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Is President Sheikh Sharif Competent Enough to Lead War-Torn Somalia?
By Mohamed Tifoow
April 27 , 2012

As a young Somali university student still struggling to make it in life, I know how this article could be misinterpreted by those with low mental caliber to label me as an uncouth young man. I’m however not bothered because somebody has to ask some of these tough questions. If you are one of those that would prefer to be led by an incompetent, corrupt and incapable individual, I suggest you don’t read this. Unfortunately, these bunch of blind supporters have resorted to tribal and religious insinuations that are further used to dumb down the citizen of this great nation and deny us our ability to think through the decisions we make in our everyday lives. That said, if you are sailing on the same boat like me and would prefer genuine and competent leadership then maybe you should read on and come up with the other questions.

Although he is blessed with an empty CV, I was one of those who had been fooled at the beginning by the religious and community credentials of President Sheikh Sharif.  I as well as many Somalis had so much hope for our country especially as we were beginning to emerge from nearly two decades of civil war. Now, it took all but a little while for the true President Sheikh Sharif to finally stand up. He has proven himself to be not only severely incompetent and corrupt but also unintelligently scary. It is this fear that is driving me to write this article as I am beginning to fear for the peace and stability of my country that I love so dearly.  Most of my fear and concern come from the fact that there are still a few people in Somalia that are still willing to sing the praise of President Sharif despite his failure in leadership and lack of strategic thinking.

In our current plight and quagmire, competent and skillful leadership has become indispensable. Leadership that is able to manage the present and look into the future and fashion out visions and policies to be able to deal with the challenges that would confront us is nonnegotiable. Our leadership can no longer be one that specializes in corruption and fault finding. We can no longer continue to be led by a leadership that is bankrupt of ideas and visions, blaming others for our failure to lead our people and offer them hope. As you are all aware, Somalia is currently on a cross road as we move on from the transitional phase to join back the community of nations, taking back our rightful place.  But we can’t even start thinking of dealing with the impact of these processes when we have a corrupt President in power with no aptitude other than milking the coffers of the world poorest country. What an appetite!

A few of our God fearing President ways of running our country over the years made me reach the conclusion that if we as a nation are to survive, we would have to start by removing the President from Villa Somalia and bring in people that are ready to deal with the challenges of nation rebuilding otherwise we are all sitting on a ticking bomb. Before you run off to defend the President and say he did not steal from the poor people of Somalia, here are just a few acts of malpractices, corruption and nepotism of our God fearing President to mention but few, for your kind perusal:

In his quest for power and abuse of protocols, our God fearing President has imposed his direct control and access on the Ministries of Finance, the Justice, the Water, Minerals & Energy, and the Internal Affairs and Security. My question is, why on earth should a President be poking his nose into the affairs of these Ministries by-passing all known protocols?  I guess the answer is simple as these Ministries are ‘’wet’’ Departments to be milked by his Excellency our God fearing President.  And I almost forget the Directors of the Port and Airport Agencies directly report to him. Your Excellency do you really know your terms of reference as the head of the State?

We also know that the Our God fearing President has personally appointed the Commissioner of the Police and the Director of the National Security Agency (NSA) and runs both Departments directly from Villa Somalia. It is worth stating here that the current Director NSA is an ex-Al Shabaab fighter related to the President, and is a known sympathizer of Alshabaab ideology having received direct indoctrination and mentoring from the same school of thought attended by our God fearing President. It is also an open fact that the Director recently  released under direct order of our God fearing President more than70 so-called Alshabaab defectors on recognition of working with them during the Islamic Court era. In a classic case of ‘’sick medicine’’, these terrorists were armed to the teeth and ordered to play part of mopping out ‘’terrorists’’ from Mogadishu. This must be the joke of the century. No wonder the security situation in Mogadishu has severely deteriorated eversince. Besides, it is the first time in the history of the prestigious Somali NSA to have an ex-terrorist with no formal professional education appointed as the Director.

Mr President, why is it that people from your own micro sub-clan are in charge of running and coordinating all aid and charities work and money in Somalia. Are you telling us they are the most competent of all Somalis or there is something fishy going on? Can you please tell us who are the Somali partners in the millions worth Turkish Somali Company that was recently established in Mogadishu and Ankara? For God sake what the ‘’Sharif’’ is going on?

Can our God fearing President justify the reason why he has been directly appointing people from his own micro sub-clan to many important ambassadorial posts and other important diplomatic positions across the world?

Can our God fearing President and his bunch of hangers-on (Aala Sheikh) explain to the public their numerous unnecessary travels with chartered flights costing millions of dollars when the Somali child lacks the basic needs?

Mr President, can you please explain why there is constant nightly mortar fire attack and artillery shelling of villa Somali and its surroundings whenever you and your bunch of hangers-on leave the country on your chartered planes? Is this your preferred method of targeted killing?
Mr President, can you explain to the public why did you changed your mind at the last minute when you were scheduled to open the event at the National Theatre on that fateful day when the female suicide bomber struck? Is this not the ultimate betrayal in the city?

Mr President, can you justify the criterion of selection for the 12 army officers from your own sub-clan and supporters including former members of Alshabaab that you recently promoted to Generals?  What have you done for our brave soldiers who serve in the most difficult and harsh conditions, face to face with the enemy on the frontline?

Mr President, as rumours have it, is it true that you and your bunch of hangers-on are preparing to set the house on fire if you lose the presidency in august, 2012? Already justified indicators to this end are openly displayed by your blind supporters. This is indeed an unwarranted prescription for conflict.

To sum up, one would expect that with all these systematic failure of leadership, corruption and the misery that Somalis are going through, the one thing our God fearing President would offer us is to step down and make way for honest people that are ready to deal with the challenges of nation rebuilding. Mr President, you have betrayed the Somali nation and miserably failed in your leadership. You need to go now. Just pack and leave us alone!

Mohamed Tifoow


The author is a student at Brunel University in West London.


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