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Published On: Wed, Dec 6th, 2017

How Can We Make Somaliland Great?

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The role of a good leader is not to have all the ideas; it’s to create a culture where everyone can have ideas and feel that they’re valued.

When a leader leads the state according to his own outlook, people lose faith in the state. When a leader plays the tribal card and smears his political rivals, people lose faith in their government. When a leader brings people of his own tribe into government – and more important into the army, people lose faith in the government. When the national treasury becomes the leader’s private bank account, people lose faith in the state. When a leader secures the rights of some people by the denial of the rights to others, peope lose trust in the state.

When people lose faith in the state, they take solace in the tribe, and the tribe is the natural enemy of the nation. When people lose their jobs for reasons of tribalism and nepotism, they lose faith in the state, and take refuge in the tribe, and as more people lose faith in the state, they begin to trouble the peace of the nation.

Faith is a fickle custodian of unity in an era of megalomania. Its absence increases the tention between the tribal factions that engage in control of power. Both are held together by trust. If a faction feels a threat to its position of strength by the other faction, conflicts arise and peace becomes untenable.

Conflicts and clashes arise when a political tribal marriage is breached and broken.This is true of all tribal politics where tribal states become necessary. A state built by tribes could only be flourished when confidence-building measures between the tribes have a strong foundation.

Politics and power are facts of life. No society can run its affairs without politics and power. People argue and disagree, about how they should live, who should govern over whom and how power is distributed or monopolised.

In Somsliland, some people (tribes) rejoice in this, seeing in political participation and government the possibility of building power, wealth, and authority. It is then this that the ghost of megalomania has become the real driving force of Somaliland tribes.

The first sin of bad government is arrogance coupled with ignorance. Putting loyalty to the the immediate family ahead of loyalty to the state is undoubtedly among the policies that bad leaderships bring into force. And when loyalty to the nation is limited to a narrow circle of trust around the immediate family; the state turns to be an object of suspicion.

Most of Somaliland problems in the last seven years have risen from the inability to complete the process of a file that converts intention into reality. What was largely lacked was honesty, competency, proper decision making, national vision and justices.

As we head into the year 2018, this is a good time to come to terms with the truth of the matter. As a people, and as a democracy, we have not matured to the point where we can self-govern. What we need is a government that can discipline itself.

Somaliland is a country that demands strong leadership, the kind that can make tough decisions and take responsibility when things don’t go as planned.

The kind of leadership that is willing to be accountable to the people. At this point in our history, just 25 years after seccesion, we are in a political space where true leadership cannot start with the government. We are still bickering like two kids squabbling in the backseat on a car, while we are yet unable to know exactly where we are right, where we are wrong and are not able to create the ideas and the vision that reflect the sense of what Somaliland will look like tomorrow.

The structure of government does not change, whether it is brilliant or awful. A president presides. A Cabinet sits in attendance. What we need to change is our attitude of how we do things and govern ourselves.

Every government collapses when common purpose is lost, when every minister becomes his own master and people become servants.

We are in the age of challenges and change. The challenges Somaliland faces are many. Poverty across the board and poor leadershhip are our own basic challenges. Culture deficiency is another major problem. Corruption is a cancer that killed and still continues to kill us. The ghost of negative tribslism
is what makes us chained to the ground and keeps us in kraals.

Leadership is constantly measured by utility. Loyalty is a variable virtue qualified by beehive ambitions. Clanish rainbow is no guarantee of peace, nor a good gesture for making Somaliland great. Megalomania is just a useless quarrel through intense and immoral politics.

No battle is lost until it is fought. The tribal camps are finally in place, the coalition is glued to the task, and the commanders are named. He who will look at the past will recognise the reality.

A government of inclusion, whose motto is unity, faith, peace and progress, cannot abandon what is right and hope to retain its credibility.

God bless Somaliland.

By:Jama Falaag
Hargeisa, Somaliland.

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