Abdiweli Gas “A HUNGRY MAN IS AN ANGRY MAN” – so said Late Reggae superstar Bob Marley
By: Yusuf M Hasan
GAROWE (Somalilandsun) – The president of the Somalia Administrative region of Puntland Abdiweli Gaas has been warned of dire consequences if the army continues to go unpaid.
The warning was issued during demonstrations by hundreds of soldiers from Puntland’s 54th Dervish battalion in Garowe where they were protesting hunger occasioned by months of salary non-payment by the administration of Abdiweli Gaas.
“How does president Gaas expect the army to continue function while its soldiers and their families are scavenging for food because of months without remunerations from the government” said Captain Dirir Jibril as disclosing that the army is determined to paralyze government operations if all back payment is not effected immediately
The members of the Garowe based 54th battalion whose demonstration saw them take over the regional capital engaged in massive protests which included burning tires and blocking civil servants from entering or leaving their offices for the better part of Saturday morning.
Saying that since president Gaas took over from Farole earlier in the year the army has nether been paid salaries nor given rations Capt Dirir who stressed on the fact that government revenue collection goes on undeterred attributed the salary army salary non-payment and ration supply to Abdiweli’s intervention in politics of a neighbouring country.
The captain was obviously referring to the escalating tensions between the Somalia regional administration and republic of Somaliland occasioned by territorial expansionism policies of Gaas who is funding clan militias in the Sool region of the neighbouring country.
Since Abdiweli Gas came to power five months ago the administration of Somaliland has been forced to establish several new military bases in the eastern regions of Sool and Sanaag and close to the border with Somalia as a deterrence towards persistent incursions by Puntland backed militias recruited from local clans and backed by the now hunger protesting Dervishes.
See more pictures of the protesting Puntland Soldiers