National leaders and representatives of regional countries notably Kenya and Ethiopia yesterday converged in the coastal city of Kismayu for the inauguration of the first elected Jubbaland President Ahmed Mohamed Islam.
Led by President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud and Prime Minister Abdirashid Omar Sharmake, the leaders who included Puntland leader Abdiweli Gas, Galmudug State leader Abdikarim Hussein Guled and his Southwest State counterpart Sharif Hassan Adan were also joined by Ethiopia’s foreign minister Tedros Adhonom. Kenya’s parliament majority leader Adan Bare Dualle and senator Yussuf Haji were also in attendance.
However the presence of Galmudug leader, Guled signaled improved relations between him and his Puntland and Jubbaland counterparts who have since its inception failed to recognise Galmudug State. Puntland has always contested what it sees as Galmudug eating into its space under the new boundary arrangement.
Speaking during the ceremony Guled, who was also the former Interior Minister commended the progress in Jubbaland. “I was involved in Jubbaland formation while I was minister and I can see the progress done, both Jubbaland and the Federal Government have managed to find a solution to the difficulties,” he said.
Kenyan senator Hajji called on Federal legislators to respect the president and give him space and time to deliver on his election pledges alluding to the impeachment motion yet to be debated in parliament. His counterpart Duale conveyed a message of goodwill from Kenya’s president Uhuru Kenyatta noting that Kenya was solely interested in peace and stability in Somalia.
“Kenya has got one interest in Somalia and that is for Somalia to gain peace and stability which is also in the interest of Ethiopia,” said Duale.
Madobe’s inauguration as president of Jubbaland comes few days after he expanded the state assembly to include ten more members in a move to appease dissident voices in the region.
His State’s relations with the Federal Parliament in Mogadishu hit an all time low in July with the federal lawmakers declaring the assembly illegally constituted in a motion. However, the development seem to have not had any consequence as exemplified by yesterday’s attendance of Madobe’s inauguration by the country’s top leadership and more than 50 MPs.
Madobe yesterday called on the country’s leaders to united and collaborate for the sake of the country’s peace and stability. “It will not be possible for neighboring countries and international community to help us forever. There will come a time they will be exhausted so we need to organize our self and take charge,” he said.
Madobe promised to deliver quality education, free health care and improve the infrastructure in the next four years of reign.
The Prime Minister Sharmake on his part called on Jubbaland leader to accommodate disgruntled communities so that they also feel represented in the regional state.
Abdinasir Bashir Ahmed