Somalilandsun – Since early June the Contract manage and develop the Berbera port awarded to Dubai ports World has been the main talk among various stakeholders in Somaliland.
Upon signature between the governments of Somaliland and the United Arab Emirates in which DP World earned a 30v years mandate at the country’s main port in which over $400m shall be expended, the magnitude of the agreement has gripped the nation.
In response the Somaliland national TV-Slntv hosted a debate on the merits and demerits of the agreement that poled its studio panel from academics in various fields as well as students from various universities in the Country.
Among the panellists were
1. Lawyer Mahmud Hussein Farah who is Dean of the University of Hargeisa college of law
2. Lawyer Abdurrahman Yusuf Gahnuug, Lecturer at the University of Hargeisa college of law
3. Lawyer Abdurrahman Isse Farah Lecturer at the University of Hargeisa college of law and
4. Lawyer Farah Hasan of the legal firm of Somlegal among other university dons
Following lengthily exchanges encompassing the legalities, economic, diplomatic and viability of the contract to manage and develop the port of Berbera by DP World students from the universities of Alpha ,Admas ,Golis and New generation as well as a number of their dons took the floor to question the panellists and request elaboration on their take of the contract.
Concisely the outcome of the Debate was a demystification of the much talked about multimillion dollar contract in which the panellists gave their take most important being that
1. The government not only that of Somaliland and elsewhere in the world has the mandate given by citizens to manage state affairs on their behalf.
2. Petty clan based politics should not be allowed to interfere with National development that is geared towards benefitting all citizens.
3. The body mandated by the constitution to query or request relevant substantiation from the government on any issue is the legislature- parliament whose membership is composed of citizens elected representatives.
4. Having the government manage to secure foreign investment of any kind was a major diplomatic achievement in lieu of the fact that Somaliland remains unrecognized internationally as sovereign nation.
5. The need for citizens to understand that contracts signed by the government are not for the sole preserve of sitting president but for all the country and when current administration leaves office the incoming one is obligated to continue where left
While the hour long debate ensued with most questions nagging the citizenry being touched upon either by the panellists or subsequent questions by participating university students all were in agreement that the DP World arrangement had only merits if the example of how the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the UAE have harnessed resources and become world eating economic powers less than 3 decades when they were poor desert tribal administrations.
Similarly it was unanimously agreed that Somaliland shall not only benefit from new structures or rehabilitation of existing ones at the port but acquisition of much need personnel management and creation of hundreds if not thousands of much needed jobs.
The panellists and participating students unanimously urged Somaliland citizens to have confidence in their elected president and members of parliament of whom office occupation is as a result of their votes cast in free and faith elections both at the national and local levels.
Finally the administration of president Ahmed Mahmud Silanyo was commended for the very discernible efforts it has put forth in pursuit of improving citizens livelihoods while asked to be a little more forthcoming with basic facts on arrangements of magnitude like that of international investment for the Berbera port thus negate unnecessary discussions with its constituents while tribal leaders and like minded supporters were apportioned main blame for raising irrelevant debate