Scratch My Back, Too

Columbus (Keydmedia) - Sharif Sheikh Ahmed is lobbying to win a five presidential term after the current one is over next August 2011. It could prove a hard sale in a grey political scene in Somalia, but is a doable hurdle, especially when an ambitious politician is sitting on containers of USD cash money to buy his position. What are the political chips that Sherif Ahmed is basing on his political comeback theory?
Article Keydmedia Online
Scratch My Back, Too

Well, since the word corruption is not an aberration in the political reality in Somalia, whoever has more cash dollars stashed in his bedroom can buy a political capital with the people’s funds. So the open season of political horse trading has begun in Garowe in the most infamous way.

Who are the political brokers?

Abdiweli M. Ali Gas is one of them, and he is proud of doing the middleman. He is down to earth clan centered prime minister in the Somali history, and has been put there to serve the ambition of President Sherif and care the concerns of Puntland interest, where his loyalty lies.

Call it a calculated political equation of bridging clan-based political hegemony of its merit. Step one is a two way clear cut deal- Abdiweli has to bag in Farole support and bring him into the fold of Sherif Ahmed club. The math is so simple. Buy political favors and nail down an unprecedented political alliance.

As a trusted middleman, Abdiweli flew to Garowe on 27 August 2011 to buy Farole and handed over 2 million USD in cash, which was part of the negotiated deal. A day later on 28 August, President Sherif landed on Garowe Airport and paid off 3 million UDS in cash, which was the balance of the hush money to line up Punt land’s support.

Dr. Mahiga was there, a favorite witness, grinning from check to check and blessing the deal and butting the backs of domineering stakeholders.

Everyone was happy of the brisk political business transaction: Within minutes, Sherif Ahmed had the political support of Farole under his belt. Farole has earned hefty cash bags in his bedroom; and Abdiweli will have reconfirmed position in the new government to be formed after August 2012.

As a loyal clan patriarch, Mr. Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed was the happiest man of the outcome of the deal because he generated an easy cash so much needed for Puntland coffins- his ancestral land and political base, as well as carving a successfully extension of Abdiweli political clout as the next prime minster of the future government.

However, Galmudug is not happy of the deal because it did not get the attention and the respective slice of the cake. At the end, however, an evenhanded solicitation is the only way out that could propel Sherif Ahmed for a five year term, but he did not even asked Galmudug his political quest for his ambition, and Abdiweli ignored to have anything to do with his traditional clan foe.

However, Galmudug may cash in double of the political tribute Sherif Ahmed paid to Puntland, as well, but all depends how skillfully it carves its slice. Galmudug has the right to ask 5 million USD in cash, as well as an addendum sum of moral infraction tribute to a wronged political partner.

The question is who makes the necessary move? Alin who has been marginalized by Mahiga…? Abdiweli who harbors traditional enmity of Galmudug entity? President Sherif who see Galmudug as an easy sale…?

Unlike Puntland, currently Galmudug is in a strong political position to reckon with: It has tripled its political boundaries by including most of the clan denominations in the Central Regions of Somalia. There is also relative peace and stability in the land.

However, Galmudug is not a rubber stamp to be taken for granted, and both Dr. Mahiga and President Sherif may find it a broad-based giant to reckon with at head-counting political arena. As an equal political partner, Galmudug has to hold a foot in the horse-trading political arena in Somalia, and time is ticking.

Salma Abdikarim Ayuub – Columbus, Ohio - Keydmedia correspondent -

Article 21 May 2021 10:14

I read your article on Foreign Policy with keen eyes and interest. While whining from public officials does not deserve response from any sensible citizen of the Republic of Somalia, I felt compelled to counter false narrative with more objective analysis.