Somali elders strike deal on how to rule liberated areas
Somalia elders from lower and middle Juba and Gedo region have resolved to establish an interim regional federal authority to administer the region liberated from al Shabaab by Kenya Defence Forces. The elders from Ras Kamboni, Ahlu-Sunna Wal Jamaa, Harti, Azaania and officials from the Transitional Federal Government who have been meeting at the KCB Ledership Centre in Karen in Nairobi yesterday evening signed a document for the establishment of the regional authority.
The three-day meeting, which was attended by Kenyan and Ethiopian government officials, was held under tight security. The process will be conducted within the Inter Governmental Authority on Development and Transitional Federal Government framework on grand stabilisation plan. The regional authority will be established before the end of Somalia’s TFG mandate in August and is expected to peacefully co-exist with its neighbours in Somalia and neigbouring countries including Kenya and Ethiopia.
The elders agreed to establish a regional authority comprising Lower Juba, Middle Juba and Gedo in line with the national federal constitution which is yet to be adopted. The authorities representation, which will be based on districts and regions, will comprise the executive, legislature and judiciary. It will have unified security arrangements to fill the vacuum left by al Shabaab.
According to IGAD officials who attended the meeting the process of establishing the interim regional authority will be guided by consultative,inclusive and be broad based negotiations and guided by democracy, respect for minority rights and in consistent with the tenets of Islam and Sharia law.
The delegates including TFG minister of State Interior and National Security DrAbdi Ali Hassan, Azaania representative Abdiaziz Osman Mohamed, Sheikh Aidarus Siid Warsame of Ahlu-Sunna Wal Jamaa and representatives from Ras Kamboni and Harti group backed the process.
The leaders agreed to resolve their differences and cease hostilities as they intensify the fight against al Shabaab.They also agreed to establish a technical committee representative and nominate to plan and guide the process. The team will engage stakeholders, work on a draft agenda, agree on the structure and promote rehabilitation, reconstruction and recovery of the region. The technical team, which will next meet on July 9, urged the international community including the United Nations, African Union and IGAD to support the process.