Somaliland; City Father Disowns Presidential Edict

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“Our cessation of all development activities at the Hisbiga site is due to the respect we at the municipality hold for the country’s presidency and not because of the late night order” Mayor JiirHisbiga demolition standoff-President protecting public property while mayor says evictions to facilitate SMEs relocation

By: Yumoha Pasha

HARGEISA (Somalilandsun) – The Hargeisa municipality has ceased all development activities at the Hisbiga building as per orders of the president.

According to The mayor of the Hargeisa Municipality Eng. Hussein Mahmoud Jiir, development activities at the sprawling Hisbiga building and environs have ceased as a respect to President Silanyo and not his irregularly issued orders.

Eng. Jiir revealed this to the Hornnewspaper and Geeska sister newspaper during an exclusive interview in his Hargeisa offices where he termed the recent president Silanyo Edict banning any activities by the municipality at the Hisbiga building as irregular and a direct affront to good governance.

The city leader was referring to a presidential decree, which order the city municipality to distance itself, and its activities from the Radio Hargeisa based Hisbiga building and adjacent as it is the property of the central government with plans at an advanced stage to revert the building to a public provision facility.

In his decree president Silanyo informed that his administration inherited the Hisbiga building development plans from his predecessor Hon Dahir Rayale Kahin, quoted a similar edict from the ex-president # JSL/M/MHH/241/0506 ee 06/05/06 issued by the former administration in 2006 which seems to have been totally ignored.

The president Silanyo Edict that also ordered the interior minister to ensure that the order is realized in full resulted from deadly confrontations between Small market entrepreneurs-SMEs and police acting on the municipality orders of evicting them from the Hisbiga building where they reportedly occupied 15 years ago.

Mayor Jiir said the he was very surprised when he woke up on the morning of 5 Oct to read about the presidential edict that was then public information released at the odd hours of past 8pm when most sane and busy people are at home enjoying quality time with family after a strenuous day in public service.

While revealing that the purpose of the evictions pertained to availing alternate business locations to some SMEs evicted from the centre of the town earlier this year, Eng. said Rumours to the effect that the building was fraudulently sold to a local tycoon were baseless.

Said he, “the municipal council had agreed to offer 4X4m spaces at the Hisbiga building to 230 financial able former city center SMEs for constructions of self-financed kiosks while the municipality was to construct free of charge hangars also of size 4X4m to 300 financially unable youthful SMEs who were similarly evicted from the city centre.

The Mayor who during the entire interview repeatedly referred to the presidential edict as unprocedural informed that he intends to pursue the matter with the head of state in order to set the record straight on the plight of the evicted SMEs who were supposed to be relocated to Gobanimo (Hisbiga) and Inji Markets.

While urging presidency operatives to desist from misguiding the president Eng. Jiir said, “Our cessation of all development activities at the Hisbiga site is due to the respect we at the municipality hold for the country’s presidency and not because of the late night order”

Adding that the president had a right to sympathies and care for citizens, the city mayor wondered why the presidency was not kept constantly informed by the interior ministry that is in-charge of local governments in the country.

According to the mayor the interior ministry was aware that the current and illegal occupants of the Hisbiga building and adjacent areas, had been resettled in Sheikh Omar Estate together with formerly residing at the building used as the residence of the British governor prior to independence.

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