Somalilandsun – A member of the Republic of Somaliland’s House of Representatives embarked on yet another antidevelopment trail by casting unfounded aspersions on Islamic banks, in general, and those of Dahabshiil and Salaama operating in the Republic of Somaliland, Puntland and Somalia.
The MP, holding a press conference at the parliament house in Hargeisa on Wednesday last, spouted a stream of venomous allegations against the banks using the Parliament emblem as a backdrop although he did not represent the views of the august house by a long shot.
Talking to a group of young media practitioners, who later spiked the man’s 15-minute long monologue, appeared as a commissioned mouthpiece who did not really understand or properly learn by rote what he was supposed to say, tripping himself over and over on a few words he repeated again and again.
“They charge 13% on investment ventures these two banks lend to applicants,” he said.
The man did not check his records. Dahabshiil never did. He should have noted the investment angle and the contribution made to the society instead.
Dahabshiil Bank International and its sister banks in Djibouti, Bossasso and Mogadishu employ hundreds and hundreds of young professionals, thus supporting thousands of dependents whose worries on living expenses, educational fees, health bills and many more are laid to rest because of the employment generated and filled – honestly, industriously.
Besides, the banks offered investments on attractive profit margins that were welcomed by applicants creating thousands and thousands more of jobs, boosting economies and reviving the morale of small and big businesses alike. The investment and Microfinance departments of DBI have all the records for all to see.
He did not only attack the two local banks but he lied about the functions of the Somaliland Central Bank, too.
The errant MP accused the Central Bank of delegating its duties to the private banks – specifically and pointedly targeting DBI. Wrong again. The Central has never done that bank. It may not be very robust but it had at no time turned its back to the Dollar- or the local currency.
One wonders if the MP was not, in fact, dreaming on his feet.
The MP admitted he knew very little of his faith – Islam – and yet he accused religious clerics of ‘misinterpreting’ the faith. How did he come to know that?
The disrespectful MP insults Islam and people’s intellect on every turn.
In fact, putting the fiqi in Islam aside, he should have at the least been conversant of the Constitution of the Republic of Somaliland that protects him, feeds him and under whose generosity he attacks private businesses in broad daylight without due cause.
Article 5 of the Somaliland Constitution, paragraph/section 1 and 2 clearly stipulate:
1. Islam is the religion of the Somaliland state, and the promotion of any religion in the territory of Somaliland, other than Islam, is prohibited.
2. The laws of the nation shall be grounded on and shall not be contrary to Islamic Sharia.
In light of above, the MP must produce proof to support his allegations regarding:
1. Where and when the banks intervened in parliamentary affairs
2. Substantive proof that Dahabshiil levied 13% on investment transactions
3. Where, when and how the banks manipulated government policy
4. When and where the state abandoned its constitution
5. Which banks he is fronting for that would levy only charge 3% in a capitalist, non-Islamic world
6. Where and when there was a monopoly on the banking market in Somaliland especially when BCI (French) and CAC (Yemen) were conspicuously represented in Hargeisa offices
If the MP cannot produce infallible proof, he must be prepared to face the consequences of the lies he makes a habit of, a second skin.
Amply documented on the Internet are his biased past stands on peace, stability and development.
The man is not only a fool but a shameful ignoramus that everyone can see without the least effort. He is neither competent nor learned enough to so ignorantly discourse on issues of national importance.
His only qualification is tribally-bent drivel. At all counts. On all instances.
How dare he say he was promoting economic development when he so vehemently, so myopically opposed Berbera Port extension, the Cement Factory, the extension to the oil tanks, etc, etc.
Finally, the Parliament must distance itself from any association with or attribution to such vile and ignorant outbursts that put it on an equally compromising position in the eyes of the nation and the international community.