Somaliland: VP Sayli’s Address to British House of Commons

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By;Yunis M.Jama

THE SPEECH OF THE VICE PRESIDENT OF SOMALILAND TO THE ALL PARTY MPS FOR SOMALILAND AND SOMALIA.

Somalilandsun – HonourableSaylici2 MPs, Friends of Somaliland, Ladies and gentlemen, we are delighted to be received in this landmark of democracy, the mother of all parliaments, this House of Commons.

These days my country celebrates 22th Anniversary of its second republic, established after a hard and costly struggle in which thousands lost their lives, whole towns destroyed by the tyranny of military dictatorship.

My Somaliland received its independence after nearly a century under British protectorate, on 26th June 1960. With the spirit of freedom and solidarity, we united with the other part of Somali territory that gained its independence after 4 days, The Somali Italia, anticipating the union of all five Somali territories.

The unfair treatment of our people in Ex British Protectorate destroyed the hope and ambition of all Somalis to be under one country the so called Greater Somalia.

After a decade of veracious war against the people of Somaliland by then the third strongest military in Africa, we succeeded to free our land from one of the cruellest of dictatorships and establish Somaliland a democratic and peace loving nation.

Without external help, we succeeded to rebuild our destroyed nation physically, institutionally and spiritually. We established a multi-party democracy where rule of the law is the norm. WE undertook five free and democratic elections: two Presidential elections, one parliamentary and two local government elections.

All these elections where concluded fairly and in peace as witnessed by international independent election monitoring teams, including team from UK and European Union. In the last presidential election held in 2010, we witnessed the first peaceful change of leadership in the entire Horn of Africa. We, my party KULMIYE then an opposition won the election, giving me and our President the chance to rule our beloved nation for five years.

Our government appreciates British role in reconciliation effort to make Somalia a functioning and peaceful country. However, it must be clear to all that Somaliland is not Somalia; it is entirely a different state. That is why we have to negotiate as two independent states seeking a mutual relationship of brotherhood and friendship. In that spirit we attended February 2012 All Somali conference here in London under the sponsorship of British Government. We were not part of reconciliation for Somalia, but as stated in point six of the conference agreement, we attended in equal footing with Somalia. Two governments negotiating for better relationship. We thank Britain for that.

We are thankful to U.K for its direct help in security and economic development. We look forward for more and perpetual relationship to the benefit of our citizens. We share hundreds of thousands of citizens that have both nationalities. They play a major role in rebuilding Somaliland. They are the bridge that links our two countries.

Honourable MPs and fellow friends of Somaliland, despite our entire successful endeavour to establish a functioning peaceful democracy in a region where both peace and democracy is rarely heard, we are not recognized by the international community.

With our historic link between our nations, we ask United Kingdom to help us achieve the inalienable right this nation deserves: to join international community as sovereign and independent nation. We satisfied all conditions necessary for a functioning and democratic country. Our nation is instituted with the free will of its people, without any external influence. That will is the ultimate that shapes our future as an independent and sovereign state.

I ask your honourable MPs to spearhead for a mutual and strong relationship between our countries. We ask UK to be at the front of all nations in supporting us to gain the long waited recognition of the international community.

Thank you for giving me this opportunity to share with you the aspiration of our people.

The Vice President of Somaliland

HE. Abdirahman Abdilahi Sayli

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