GOOBJOOG NEWS|MOGADISHU: Supremacy battles between outgoing president Mohamed Farmaajo and Prime Minister Mohamed Roble hit the crescendo Tuesday night as both offices went on and all out war for the soul of the National Intelligence and Security Agency amid fears the battle is now over yet.
At least one phase of the battle-Fahad Yasin’s resignation seemed to have eased but not ended the row as the controversial immediate former intelligence boss is coming back to Villa Somalia where he started with Farmaajo in 2017. Farmaajo appointed Yasin as his National Security Advisor replacing Abdisaid Ali who now becomes the Chief of Staff at Villa Somalia, a position first held by Yasin in 2017 at the onset of the Farmaajo presidency.
Farmaajo also appointed Colonel Yasin Abdullahi Mohamud, the current Commander of the Benadir Regional Intelligence Service as interim director-general of the National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA). This followed the resignation of Fahad as NISA boss. Sources said he travelled to Turkey before the 48 hour ultimatum by PM Roble for a report on the killing of intelligence agent Ikran Tahlil Farah came to a close.
But in a swift rejoinder, PM Roble directed General Bashir Mohamed Jama aka Gobe to move into office and urged staff at NISA to work ‘fully’ with the new interim director. Roble appointed Bashir Gobe on Sunday a few hours after Yasin declined to honour the PM’s ultimatum and instead called on Farmaajo to convene a National Security Council meeting so that he could address it on the circumstances surrounding the death of Ikran Farah.
“The Prime Minister called on the security agencies to strengthen security and stability in the country, protect the rights of citizens, and be vigilant against any action that could infringe on the freedoms and fundamental rights of the Somali people,” a statement from the Office of the Prime Minister Tuesday night read in part.
Roble noted that he was concerned by attempts to frustrate efforts to bring to justice the killers of Ikran Farah. “The Prime Minister finds it unfortunate that the rights of Somali citizens are being politicized, a practice that is a threat to the country’s system of government and should be addressed by anyone who thinks so.”
The tit-for-tat battles between the two offices also spread to control of state machinery. Both the state-run news agency SONNA and Somali National Television (SNTV) did not carry statements from Villa Somalia and instead published the PM’s directives.
The political battles by the two leaders is likely to adversely jeopardise the elections which are entering a critical phase with the Lower House elections set to kick off soon.