Somalilandsun- Somali political system were always broken since the beginning of the first republic of Somalia. Post Colonial Administrations, the Military Regime and Post Civil War Administration that came after Independence have been using essentially the same unwritten-clan-based rules to elect presidents and prime ministers. The last election, the popular clans were leading while they were competing to form alliance where they discredit each other in order to build a dominating power. The Federal system which is approved through the current constitution adds more in the existing flames. Most of the people believe that the country is moving forward, but the power is still under few friends that formed unity based on clan interest to dominate since the institutions that should act balance and check are not in the governing vacuum.
The current presidential election is no exception since the incumbent is trying hard to come back. The previous president’s appetite to make the comeback that he dreamt as he felt being a victim of his own die-hard groups that caused him to be alienated from clans that initially supported him, which adds more irritation on the volatile situation. The accusations of corruption skyrocketed as the competition of the Somali presidential election became a revenge of the election of 2012 between Sharif Sheikh Ahmed and Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud. To make the matter more complicated, they are both hail from the same clan while they are both seeking help from their traditional and long political friends in the Northeastern or Central Somalia while they are trying to gain a good number of the parliamentarians outside their supporters.
As the principal method for selecting president in the current constitution is clear, but most of the people believe that the narrative of fairness depends on who is willing to get more MPs on their side by coming up more money to buy votes. This is the result of president Mohamoud’s rejection to have one man one vote since he claimed that the people were not ready for that kind process at this time and since it is unfair for the people in the regions that are still under the Islamists.
In most of the Somali states, the MPs are divided into clan lines while they are united clan interest and trying to win vicious bottle in order to bring home the most power ministerial positions such as minister of finance, minister foreign affairs or minister of internal affairs, which is an existing and a common practice. But that is the nostalgia of clan crime invested mentality that doomed Somalia’s political process since the competition of the most of ministerial positions means swindling the public funds.
The system fails to reflect with the wishful thinking the Diaspora members that are willing to change politically Somalia’s corrupted system. However, the lack of preferences of having an adequate process causes a lot of confusion if the opposition should join their hands in order to bring a fresh beginning. Clan political polarization aggravates to make the opposition and its supporters to politically divided more than ever. The only option they have is to speculate as they became unknowingly spectators. Instead of educating and encouraging the public, they allowed the old system to reshape itself.
Indeed, majority always rules, the reality is that clan appealing is not vital for any democratic process that is expected to produce the much needed system that brings with the change that the Somali need after 25 years of civil unrest (Civil War). On the other hand, one might wonder why clan is important than anything else in the Somali social and cultural aspect since they are, to a certain degree, a homogeneous society. This will be an unending social issues that the Somali community has been and will be dealing in the future. Probably, it is out of the question to find an immediate solution, however, having the discussion of ELIMINATING tribalism is more needed than before.
In order to happen it, it may need Somalis to proactively involve the discussion of separation of clan and the government system.
Written by Mohamed Barre – [Julay] – an independent writer who lives in Minneapolis, MN at Junlay99@aol.com