GOOBJOOG NEWS|MOGADISHU: The embattled outgoing president of Somalia Mohamed Farmaajo has threatened ‘diplomatic action’ against some of the country’s key donors accusing them of attempts to dethrone him as he gradually becomes an isolated man in the international arena.
In a statement through his Foreign Affairs Minister Mohamed Abdirizak, Farmaajo said the international community which has propped his administration over the last four years including paying salaries for some of his staff was using humanitarian assistance as ‘blackmail’.
Noting that he was ‘alarmed’ by remarks by some foreign governments and organisations including the UK, US and EU, Farmaajo said, “These statements are advancing unconstitutional regime change agenda and inciting the Somali people against their legitimate government threatening peace and stability.”
The statement added that the international community was using humanitarian assistance as a stick to force the Federal Government to back down on the new illegal resolution passed by the Lower House which extended Farmaajo’s stay in office for two more years.
“FGS appreciates the international community’s continued support but will reject any attempts to use humanitarian assistance to blackmail the country and advance their agenda,” the statement read in part.
The US, EU and the UK have threatened to impose sanctions, cut aid and review relations with Somalia in the wake of the illegal resolution which has since received Farmaajo’s signature.
The push back by Farmaajo and his administration which is now risking a pariah status in the global arena signals the outgoing president’s intent on sticking on to power but also highlights an irony of sorts given his government’s significant dependence on donor aid.
According to the 2021 National Budget, Somalia is banking on donors to fund 60% of the $680 million budget. Only 39% of the budget will be funded locally according to the 2021 Appropriations Act passed by Parliament late last year.
Should the donors make real their threat, the cuts might cripple the implementation of the budget dealing a blow to the country’s economy especially in light of the triple threat of COVID-19, locust invasions, and the perennial erratic climatic conditions which adversely impact the economy every year.