Somaliland: President Discusses Country’s Situation with EU Ambassadors and UK DFID officials.
Photo courtesy of Somaliland Press
A delegation of European Union emissaries and members of the International Co-operation Agency (UK DFID) met with the President of Somaliland on Tuesday (9 February) to discuss the upcoming election, problems with the Federal Government of Somalia, capital punishment, Somaliland’s development plan and the severe drought currently affecting the region.
Below is an amended article published by The Somaliland Press:
H.E President Ahmed Mohamed Mahmoud Silanyo on Tuesday (9 February) met with a high level delegation comprising of European Union emissaries led by (Ms. Mette Knudsen), Holland (Mr. Frans Makken), Norway (Mr. Victor Conrad Ronneberg) and International Co-operation Agency UK DFID for Somaliland / Somalia (Mr. Phil Evans) and consisting of 11 members.
President Ahmed Mohamed Mahmoud Silanyo first and foremost thanked the visiting emissaries who, representing the countries, are in the forefront in supporting the development for undertaking the important visit. President Silanyo during the meeting discussed a number of issues with the delegation, these were:
Upcoming Election Issues:
President Silanyo told Ambassadors of Denmark, Holland, Norway and Britain that the government and people of Somaliland would like to express their profound gratitude for the continuance of support for the country in the democratization process, particularly in providing assistance to the National Electoral Commission on the ongoing Voter registration issues. The President told the delegation that the voter registration project is going well and will soon start in the region of Awdal. The President also told the visiting delegation that the government is committed to holding a free and fair Presidential and Parliamentary election, which is due to take place in March 2017, and hopes for their continued support in the electoral process.
The Federal Government of Somalia’s continued interference in Somaliland Internal Affairs:
President Silanyo also informed the delegation about the interference in Somaliland internal affairs by the federal government of Somalia and said: “The communique recently issued by the Federal Government related [that in the] electoral process [taking] place in 2016, in response to Somaliland will make a special election in contributing. Now here I am again before you clearly to once again reaffirm the Republic of Somaliland does not include what is called a member of the Federal Government of Somalia. Our country is not part of, nor is in anyway part of the federal system of government [nor] shall it be part of any election…[taking] place in 2016. Therefore, the word from the Federal Government is based on fantasy and far from reality, meant to deceive and lure the international community and its citizens. The Republic of Somaliland government came to being on the wishes of its people. We have a democratic system in our country; we have held several fair and free elections witnessed by the international community. Therefore we were not part of [the] federal government in the past, nor shall we be part of any entity or formation called the Federal Republic of Somalia in the future.”
On the issue of the execution carried out by Somaliland:
President Silanyo further discussed with the Ambassadors of Denmark, Holland, Norway and Britain the issue of capital punishment: “It is an understandable that your government representatives have expressed concern regarding the recent executions of convicted persons carried out by the Somaliland government, and I received a number of applications requesting that the government stop the execution. However, I would like to clarify to you that the recent executions were quite consistent with our religion and the constitution of this country. Before any execution, the Somaliland government examines every case carefully so as to make sure there is no judgmental error and also to make sure that the law is being applied to avoid anything which may [question’ the legality of the execution. Finally, it makes sure that the court’s judgment/decision was fair and in accordance with the wished of the victims family, both of which are essential to strengthening peace and stability in our country.”
Somaliland Development Plan:
President Silanyo, during the meeting with the Ambassadors of Denmark, Holland, Norway and Britain, briefed them on the Somaliland Development Plan (National Development Plan), and said: “As you’re well aware…[the] Somaliland Development Plan is meant to last until 2016. At the moment, we are making plans to return our drawing table to evaluate what has been achieved, and which challenges need to be addressed. This will facilitate the setting of the Development Plan for the Republic of Somaliland in the next five years. We [have received] information/suggestions [that]…the Somaliland Development Plan integrates with that of Somalia. We see this idea as inaccurate and incorrect. The Republic of Somaliland and Somalia are two entirely different [entities]…and that every country has a good plan for development of the appropriate needs and special circumstances.”
He continued, saying: “I am very pleased to hear that you have gone to visit projects funded by your respective governments and you have seen a positive change brought by the funds contributed by your governments towards development projects. You have seen the advantages of your direct assistance to our people, I would once again thank you, and we urge you to continue to support us in promoting and funding the development in the country.”
Drought and Humanitarian Affairs:
President Silanyo, also during the meeting with the Ambassadors of Denmark, Holland, Norway and the United Kingdom Government and the DFID, said: “You’re by now aware [that] many parts of Somaliland have been hit by severe drought, resulting from the lack of rain and climate change and the lives of both men and animals are at risk. 150,000 (one hundred and fifty thousand) people need emergency assistance; the efforts of both my government and fellow citizens aren’t enough. Therefore, we ask that you help us to give humanitarian aid and assistance.