“Though discriminated for ages we are Worthy of National Leadership Positions” Sultan Nassir Abdi
By: Latifa Yusuf Masai
HARGEISA (Somalilandsun) – Members of the minority clans in Somaliland have agreed to actively participate in the ongoing persons and voters registration exercise.
This was revealed by Sultan Nassir Abdi Ismail during a minority clan sensitization workshop dubbed Promoting the Civic and Political Participation of Minority Communities in Somaliland hosted at the Summertime Hotel in Hargeisa by Voice of Somaliland Minority Women Organization- VOSOMWO LNGO under sponsorship from the National Endowment for Democracy –NED
Sultan Nassir who is the main traditional leader of the Minority Clans in Somaliland said that the complete participation of his kinsmen in the registration exercise was a prelude to securing leadership positions in the country, that have consciously been the sole preserve of majority clans.
“While we shall register for both the Citizens Identification and Voters Cards en-masse we fully expect reciprocation from relevant authorities in ensuring that minority clans are represented at levels of leadership and decision making in the country” Said Sultan Nassir at the function that drew attendance from a wide spectrum of society including the government, political parties, legislators, National Election Commission and public as well.
Dignitaries present and concurring on the imperatives of full integration of the minority clans in Somaliland included the UCID party presidential hopeful Jamal Ali Hussein, Chairman of the National Election commission –NEC Mohamed Ahmed Hirsi Gelle, the deputy minister for Social services Shukri Ismail and legislator
In Conclusion Sultan Nassir who informed that the minority clans fought hand in hand with the other major clans for the country’s liberation during the civil war of the eighties and early 90’s leading to the withdrawal of Somaliland from Union with Somalia said it was absurd to continue denying his people access to leadership positions.
According to the Executive director of VOSOMWO Abdisamad Omar Sh Abdirahman the purpose of the one day workshop was a continuation of his organizations campaign in promoting the political participation of minorities through a legally secured quota system and improving equal access to education and employment for minority clan youths.
The UCID presidential candidate Jamal Ali who said the Kulmiye party has failed the minority clans that were in the fore front of support during the 2010 presidential elections urged the ruling party to refer to its campaign pledges book in order to see what lies truths were told citizens in the clamor for occupying the presidency and what has been delivered since then
“We hope that the minority clans will secure their rightful place in the decision making at all levels soon” said Jamal
while informing that the announcement of full participation in the registration exercise was vital national activity the outgoing chairman of the National Elections Commission Mohamed Ahmed Hirsi Gelle said the issuance of the two cards shall jumpstart the presidential and parliamentary elections slated for mid 2015 and the minority clans shall be in a better position to lobby for access to political process participation
Thanking VOSOMWO for organizing the minority clan’s sensitization workshop and NED for funding the deputy minister for social services Shukri Ismail applauded the minority clans for their acknowledgment of the importance of registering as a citizen and a voter.
“The ID card puts the country’s citizens at par with those from other countries while the voter one makes a person eligible to elect leaders of choice” said the a close.
In all the country’s local councils, the house of parliament and council of ministers in Somaliland the minority clans who are considered as outcasts are not represented.
Watch a short Somali language clip of the VOSOMWO workshop on “Promoting the Civic and Political Participation of Minority Communities in Somaliland