On December 12, a Waddani delegation led by Waddani new “leader”, Hersi Ali Haj Hassan, left for Nairobi, where, ostensibly, they were to join the Somaliland House Speaker, the founder of Waddani Party and its candidate for President in the upcoming elections and its current Chairman, Abdirahman Mohamed Abdullahi “Irro”, for state matters.
The delegation, ironically, included its newly elected candidate for the Vice Presidency of the country in the upcoming elections, Mohamed Ali, but as a nondescript, junior member, the same as ex-journalist-turned’politician’, Munir Ahmed Egal, and Abdirizak Khalif both of whom recently joined the party as members’ of Hersi’s entourage.
The delegation also included Dr. Mohamed Osman Fadal, an ex-minister of Planning in the Riyale era.
With House Speaker-cum-Waddani Chairman, Irro, in Nairobi was said to be the ‘interim Chairman’ in the shade of the actual Chairman and the ‘Leader’, Somaliland MP Abdulkadir Jirdeh, who were waiting for the later delegation to join them.
The Hersi delegation said they were leaving for Kenya to talk about the lifting of the Saudi ban on Somali livestock with the Kenyan community and the international community in Nairobi.
Soon upon arrival in Nairobi, Kenya, the Waddani delegation went into a flurry of shuttles and meetings with US, UN, European and IGAD representatives.
According to Munir Ahmed Egal’s Facebook, the Waddani delegation met with embassy officials representing the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Denmark and the European Union, as well as the Secretay General of IGAD.
At the meetings, the report said, the delegates from both sides of the different tables, discussed not the Saudi livestock ban – as was afore proclaimed – but on state matters that included the drought raging in Somaliland, recognition, and election issues.
Specifically, the posting copied above said, the United Kingdom pledged (to the Waddani delegation) 7 million Sterling pound emergency and relief support to drought victims where Germany announced that it will dish out 5 million Euros in aid relief. The others, the report adds, promised that their pledges will soon follow pending a fact-finding delegation they will be sending to Somaliland within the next two to three days.
And all this was the sole achievement of an opposition political party that had held its ever meeting only a month back – not the elected government, its ministry of foreign affairs or any other envoy that it formally delegated to touch base with the international community.
It must be marked, too, that the pledges – if indeed there were any – were not made in response to the elected President’s appeal to the international community on mid-November November.
If what the Waddani Facebook postings are, indeed, as reported then the international community has begun a coup de tat against the elected government of the Republic of Somaliland using Waddani as its vanguard assault team.
Or else, one of five other scenarios might have been enacted: (a) Waddani misreported the meetings in a bid to promote its diplomatic clout or (b) the international community was duped into thinking it was meeting a delegation from the Somaliland parliament with the Waddani delegation members posing as MPs; (c) Waddani got wind of an impending massive responsewhich the international community was going to make on drought relief efforts in response to His Excellency the President of Somaliland’s appeal and decided to steal the limelight on false pretenses before the response was officially released on either side; (d) the international community used an unwitting Waddani as pawns in a grand plan of its own to sow mistrust and strife among Somalilanders so the country can be used as putty in its hands as it is doing in Mogadishu to squander millions and millions of taxpayers’ money on goose chase, fruitless experiments; (e) Waddani, itself. is using the international community as a stepping stone to project itself forcibly to an international and national forum that it has yet to rightfully earn or win over.
If none of the above was the case, then, again, the international community and especially, the countries and organizations that received the renegade Waddani delegation, made the worst possible blunder, inflicting the worst possible damage to the integrity of the government and the people of the Republic of Somaliland, to democracy, to common decency and to international diplomacy.
With this happening at a juncture of time that the UNSOM and EU offices in Mogadishu are openly supporting and funding the so-called elections in Somalia that include MPs said to be representing Somaliland being ‘elected’ in heavily guarded compounds in Mogadishu in full view of an international community so earnestly practising double standards that can only result in the worst possible ‘consequences’ for bilateral relations with Somaliland – and the credibility of a ‘fair dealing’, humane, democratic world as was oft-professed. By so doing, the international community has already begun a coup favoring Somalia’s re-domination, re-persecution, re-pillaging of a Somaliland that lost a quarter million of its people wrenching back an independence it regrettably gave to Somalia on a silver platter once before in 1960.
On the other hand, Waddani has, of late, developed a habit which may have an adverse, often counter-productive effect on constituents and the world at large: it copies and tries to obliterate government initiatives in a bid to make them appear as one of its own. Of recent, it happened with DP World, the Khatumo meetings in Addis, the President’s drought appeal, planned tour of drought-affected areas and the shuttle diplomacy of Foreign Minister Saad Ali Shire and his meetings with about 11 ministers and Ministers of State of foreign countries to follow up on the President’s call to the international call.
These latest appearances in Nairobi in meetings with embassies is in line with above.
It must be pointed out, at this stage, that (1) MP Abdulkadir Jirde did not appear in the pictures posted of the Waddani meetings in Nairobi with the ‘international community’. This alone may signify much; (2) The national flag of the Republic of Somaliland is nowhere in sight in all of the meetings contradicting Waddani’s national-level assertions; (3) The meetings brought together a recent Minister of Foreign Affairs of Somaliland and an ex-Somalia Foreign Affairs on the same table under what common factor – other than “Waddani’s” – only God knows for certain.
None of the members in the delegation, furthermore, is known to be an avowed, sworn Somalilander: some are said to have Somalia leanings, some have been accused in the past of belonging to militant religious groups. Of the lot, only Munir and Jirde have no past, negative records.
Whichever way one looks at it, a heavy-handed blow has been dealt the people and government of Somaliland that cannot be easily or quickly swept aside.
The government must (a) demand explanation of the countries and organizations cited before taking a commensurate measure, and (b) Waddani must be brought to justice to answer on whose authority it represented the government, especially those members that are not currently shielded by a parliamentary immunity.