Under the terms of the newly established Somali constitution, any Somali citizen over the age of 40 years shall have the right to be elected to the highest public office and to a vote. Due to the creation of these general principles within the constitution, the rights of the Somali individual, granted with fundamental freedoms and with the duties of every citizen permits anyone to stand and run for the highest held position in the land, the Presidency.
Most of us citizens have a number of expectations from presidential candidates which could be considered informal requirements. To be a highly visual Somali presidential candidate, one must possess the characteristics of what we call a true leader. My focal point of this article is “Why Mr. Farmajo needs to run for the Presidency in 2012.”
Unlike many of our past Somali PM’s and Presidents, Mr. Farmajo maintains the devotion of many followers which in return, helps him to increase his current political base. During his appointed post as the Prime Minister of Somalia, he was unknown to political elites and circles but new comer raise quickly as political star. Mr. Farmajo had earned the trust of his people by demonstrating his ability to lead with honesty, morals and with sound judgment. Given the current circumstances of our nation, Mr. Farmajo was to govern a wounded nation with 20 plus years of civil war, deeply divided and with many powerful enemies from within and without. In the beginning of his first term, Mr. Farmajo focused onto stepping up the needs of the security forces, securing their monthly salaries, funding the Somali Defense Army and equipping their depots. He had enforced the policy of “Daryeel Military”, a designated police and security agency with commanders who are to report directly to the Prime Minister and to the President. Mr. Farmajo had also helped to secure the basic incomes of the Somali civil servents, traditional folk music artists, known as, “Hobolada Waaberi” and assured the proper care of the Somali Veterans, the wounded and the disabled government staff and soldiers. He had started a propaganda campaign against the Al-shabab group using radio Mogadishu and TV and the internet as a means to transmit messages directly and indirectly. He had many face to face meetings with many diverse groups such as; the Somali Civil Society, women, minority groups, tribal and elder leaders, the Somali Diaspora and many other Somali activists. Farmaajo laid out a plan to work with our neighboring countries consisting of mainly, IGAD nations, and had helped to negotiate to minimize their political influences and agendas inside Somalia.
When Mr. Farmajo selected his Ministerial Cabinets from a very experienced intellectuals and technocrats, his first office implementation was to set up standard for the future of Somali Executive Managers, which in the past were positions held by the warlords, uneducated thugs and opportunist. Mr. Farmajo has proven to be a confident leader by standing side by side and reaching out to the Somali Diaspora, the well educated elites with Masters and PhD Degrees. He had surrounded himself with strong men and women who were able to present their opinions despite their differences with the Prime Minister. On one case to mention is when the Prime Minister traveled to our neighboring nations, Kenya and Ethiopia, for the first time at the end of the year of 2010. This visit was the Prime Minister’s first and only visit to Ethiopia in order to take part of the Federalism Conference in Addis-Ababa with Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Finance. During the Conference, the members of delegations from the neighboring Countries asked the Prime Minister what he, the Prime Minister, needs and wants from the neighboring Countries to contribute to the stability of Somalia. The Prime Minister’s answer was and quote, “If someone’s house is on fire, first it’s the responsibility of the owner of the house to distinguish the fire and then seek the support of his neighbors if and when more urgent need arises.” Mr. Farmajo requested their minimal involvement with the internal affairs of Somalia and to help and allow Somalia, itself, to find its own solution to its problems. Mr. Farmajo did what many of us did not expect from a Somali politician to do and to find answers to our national solution in the simplest way.
An effective leader observes his behaviours and that of others. Mr. Farmajo is known to be a “calm observer” with an ability to solve problems at ease. Truly, Mr. Farmajo is a humble person who leads to serve his own people. Some of Mr. Farmajo’s close friends identify him as someone who knows how to remain calm and steady at times of extreme crisis and not intrigued by the rough waters ahead. During his time in Mogadishu, Somalia, the Prime Minister’s residence inside the government palace, Villa Somalia, bullets from the oppositional forces continued to fly across the corridors. Instead of retaliating with mortars and shelling the public as many leaders had done in the past, the Prime Minister reminded everyone around him to not panic and to remain calm as he had prepared for this and an adversity like this one is just another way to test those who are willing to make a change and lead their nation out of misery.
Honest and integrity values are cornerstone ones character and essential to any leader. Farmer Prime Minister Farmaajo who is son of SYL Activist parents accumulated solid ground of honesty early of his age. While his dad was civil servant of Somali department of transportation early 70s he enrolled his son to boarding school (college) he become friends of many Orfanos and become peoples person, some of them where with government with him, like late abdishakur sheick, Minister of security, farmer commander of police force who pays ultimate price after he was assisinated in Mogadishu , General Ali Hassan Loyan, and current Mayor of Mogadishu and die hard Community activist Mohamed Nor Tarzan. Late 2010 when many advisors suggested that president is becoming liability to his political success both to international community and Somalis alike. He decided to stick with him until his end. He believes any PM can’t work if there is no full confidence of president and he served with his pleasure. When he saw people who mixed personal gain power public and private life interest he moved quickly and cleared the way and remove it without hesitation. Many occasions he told to Somalis tribalism and nationhood can’t be mixed and if what destroys Somalia was division of tribal chauvinism then we can’t build nation based tribes hatred and divisions between us. We need to move beyond Box of small Pie enclave move to all inclusive, prosperous Nation that everyone of us has party of it, from Ras casayr to Ras Kambooni.
Hon. Mohamed abdilaahi farmaajo has been Diplomat, United states civil servant for 18 years and Somali premier from Oct 20100 June 2011. Through years he has worked as from Diplomat to premiership he Become most recognizable politician of all time due his leadership. Farmaajo show how much he values, People, the country, teamwork of doing job done. Many Surprise his closeness to military, Civil society, his working family and friends. He immediately changes perception of people from leader who works for people, by the people not power hunger individual who put his interest first. Do anybody ask why people in Somalia cross tribes lines support him his leadership in Mogadishu without tribal support in Mogadishu. Many wonder what will happen if he stays another 8 months to leadership.
Let’s us check character and tendency of every leader all time , I believe we have an opportunity and good will of Somalis in general to reclaim our country through selecting Mohamed Abdilaahi whom we already tested his character, he inherited good quality leadership from struggle and movement in the country during his tenure. I believe Somalis need leaders who understand what we loss due tribalism can’t be built through regionalism based tribal chauvinism a more divisions; we need one who can unite us. We need to one who revives moral values judgment, teams work with Values of integrity, cooperation, forgiveness and brotherhood in our people. And while this task is duty of all Somalis primary burden falls the sincerity of Somali leaders and fellow countryman. Let’s watch his vision for Somalia First TAYO forum/Party convention in twin cities, MN by end of march.