Continuing Political Crisis: Costs and considerations

Former Somali Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Sharmarke was a keynote speaker at HIPS Forum for Ideas on Monday 2nd of June, alongside Abdirahman Abdishakur, former Minister of International Cooperation, and Hussein Mohamud Sheikh Hassan, an MP and former deputy Prime Minister.

The topic of discussion was Somalia’s Continuing Political Crisis: Costs and Considerations. Over 60 people attended the event held at Jazeera Palace Hotel, including MPs, traditional elders, academics, and representatives of civil society and the business community.

On 5 May, more than 100 Somali MPs called on President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud to resign, accusing him of abusing his power and usurping the Council of Ministers, the highest executive authority in the country.

Sharmarke pointed out that Somalia is at a critical juncture; the Federal Government is paralyzed by the deepening political crisis, the Somali people are tired of perpetual political infighting, and the international community is growing increasingly frustrated by the endless political drama.

“There’s something fundamentally wrong with our political system,” said Sharmarke, who served as the first Prime Minister under President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed’s Transitional Federal Government. “It is about time that we revisit our Constitution and our systems.”

Many participants agreed that the seemingly relentless political infighting will further weaken the Federal Government and disorient it from its mandate as security in Mogadishu continues to deteriorate.