from the international donors are said to have had mysteriously been disappeared into the hands of the corruption ridden individuals/institutions.

According to 2008 EU-funded study on Hargeisa Urban Water Supply Upgrading Project (HUWSUP), by UN-Habitat and in the partnership with the Hargeisa Water Agency and the then Somaliland Ministry of Mining, Energy and Water Resources (now separated into two full-fledged ministries). The European Union has generously granted 15 million EUR from the European Development Fund to help alleviate the city’s long problems on clean and portable water. This huge capital underlying project was said to have been subjected to a timeframe of roughly 40 long months of construction and capacity building and would hopefully be ready to deliver by mid or late 2016.
HUWSUP will build a new pipeline network, and revamp and improve pumping capabilities. In addition, HUWSUP will rehabilitate old water boreholes, and drill new water boreholes so as to further develop Hargeisa’s current water system, and expand the water sustainability.

Water shortage is not common for the city’s neighborhoods as mostly the northern and some parts in the middle neighborhoods enjoy the blessings of the old water-lines, whereas, mostly the southern, eastern and parts in the western of the city do not sooth their thirst with a single drop came in through the ordinary water-taps!! Unlike the former Somaliland administrations since its birth, the incumbent administration has taken a different policy with regard to the in betterment of the city-water-supply by simply taking advantages of similar donations given by the UAE patronages. UAE funded project on water explorations and drilling new wells in 2008-09 was behind the boreholes in the Humbo-wayne area in Hargeisa outskirts. These new water discoveries would come through the most viable road map to mainly two big under construction reservoirs with the latest know-how and is aimed at serving water for parts of the middle, eastern, southern and southwestern neighborhoods of the city. Both the EU & UAE funded projects were in progress to meet their objectives amid tentative hindrances by interest-oriented challenges and sabotages of both individuals and tribal disguises.

Hargeisa principal water-supply-system “a quite long conundrum” seems to be eventually answered by action not by words any more. People of the city are eagerly waiting to equally enjoy one day with the most precious natural resource in their homeland (the water). The mother with the milk in the streets would hopefully divert much of her daily expenses on water to the saving-box of her family.

Khadar Hanan
Doha, Qatar. 

Tuesday, September 23, 2014


Somalia had perfectly conformed to a sinister road map drawn by some exogenous powers using her frontline neighbors with other African countries as their mere Trojan-horse to accomplish their consciously architected plots against the Somali people and they really succeeded it. The thousands of AMISOM troops deployed to Somalia under the name of “UN backed African Union peace-keeping mission” have like Black-water agendas to execute, arrest, intimidate, rape and steal as much wealth as they can. Their hidden agenda is to disintegrate further the Somali people state and social wise, turn against each other among themselves, compartmentalize and later on balkanize the entire country into small puppet territories, so that dictate to every small part in the way fits in their both common and individual interests . Their mission is apparently too dire savagery in disguise and far beyond humanitarian mission.

The endless whole sale and retail topsy-turvydom in Somalia have caused the people suffer from horrible crimes committed by their collective savages viz. government soldiers, African troops and Terrorist out fits. The Human Rights Watch (HRW) report released in Nairobi recently on how the so-called African Peace Keeping Mission abuses with impunity the very venerable women who enter their military-facilities for seeking medical help or fetch drinking water __ hurts a lot not only every compatriot, but the very essence of human consciousness.  Crimes being committed by such armed strangers within the existence of all weak yet corruption ridden institutions that forms the Somali government headed by President Hassan Sheikh.  If African Union enjoys the power loop wholes of its host nation and feel it like a congenial atmosphere to work in; history would never exonerate them and the lost accountability would one day be materialized in the face of justice. Furthermore, it would be a shameful amulet that would keep hanging from the neck of President Hassan Sheikh and his government officials; it would as well remain a social disgrace amongst the entire nation whose actions bread the seeds that germinate the endless vicious-cycle in the country. 

The African Mission’s carnivorous troop actions manifest the vacuum of neither strong military code of conduct from within nor external regulations imposed by the Somali government. The chain of invasions orchestrated by exorbitant powers of similar types on Somalia since the genesis of her implosion in 1991__ had been committing almost the same fashion of abuses amongst the Somali people. All the different crimes so committed differently by Somali different invaders since then, remain not apprehended and the incurable deep wounds so reached the Somali impoverished people still bleeds from inside. This is because, apart from feared social stigma reprisals; the Somali strong yet conservative culture have instigated into the hearts of thousands of raped women to omit their ordeals; forced them accept to live with the physical and psychological scars reached by the heinous abuses against them. Thousands of tortured innocent civilians accepted to live with their pain without fear; yet thousands of war disabled, orphans and widows had accepted the reality to live with such conditions never pleases a living soul to bear.

The HRW group have mentioned in their report that very young girls below the age of 15 are among the victims of this inhuman crimes. Some of the victims are said to have even contracted with sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) from their abusers. The heart agonizing feeling is on how these internally displaced people (IDP) especially women had become a defenseless prey for such foreign cannibals within their very unfortunate homelands.  Burundian and Ugandan solders are said to have been the culprits of all the abuses so far recorded, however, the military basis of the other forces on the similar mission__ viz. Kenyan, Djiboutian and Sierra Leon was difficult to be penetrated, but believed to have had the same abuses done in their premises as well (the report adds).  All these systematic crimes against the priceless Somali women were neither a Stockholm syndrome nor a choice less sale of their bodies per se, but a deliberate force to degrade further the already depleted pride of the Somali people at large and in particular our women.   

The other nerve-racking issue is that, all the ugly-missions’ soldiers enjoy with the blessings of the exclusive jurisdictions by their root-countries and no strictly monitored external disciplinary guidelines were ever placed in the best interest of the protection of any potential wrong doings against the Somali people. 

Where things have gone wrong?

It is certain phenomena that once foreign troops are dispatched to a foreign country with either politically motivated or humanitarian mission, they virtually commit to crimes against humanity. Just glance back at what NATO, UN and US missions have done with the people of Iraq, Afghanistan, Haiti, and many other countries out of their jurisdictions. Most crimes committed by combined forces of NATO and US are by drone bombardments on the civilian cities targeting individuals whom they have concerns in their so-called war on terror. To see troops with a clean sheet would be very unlikely if not impossible because it is perhaps a psycho driven action and counter reaction in the absence of noble self-restraint. UN, NATO and US led troops, however, have their own combat-code-of-conducts in place with respect of their soldiers’ extra judicial crimes. It’s hard to be digested fact, that the AMISOM mission in Somalia lacks any common curbs on their loathsome behavior with their absolutely unprotected people.

A thoroughly investigation of these crimes is wisely acceptable to be undertaken as being hinted by the AU officers, but again those who are responsible to check and monitor the genuine process are the officers of the same mission. This is like a thief entrusted to judge a theft-case in which he was involved.  Would he judge justly? The answer is NO.  

Government merry-go-round

Power hunger, bureaucratism, tribalism, opportunism and corruption etc. are the only commodities that are widely traded well within the government in Mogadishu. The bureaucratic MPs who represent the needy people are made like voting machines in the influence of whoever bid to tap the power steering to drive the nation.  Notwithstanding, cabinet ministers are transformed to external stooges implementing commands given by the above said extraneous powers. Imagine why every new prime minister appointed and the incumbent president often have immediate loggerheads that would prompt untimely legislative meetings to redress the portfolio they have already ratified. Why such misunderstanding often arises between two intimate friends who came forward together to serve their ruined nation? Why? Why? 

On the other hand, stray government soldiers feel no sympathy for their exposed people either, owing to the fact that many of them are challenging with undiagnosed trauma inflicted by the long-standing hostilities of every scale. Many more of them are trained by the abusers in their countries and programmed with the same versions of abominate ideologies; where as many others have slipped into the whim of the extremism by giving them an audacious help to act against the nation and the government.    

Politicians often believe in that the ends would justify the means; all campaign rhetoric often fades away soon as they fit their self into the seats. But their words would never deplete from the hearts of the cheated nation. Surely, all the abuses against our brethren are happening in the absence of strong and just governance. Still Somalis are people in search for the right leaders and a country in search for the right people”.

May ALLAAH SWT guide the Somali people to the righteous bath and the wisdom to know the stake they have in their future. 

By: Khadar Hanan
Doha, Qatar.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Every drop of blood spilled from the Somalis in Kenya would REALLY mark a bold spot in the book of modern history.

The so-called shifta war during 1963-67 in the 20th century which had caused the loss of lives of thousands of innocent but defenseless people and confiscations of hundreds of thousands of livestock was far from over, yet it has merely taken a new but deceitful scale of modern skullduggery. Let’s glance back at the history, ethnic Somalis in the Northern Frontier District (NFD) were axed from the Jubaland region in the southern Somalia in 1925 by the British colonials as they had concur this fertile territory with the immense gift of nature and resources. The British ceded the north as a hard pay-cheque to the Italian in return to what presumably had been the price they had paid in lining up with the British in the World War One. What was left behind, “the southern part of the said region had been rebranded as NFD (todays Northeastern Province) and annexed to Kenya by the British Colonial Administration”. It is Kenya’s third largest region borders Somalia in the north, exclusively and sparsely domiciled by ethnic Somalis.

In 1960s as the Somali nationalistic waves engulfed across the horn of Africa to form a ban Somali government (inclusive of all five Somalis viz; the present Somaliland, Somalia (south), NFD, Somali people in the eastern state of Ethiopia and the Republic of Djibouti). Such patriotism driven force with the anticipative dream to breath in the breeze of freedom in their own lands had shortly been faded away after the Somali right-of-self-determination was deceptively taken by their oppressor (The British). Just try to shed some more light on this; we are talking about the Somali people prior to quarters of a century, who almost had no professional doctor, no professor, no engineer, no charismatic political leader and in toto no civilization rather than tribal war tactics. In contrast, they lived with dignity and pride fostered by a well-founded culture, which would prohibit them became jackals for their enemy and smear themselves with such stigmas on the faces of many Somali politicians of all walks today. They accompanied with such strong culture that breaches to prefer death over slavery, straggle over humiliation and hunger over handouts. In a nut shell, a noble culture that would prohibit them did much of our today’s business as usual.

As the history narrates, the real focus of the British policy on the region was about to bring all Somali territories under one administrative roof belongs to Somalis at large, but this has drastically taken a U-turn shortly after when Somaliland was granted its full-fledged independence by the British on 26 June 1960. The NFD was granted to Kenya far beyond a formal plebiscite expressly depicting the collective choice of the ethnic people in the region. The faith of the Somalis in NFD had further doomed when Kenya was too granted its independence roughly three years after Somalia on August 1963.  This is because; Kenya had apparently refused to give up this land to the Somalis and their common oppressor had had the biggest hand in glove with this plot against Somalis. 

It was neither adoration nor naturalization based temptations, but a trial to legitimize the annexation of such lands to the territory in their jurisdictions to enjoy with the wealth and promise that this land held in a store. In the same year infamous uprising forged by the Kenya-Somalis had inevitably begun using anything that could amount to be a weapon. To accomplish their job; Kenya had engaged in a disproportionate force with the people, massacred unrecorded number, turned their ancestral lands into concentration camps, deprived them from the very basics of livelihood, death from starvation, torture of every scale, rampant rapes and confiscation of enormous number of Somali livestock. That gloomy era was sealed off with a deal between Somalia (the backbone of the revolt) and Kenya brokered by the government in Darussalam (Tanzania) in the year 1967. A delegation led by the prime minister of Somalia Mr. Mohamed Haji Ibrahim Egal was sent to sign the ceasefire accord.  This deal had undermined the armed revolt,  helped Kenya retained the firm control over the region and transformed the long standing primary pastoralist transhumant-lifestyle into more static secondary Villagizations, impoverishing the people by killing and taking their only wealth in hand (the livestock).  Despite a sporadic banditry the faith of that straggle had no choice but ended up to surrender.  This had dropped a no choice sense of stability across the NFD region, and dressed up both the physical and psychological scars. The question is, thought the wounds were dressed up__ are they really healed?

Right from the late 1970 till early 1980s_ different atrocities were unfolded that prompted the occurrence of the one of the worst collective punishment in the region’s history, “the Wallaga pogroms” in which thousands more ethnic-Somalis were systematically killed and raped in response to what Kenyan government mentioned the execution of four Kenyan officers by unknown armed bandits.  A heinous crime against humanity which Kenya still enjoys not apprehended in the eyes of the contemporary world, whereas today many Kenyan top officials are under the world’s microscope for the crimes they have committed during the postelection bloody violence in 2007-08.  

On 29 January 1991; the genesis of Somalia showdown

Roughly, ten years old armed rebellion hails from some major clans have collectively succeeded the ultimate derailment of the military government headed by Siad Barre (the hardline dictator). All the armed opposition groups are said to have had a common goal congruence, just to remove the dictator from the helm and proceed to building a stronger and more inclusive government. Soon after Siad Barre was ousted; Somalia had slipped into a vicious circle, unleashed the entire country specially the “South” into an even darker era which still counts its aging years for more than two decades and on (it’s more than the tenure of Siad Barre). Civil wars coupled with starvations, diseases, warlordism, terrorism, regional and international interventions, have collectively undersigned the death certificate of hundreds of thousands of Somali people. This had eventually triggered a huge exodus to the neighboring countries and the other world as well both by land and sea, just seeking shelter to refuge from the conflagration in their homeland.  Hundreds of thousands of them made their ways crossed into Kenya. The refugees initially drew a warm welcome and friendly hospitality from the Kenyan government and people with sing boards written a short phrase (Kenya Hakuna Matata) which translates “in Kenya there is no problem”. In turn, Kenya has benefited and booked billions of dollars from the hand it had stretched out to these needy people in terms of employment and investment etc.

Refugee Status permutations

Somali people are said to be very good at making business and this had caused many of them move from the refugee camps to the mega cities in an attempt to grab their share and transform their living conditions. Nairobi one of Africa’s most vibrant capital cities hosted Somalis both the refugees and the citizens in the same corner. Eastleigh neighborhood known as the “little Mogadishu” turned into almost an exclusively Somali inhabitant area of the city; businesses flourished, opportunities blossomed and the sky seemed the potential limit for their success stories.  Kenya’s failure in understanding that there are inextricably strong ties of blood and culture between her ethnic Somalis and those from Somalia, has also failed to draw a line between her people and the refugees, all are painted by the same brush and all are heavily paying the price of what their government imported from abroad (Somalia).

Somalis in Nairobi have injected millions of dollars into the country’s economy; created thousands if not hundreds of thousands of employment opportunities for the locals; pay tax with integrity and contribute to the national fiscal-policy. All those revenue flowed out from their pockets had never bounced back from the government’s treasury even to the least percentage to develop health, education and infrastructure for the under privileged shabby corner contained with the Somalis. Despite depraving all these necessities; Eastleigh progressed into a ghetto of great abundance and hope for the Somalis, but for the Kenyans as God’s gift to wait and closely watch with eagerly eyes.

In October 2011 Kenyan forces have crossed into Somalia to fight with Al-shabab in the pretext of protecting their nation. Protection has turned into a severe retribution in which Al-shabab vowed to repatriate the outcome of Kenya’s invasion back to their homes.  Kenyan people have largely experienced a wave of attacks including the siege of Nairobi Mall on late of September last year, in which scores of innocent people have lost their lives. Though, many Kenyans similarly believe this as the consequence of their government’s invasion_ again many others do believe that Somalis in their towns are part of the problem. This is why every Somali in Kenya’s big cities senses the heat of an untimely backlash.  President Uhuru Kenyatta’s speech on the eve of the West Gate Mall siege has in fact dosed any potential flames of backlash and sent cables of tolerance and co-existence across the nation. It has dropped a positive message into the hearts and minds of many Somalis that they owe the country a lot more beyond they thought. To everyone’s astonishment, the president’s message-tone was different from the script it was written. Early in April last month, Somalis in Nairobi woke up in a different morning; a huge raid on their residents and businesses, detentions without trials and deportations back to the lands they have lost in hostilities in which Kenya had become a part. Much of their wealth has been destroyed, forcefully confiscated and much more disappeared into the best interest of the relentless watchful eyes we have inked above.  This crackdown against Somalis is happening every single minute we pass by and still has invited no firm outcry or concern from the international community.

Make no mistakes!!! The amnesty of Somalis in Kenya is growing weaker and weaker in the hands of their own government, the sign boards were eroded and never repainted, the welcome phrase was replaced by a silent abominate. Hate graphs are on the rise amongst the nation, the finger is on the trigger, the hateful hands are reaching out capable weapons of all kinds, simply waiting for a sinister command to do.  

But the history would REALLY judge, mark bold and unchanged in the book of modern history.

By: Khadar Hanan

Date: 25-05-2014


Doha, Qatar.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Arabian Shisha Addiction; the hidden Scythe for Deforestations in Somalia

Kismanyo, a small city with a very small population strategically rests on the peninsula of the Indian Ocean coast in the lower juba state in Southern Somalia. Kismanyo corridor, which was built in the early 1960s for Somali-navies, today acts as a key business causeway between Somalia, the gulf and the east African countries.  After the collapse of the central government of Somalia, this resourceful town had unfortunately fallen into the hands of various malicious headed by some of the most notorious warlords before the up to date Kenyan backed forces who took the control from Islamist sect “Alshabab”.  This town had since became one of the worst gateways for Somali natural resources outflow, where much of the intangible wealth had been shipped away, like mammalian-livestock and the living trees. 

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The climate deteriorations have touched the world at large, but the western countries in particular. Kyoto Protocol was therefore held in Japan on 11 December 1997 and came into force on February 2005, where several unanimously agreed pre-emptive measures were made. Many prominent countries worldwide were the official signatories of this environmental pact, as it has invited a contentious ecological, economic and political argument among the world’s industrialized countries whose major concern was seeking a mutual policy on cutting the green-house-emissions in an attempt to promote a healthy green environment for better living conditions.
According to the National geography forests only cover 30 percent of the world’s land area, but widths of the swath in miles are lost in every single day by the hands of modern sinister business mongers. The world’s rain forests could completely vanish during this century at the current rate of deforestation proportionately.
 Prior to the colonial land border demarcations, Somali people who are one of the largest ethnic societies that occupies much of the lands in the eastern part of the African continent were livestock herders, artisans and agro-pastoral societies as well. Even more than half of the current Somali population in today’s contemporary world belongs to the same conventional life-style, enjoying with the nature in their terrestrial strata. Remember, the recent famine in some parts of the south-Somalia that terribly invited international media attentions was due to the pro-longed draughts, the underlying cause of which was attributed to the meager rainfalls and loss of the rainy forests by the hands of the mindless loggers. The said draughts have also driven many people from their territorial lands to a shanty refugee camps temporarily built in Mogadishu suburbs, still severing and exposed to an endless abuses.

USA on Somali charcoal imports:
A UN resolution on the ban of commercializing the territorial animals and trees was adopted in the year 1975 by its members__ provided there should be a legal license formally issued by a legitimate government.  Furthermore, two decrees numbered 20 and 27 issued by the last government of Somalia in the years 1967 and 1969 respectively__ were due to nix all exportations of mammalian animals and the charcoal. As there was no a functioning Somali central government for the past two decades the above said pact and decrees had dramatically disappeared, lawlessness and chaos taken the lead.  Today’s international outcry on Somali charcoal exports was prompted not by global concerns over the environmental abuses but apprehensions on Al-shabab’s financial sources.
 President Obama of the US has ordered the abrogation of the US imports of the Somali charcoal during his first tuner, not because of the appalling ecological situations there in Somalia but, his concerns over the Al-shabab’s significant revenues generated from this illegal source. It’s really disappointing that Obama only reiterated on the financial gains for Al-shabab but not on the environmental abuses caused by this cynical type of business.

 According to the UN report on July 2011__ the tax revenue that al shabaab used to levy on charcoal exportations was about 15 million US dollars a year. This is why Al-shabab’s presence in many parts of southern Somalia was in existence, yet gained firm grounds for exercising their power.  Though Al-shabaab seems to be losing their last standing leg today, yet this type of business remains unchanged.

Where charcoal exports end up:
The relentless demand from the world in general and that of the Arabian countries in particular is what keeps this product’s market bullish. This lucrative business was said to had been involved in hundreds of thousands metric tons of charcoal exports per year, the revenues of which is narrowed into the best interest of small groups of business predatory.  In the gulf, the charcoal consumption for households cooking is relatively less than that for shisha/hookah smoking.  The number of Shisha outlets mushrooming in the Arabian Peninsula is well reflecting on the growth rate of the charcoal demand levels on daily basis. This smoking habit was originally generated from Egypt but later on exported to the Middle East and many other countries across the globe. The global fight against tobacco is less effective due to the fact that it’s facing a fierce resistance from such addictions.

Somali charcoal exports lifecycle:

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As we are in bound with the time, as we are unsure about what tomorrow holds for the entire nation, if the current rate of deforestation keeps unchanged in Somalia, for how long it could take Somali forests to completely vanish?

By: Khadar Hanan
Doha, Qatar.