By M.M. Afrah©
"Freedom without civility,
freedom without the ability to live in peace, was not freedom
Mandela knew what he was talking about. In Somalia, it
is time for honesty and the ability to live in peace.
Recently a cabinet minister of the homeless federal government
told Yemeni journalists that Somalia would stand on its
own feet again, "very soon" politically and
economically. Fancy words but as empty as overturned Haan
of water on the sandy beaches of Lido and Jasiira! When
one considers that the promised funding from weary donor
countries, many of whom have their own hidden agendas
that is a reasonable expectation, because a minor misinterpretation
or misunderstanding could instantly cut off the aid. Nabad-gelyo!
handouts from donor countries are temporary band-aid and
the recipient countries must relay on themselves-hence,
the need to exploit our own natural resources for the
good of the country and people. One of the top priorities
is to rebuild the country from ground zero. For a starter,
all the destroyed government infrastructures, including
Villa Somalia, the Presidential Palace, should be rebuilt
and renovated for the new federal government to move in.
Young Hussein M.F. Aideed, please take note.
is and was always synonymous with the cap in hand, or
what the Western media describe as a "basket case",
and it would continue non-stop unless people exploit our
natural resources, and that anyone who calls himself President
or Prime Minister would be running a penniless government
till doomsday. The Simple question is: "who is responsible
for the never-ending chaos and the drowning in obtuseness?
Pause for a moment and wonder why the warlords and the
petty politicians always agree to disagree on trivialities.
"It is the economy, stupid," as the Americans
used to say during the depression of the 1920s.
conventional wisdom tells us if the president of a country
is running around for fear of what was dubbed as "Crossing
the Mogadishu Line," that country is doomed to go
belly up again. A signor United Nations Protection Force
(UNPROFOR) official coined that phrase after the so-called
all due respect, I, as a senior citizen, urge the President
to face the people he was supposed to lead as the President
of the new Federal Republic after more than a decade of
mayhem and chaos. Mistrust, unfounded rumors, mainly emanating
from the local grapevines (Fadhi ku dirir), suspicion
and clan worshipping lie at the root of Somalia's failure
to return to the community of nations since 1991.
Abdullahi Yusuf deserves to give the Somali soldier a
good name. Where is the Somali soldier's gallantry with
which he faced Mengistu's horde and the massive Soviet
and Cuban killing machines in 1977 at Jigjiga, Karamardha,
Godey and Shilaabo with only a short gun?
of armed militia from Puntland in Jowhar or anywhere else
in the South will only trigger off a renewed civil war
and more bloodshed never seen before.
shoes were made for walking, over to you, Colonel.
NOT EVERYBODY CAN GO BACK HOME
carefully for a moment. This is not a country without
natural resources, but needs a talented Somalis, especially
those returning from abroad with their expertise, magnetism
and charisma to exploit the riches of our country, but
the main ingredient is peace and stability without which
no progress can be achieved. Admittedly, some returning
Somalis have made inroads in the fields of trade, light
industries and communications under dangerous circumstances,
but what the country badly needs are people who are versed
in exploiting the dormant mineral resources in the country.
As for foreign investments, they should accost investors
and developers, for example, from the People's Republic
of China, Japan and Malaysia.
course, not everyone can go back home, notably those clowns
who perpetually tortured people suspected of anti-revolutionaries
at the notorious Godka torture chambers and members of
the kangaroo courts as well as the crack Red Berets and
the dreaded NSS, not to mention Hangash, the military
question that still bugs me is whether there was any effort
made by the Mogadishu wing to integrate their effort into
coherent reconciliation strategy between the two opposing
sides or whether they were merely ad hoc and uncoordinated
initiatives. The 100 parliamentarians and cabinet ministers
led by the Speaker of the Parliament describe their effort
as constructive and in line with the original plan.
they brought into play a robust challenge by going to
the capital listening to people. That's where you see
how people live their lives, what their problems and challenges
are, and you can get a direct answer from them as how
they think some of these problems can be solved. The main
object was to provide safe environment for the new federal
government to function, and to restore law and order.
After all, it was some of these faction leaders, now cabinet
ministers and MPs, who armed the militia in the first
place, put the string of illegal road barricades, and
caused devastation in the once beautiful country.
Hashi, the spokesman of the Mogadishu group, said the
President and his Prime Minister lacked adequate understanding
of the operation to clear Mogadishu of the militia gunmen,
and hence worked against it rather than joining them,
and are merely concerned with their own personal safety.
one has the right to ask why the Mogadishu group were
too slow to dismantle the most violent roadblocks in the
heart of the city who still exhort money openly from the
people at the barrel of the gun-under the very nose of
the inhabitants continue to struggle to lead a semblance
of normal life in impossible circumstances. The human
touch by the brave women of Mogadishu and the civic societies
should not be relegated to the gutter.
worst thing for a politician to do is to use people when
they need them then all of a sudden disappears until they
need them again.
SOMALIA'S MASSIVE OIL DEPOSIT
back to Somalia's natural resources. A 1984 report by
an American oil exploration company in Mogadishu says
that Somalia, with its longest coast in Africa South of
the Sahara is sitting on a massive offshore oil deposit.
Now, all our own prospective oil explores and engineers
require is the use of the latest technology in development
of proven oil fields. In addition, they would need several
rounds of negotiations with various technology providers
across the world. As the 1984 American exploration company
located the enormous offshore deposit, the focus should
be on offshore technology. At the same times our vast
marine life must be protected from foreign crooks, by
using force, if necessary-let the foreign media cook their
own nasty headlines! The people will eventually prevail.
M. M. Afrah©