|Home | Contact us | Links | Archives | Search|
Puntland:" A State or a Parasitic Entity within the Body Politic Of Somalia?
Aug 06, 2007
By Prof Amina Mire
It is no secrete to most Somalis that Abdillahi Yusuf and other Puntland warlords in the transitional federal government [TFG], are using their current political power in the south to loot local businesses in Mogadishu such as the Bakaraha Market, engage in clan and subclan based revenge killings: all in the name of advancing their subclan Majeerteen power base in the separatist fiefdom of Puntland.
The recent inter-subclan war between Puntland militia directed by a cousin of Abdillahi Yusuf and another sublclan militia loyal to the Marihaan subclan, both of whom are from the Darod clan over the control of Kismayo, registers extent to which Puntland warlords have tried to advance their subclan power base using federal political and military clout. Puntland separatist criminal warlords in the TFG, such as Abdillahi Yusuf, are determined to use the resources from the Southern Somalia, in the forms of distortions, bribes, blood money, taxation schemes and outright looting to enrich their sub-clan power base separatist agenda in Puntland.
"Somalia president Abdillahi Yusuf, leading a delegation from Puntland, the semiautonomous province, arrived in the capital, Mogadishu, on 08/08/07. Adde Mussa, the president of Puntland, was among the delegation that has had meetings with Somalia officials in Mogadishu".
The question is can there be a legitimacy to a government run by separatist criminal warlords from Puntland in the name of Somalia's "national unity"? Naturally, one can point out Ali Mohamed Gedi and other Hawiye warlords "in bed" with Zenawi. But there is a significant difference between these criminal warlords and the Puntland warlords. In the case of Gedi et al. Hawiye dabodhilfs, the relevant question is clear: Gedi and other Hawiye warlords are the servants of Zenawi. Gedi cannot claim that the Abgaal subclan is backing him to set up a separatists fiefdom similar to that of Puntland.
Second, Puntland criminal warlords are determined to use their contradictory affiliations: both as separatist criminals and as foreign imposed rulers of Somalia to enact bogus laws designed to enrich themselves and their separatist state of Puntland ways in which Gedi has not been able to use his Abgaal subclan against the rest of Somalia.
"Sources closer to the government indicate that Puntland officials are in the capital to finalize some agreements signed by President Yusuf and President Adde Mussa who convened in Puntland during Yusuf's short trip there".
Naturally, agreements signed by criminal warlord from Puntland should have no legal standing on the rest of Somalia. It is clear that the Puntland warlords are anticipating their impending demise in the south and are determined to loot as much cash and resources while they can. This is one of the reasons why the Puntland separatist warlords are currently attempting to make dubious oil exploration deals with China. China has shown its capacity to do business with the most criminally-oriented regimes in Africa such as Meles Zenawi. China is now ready to do business with the criminal regime in Somalia and in Puntland.
"With a population of approximately 2.5 million, Puntland occupies the northeastern portion of the area compromising the post-colonial Somali republic.Puntland is socially dominated by the Darod clan family, with the most power residing in the Majerteen sub-clan of the Darod. Its major industries are livestock and fisheries, and exploration for oil and natural gas deposits is projected, as PINR detailed in its July 23 report. [See: " China Invests in Somalia Despite Instability"]
The narrowly conceived sublan nature of Puntland is very clear. However, I am going to stay clear from the number game of how many "millions of Majeerteens" are in Punland! The demographic density of Puntland is the least of my worries here. The illegal usurpation of political power by war criminals from Puntland is my main concern.
"Puntland came into being in August 1998, when Majerteen warlord Abdillahi Yusuf Ahmed – now president of Somalia's internationally recognized Transitional Federal Government (T.F.G.) – engineered the autonomy of the Nugal, Karkar, Bari and part of the Mudug regions. In 2002, Puntland forces occupied Darod-dominated parts of the Sool, Sanaag and Togdheere regions, which are claimed by Somaliland -- the territory of the former British Somaliland, which declared its independence from the rest of Somalia in 1991 and has failed to gain international recognition".
Here, I am interested to point out that whilst in their short lived tenure in political power, the Union of Islamic Courts was able to bring peace and security, including ending the menace of sea piracy in the areas in southern Somalia under its control,  the Puntland warlords represent a menacing force which is determined to destroy Somalia.
Puntland is a state within a state. It's a fiefdom which signifies a double game played by a group of Majeerteen subclan separatists. It is a parasitic entity in Somalia's national Bodypolitic.
"During its nine years of autonomy, Puntland has developed a political system characterized by a strong presidency and a weak legislature, which is not organized into parties. Until he assumed the T.F.G.'s presidency in 2004, Yusuf was Puntland's strongman, serving as its president from 1998 until 2001, and then from 2002 through 2004, after he militarily defeated his rival Jama Ali Jama, who had resisted Yusuf's efforts to extend his original term. Adde Muse was elected to Puntland's presidency by its parliament in 2005 and has attempted to follow the presidential model set by Yusuf".
Thus Puntland warlords, such as Abdillahi Yusuf, represent a clear and present danger tot the future of Somalia. And this was reported this morning in the Shabelle Media network: "Government troops have beaten Shabelle reporter, Nimo Hassan Abdi, while heading to School Polisiya in the capital where she was going to cover the closure of Seminar training Mogadishu district officials as the mayor, Mohammed Dheera and other officials from Puntland, the semiautonomous province in northeast Somalia, were present at the conclusion". It is pertinent to mention the reported was a Somali woman doing her job as a reporter.
Nimo Hassan Abdi
"She said she was hit with a gun-butt while showing the troops her identity card. "They hit me and punished me. They ordered me to sit and stand for nearly 15 minutes, " she said. She said they treated her unkindly. "I repeatedly told them I am a journalist. One of them said; if you were a journalist from Puntland, we would let you go, " she said".
For the people of Somalia the message is clear. The Puntland criminal warlords such as Yusuf, H Abshir, Mussa are the agents of foreign forces who are determined to instigate inter clan warfare in Somalia. These criminal warlords are playing right into the hands of Meles Zenawi. Zenawi is determined to instigate all out inter-clan warfare between the Hawiye and Darod clans. The enemies of Somalia such as Meles Zenawi and Puntland separatist warlords are today humiliating the people of Somalia. Somalis will struggle against these oppressive forces and victory shall be theirs.
By Amina Mire (Faculty), Department of Sociology and Anthropology of Carleton University, Ottawa Canada