News / Africa

    Puntland Cuts Ties With Somalia Over Formation of New State

    Somalia’s semi-autonomous Puntland region has cut ties with the central government after it learned of a plan to form a new federal state in the center of the country that would allegedly include part of the Puntland region.

    Late last month, the Somali federal government and representatives from the central regions of Galgudud and Mudug signed a document that said the region's leaders would work together to form a new administration.

    In a statement, the U.N. special representative of the secretary-general for Somalia, Nicholas Kay, welcomed the move but warned of the challenges that await the leaders.

    Kay urged the leaders to solve any differences through dialogue and negotiations involving all clan leaders, women and civil society groups.

    Days later, Puntland cut all ties with the Mogadishu government over the formation of the new state.

    Federal state

    Somalia's constitution allows two or more regions to form a federal state.

    While Galgudud sits entirely in Somali government territory, the Mudug region is split in two, with one side being controlled by Puntland and the other by local authorities affiliated with the Somali government.

    Mohamed Ali Hashi, a politician from Puntland, said Mudug was split in two because of deadly tribal conflict 20 years ago, and that recombining the regions will not be easy.

    If you want to combine the (Mudug region), “there is a lot of work to be done before you take that decision. The local people who are inhabitants have to be consulted, the regional government of Puntland has to be consulted,” Hashi said. “If they agree, no problem. But if they don't agree, you cannot force them, so I think that was a mistake."

    Somali media reports said some clans and local groups are also opposed to the deal, which was signed in Mogadishu last month.   

    Alihashi Mohamed Sahal, a central Somali politician who supports creation of the new federal state, said the people and leaders of the two regions should decide what kind of administration they want.

    "All parties should be given and supported in the reconciliation efforts and after that, they themselves should agree and decide on how they are going to form their state,” Sahal said. “If Mudug wants to be part of Garowe and Bosaso (Puntland) or Mudug wants to join Galgudud and Hiiraan regions, they should do it without fighting among themselves."

    Constitutional test

    Abdirahman Mohamed, the head of a political consulting firm in Mogadishu, said the push to create the new state will be a test for the central government and the provisional federal constitution.

    "We will have regions that are basically inhabited by clans that come from different backgrounds, different clans in this case.  If this one goes through, this will create a precedent whereby regions will start to affiliate themselves with their clans, not according to the regions that are stipulated in the constitution,” Mohamed said.

    Despite the bickering among politicians, the United Nations and international community have insisted the process of federalism is necessary to build a stable and peaceful Somalia.

    You May Like

    US Lawmakers Vow to Continue Immigrant Program for Afghan Interpreters

    Congressional inaction threatens funding for effort which began in 2008 and has allowed more than 20,000 interpreters, their family members to immigrate to US

    Brexit's Impact on Russia Stirs Concern

    Some analysts see Brexit aiding Putin's plans to destabilize European politics; others note that an economically unstable Europe is not in Moscow's interests

    US to Train Cambodian Government on Combating Cybercrime

    Concerns raised over drafting of law, as critics fear cybercrime regulations could be used to restrict freedom of expression and stifle political dissent

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Xaaji Dhagax from: Somalia
    August 12, 2014 9:55 PM
    The 22-plus year’s long fratricidal conflict brought our nation into this kind of fragmentation. Now with this new Puntland conflict boiling in front of us caused our nation to hit new low in our confidence to govern ourselves independently.

    Our federal government was intentionally established on clan based (4.5) system. This clan system is obsolete, primitive and brutal. It gives major clans the authority to use heavy handed against minorities for little reason and whenever they want.
    All major clans want to have their own autonomous land for future bargaining in federal system. If things don’t go on their way then they will threaten to have their own republic. This is what’s happening now in Puntland.
    Somalia is very small country but unfortunately we are dealing with about 11 semi-republic regions within our country.
    Without due process of democratic process, every clan want to become a head of state, a prime minister, minister and parliamentarian at the same time.
    This kind of behavior has to be stopped with force if necessary.
    In Response

    by: Ina Hagi Waraabe from: Berbera
    August 13, 2014 1:17 PM
    I assume that you are one of minority clan or what Mogadishu people call OTHERS. Right?

    Please do not count Somaliland as Somali Republic regions. We ar done with you, and you all continue to do useless clan system government in Somalia.

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Baghdad Bikers Defy War with a Roari
    X
    June 28, 2016 10:33 AM
    Baghdad is a city of contradictions. War is a constant. Explosions and kidnappings are part of daily life. But the Iraqi capital remains a thriving city, even if a little beat up. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on how some in Baghdad are defying the stereotype of a nation at war by pursuing a lifestyle known for its iconic symbols of rebellion: motorbikes, leather jackets and roaring engines.
    Video

    Video Baghdad Bikers Defy War with a Roar

    Baghdad is a city of contradictions. War is a constant. Explosions and kidnappings are part of daily life. But the Iraqi capital remains a thriving city, even if a little beat up. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on how some in Baghdad are defying the stereotype of a nation at war by pursuing a lifestyle known for its iconic symbols of rebellion: motorbikes, leather jackets and roaring engines.
    Video

    Video Melting Pot of Immigrants Working to Restore US Capitol Dome

    The American Iron Works company is one of the firms working to renovate the iconic U.S. Capitol Dome. The company employs immigrants of many different cultural and national backgrounds. VOA’s Arman Tarjimanyan has more.
    Video

    Video Testing Bamboo as Building Material

    For thousands of years various species of bamboo - one of the world's most versatile plants - have been used for diverse purposes ranging from food and medicine to textiles and construction. But its use on a large scale is hampered because it's not manufactured to specific standards but grown in the ground. A University of Pittsburgh professor is on track to changing that. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Orphanage in Iraqi City Houses Kids Who Lost their Parents to Attacks by IS

    An orphanage in Iraqi Kurdistan has become home to scores of Yazidi children who lost their parents after Islamic State militants took over Sinjar in Iraq’s Nineveh Province in 2014. Iraqi Kurdish forces backed by the U.S. airstrikes have since recaptured Sinjar but the need for the care provided by the orphanage continues. VOA’s Kawa Omar filed this report narrated by Rob Raffaele.
    Video

    Video Re-Opening Old Wounds in a Bullet-Riddled Cultural Landmark

    A cultural landmark before Lebanon’s civil war transformed it into a nest of snipers, Beirut’s ‘Yellow House’ is once again set to play a crucial role in the city.  Built in a neo-Ottoman style in the 1920s, in September it is set to be re-opened as a ‘memory museum’ - its bullet-riddled walls and bunkered positions overlooking the city’s notorious ‘Green Line’ maintained for posterity. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Brexit Resounds in US Presidential Contest

    Britain’s decision to leave the European Union is resounding in America’s presidential race. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, Republican presumptive nominee Donald Trump sees Britain’s move as an affirmation of his campaign’s core messages, while Democrat Hillary Clinton sees the episode as further evidence that Trump is unfit to be president.
    Video

    Video New York Pride March A Celebration of Life, Mourning of Loss

    At this year’s march in New York marking the end of pride week, a record-breaking crowd of LGBT activists and allies marched down Manhattan's Fifth Avenue, in what will be long remembered as a powerful display of solidarity and remembrance for the 49 victims killed two weeks ago in an Orlando gay nightclub.
    Video

    Video NASA Juno Spacecraft, Nearing Jupiter, to Shed Light on Gas Giant

    After a five-year journey, the spacecraft Juno is nearing its destination, the giant planet Jupiter, where it will enter orbit and start sending data back July 4th. As Mike O'Sullivan reports from Pasadena, California, the craft will pierce the veil of Jupiter's dense cloud cover to reveal its mysteries.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora