Somaliland: President Dhahir Rayale Kahin Visits South Africa
He aims to advance NEPAD’s strategic goals to further enhance inter-African trade and solidarity, through promoting South African-Somaliland joint investment and trade.
President Kahin’s visit to South Africa comes in the wake of President Mbeki’s January 8th ANC statement for the African National Congress, to “Strengthen the progressive movement on the African continent and work with other political parties, unions and civil society formations to contribute meaningfully to peace, democracy and development” and, for the ANC to “Participate in the global movement for development, democracy and social justice, focusing among others on countries such as Haiti and Somalia.
The visit follows South Africa’s hospitality extended towards the late Somaliland President Muhammad Ibrahim Egal, who passed away while undergoing treatment at Pretoria’s Military 1 hospital in May 2002 and, the 2003 visit of the Somaliland Foreign Minister at the invitation of the South African Foreign Minister Zuma.
The late President Egal was the last democratically elected Prime Minister of a united Somalia. President Kahin was elected President, in Somaliland’s first democratic presidential elections held in April 2003.
Somaliland received its independence from Great Britain on 26 June 1960, and after 5 days voluntarily united with Somalia. It withdrew from this union in 1991, and has since not been recognised by the international community.
In May 2001, a referendum, monitored by international observers, reinforced the sentiments of the people of Somaliland for self-determination and independence. President Kahin recent visit to South Africa is a milestone in enhancing diplomatic links since reclaiming its unrecognised independence from Somalia in 1991.
Source: Business in Africa