Prime Minister Hassan Khaire has suspended a World Bank-funded project targeting Kismayo, Garowe, Mogadishu and Baidoa following public uproar.
A few hours after Finance Minister Abdirahman Beileh announced the signing of the $112 million infrastructure development deal with representatives of the three regions, the PM moved in to suspend it.
According to the state news agency SONNA, the PM suspended the agreement to ‘allow review and inclusion on all regions.”
Somalis had taken to Twitter with some asking why the project left out HirShabelle and Galmudug, the two nascent states which still lag behind in development.
The Somalia Urban Resilience Project (SURP) II was approved by the World Bank December 9, 2019 ‘to deliver prioritized infrastructure in Somalia’s cities and strengthen municipal government capacity.’
The Bank noted plans would also be underway to lay the framework for expansion of the project to cover Galmudug and HirShabelle states.
According a World Bank statement in December, the financing for the II includes a $50 million IDA and $62 million co-financing from the Somalia Multi-Partner Fund (SMPF).