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Somali’s New 36-Member Cabinet Larger Than Speculated


The UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah has welcomed the announcement of the new Somali cabinet by the new Prime Minister Omar Shamarke.

The special representative said the fact that the Prime Minister chose a Government of National Unity as outlined in the 2008 UN-facilitated Djibouti Agreement.

Rashid Abdi, an analyst with the International Crisis Group who monitored the announcement from his base in Nairobi Kenya, told Nightline’s Akwei Thompson contrary to earlier speculation of a leaner, smaller government, this, “by many people’s standards” is a bloated 36-member cabinet including three deputy prime ministers and for the first time, three women.

Abdi said a cursory glance at the appointments shows that the powerful ministries have gone to the Alliance for The Re-liberation of Somalia, led by Sheikh Sharif.

“It also looks like the clan quota system, which is called "4.5" was used in making the cabinet election, he added.”

The Kenyan-based Somali analyst thinks there was a determination to avoid the old practice of recycling leaders.

“Most of the ministers are youthful, and they are new to the cabinet,” Abdi said.

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