By: Latifa Yusuf Masai
HARGEISA (Somalilandsun) – The Somaliland presidency has intervened in the Egal Airport land dispute between the army and aviation ministry.
This was revealed by the minister of aviation and air transport Mahmud Abdi Hashi during a briefing to the parliamentary Select committee for Community Affairs at Parliament buildings in Hargeisa.
“The president Ahmed Mahmud Silanyo and his deputy Abdirahman Sayli are pursuing measures of sorting out the land dispute with the army at Egal Airport” said minister Hashi
The minister’s remarks were in reference to a difference of opinion between the armed forces and the aviation ministry as per the boundaries of land belonging to the airport and army base that erupted following attempts to erect an airport perimeter fence at Egal Airport and adjacent to armed forces property.
While terming the Armed Forces and his ministry as different organs of the same government the aviation minister said the country’s highest authorities also responsible for the two institutions shall soon give guidelines on the way forward.
Though ready to concur and implement guidelines from the presidency the aviation minister Mahmud Abdi Hashi who informed that the land intended for Fencing the side of the airport adjacent to the armed forces was squarely within Air force land, said
“While it is a fact that the Somaliland Artillery and Commandoes battalions are headquartered contiguous to the city based International it is only the Air force base that is and has for eons been within the airport compound.
While this is the first time for the aviation minister to brief a select parliamentary committee he has done so to a full session of the August house a couple of times in the past since assuming office in mid 2010.
The briefing to parliament by senior government officials and subsequent grilling by members is a stipulation enshrined in the Somaliland constitution.