Southwestern Somalia

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Southwestern State of Somalia
Koonfur-Galbeed Soomaaliya  (SO)
Federal Member State of Somalia

Life span?
 

Flag of Southwestern Somalia

Flag

Capital Barawe
Government Regional administration
History
 -  Established November 2014
 -  Disestablished Enter end date

Southwestern Somalia (Somali: Koonfur-Galbeed Soomaaliya), also known as the South West State of Somalia, is an autonomous region in southwestern Somalia. It was originally founded by Hasan Muhammad Nur Shatigadud, leader of the Rahanweyn Resistance Army (RRA) on 1 April 2002.[1][2] After its dissolution in 2005, the territory was re-established in November 2014 as an official Federal Member State of Somalia.

Overview[edit]

The territory was officially known as the Southwestern State of Somalia (SWS) (Somali: Dowlad Goboleedka Koonfur-Galbeed ee Soomaaliya), and intended to consist of six Somali administrative regions (gobolka): Bay, Bakool, Middle Juba (Jubada Dhexe), Lower Shabelle (Shabeelada Hoose), Gedo and Lower Juba (Jubada Hoose) regions. The establishment of the autonomous state was a move to show the disaffection of the RRA with the nascent Mogadishu-based Transitional National Government (TNG), and an act to counter the influence of the Somalia Reconciliation and Restoration Council (SRRC) in the same regions.[2] In 2005, the state was officially dissolved after its leader Shatigadud had joined the Transitional Federal Parliament in November 2004 and later became Minister of Finance in January 2005 in the Transitional Federal Government (TFG), the TNG's successor.[3]

Women at a political function in support of the Southwestern State of Somalia administration (March 2014).

In December 2013, a convention began in Baidoa between Federal Government officials and local representatives with the aim of establishing an autonomous state in the area under the Provision Federal Constitution.[4] Two simultaneous political processes for the establishment of a new Southwestern State of Somalia were underway: one led by former Parliament Speaker Sharif Hassan Sheikh Adan, which proposed a three region state consisting of the Bay, Bakool and Lower Shabelle provinces; another led by traditional elders of Digil Mirifle, which proposed instead the re-establishment of a six region Southwestern Somalia state consisting of the Bay, Bakool, Lower Shabelle, Gedo, Middle Jubba and Lower Jubba provinces.[5]

On 3 March 2014, Madobe Nunow was elected President by supporters of the six region state proposal. Internal and Federal Affairs Minister Abdullahi Godah Barre indicated that the Somali federal government would not recognize the six region convention outcome, as it contravenes an earlier Jubba agreement signed in Addis Ababa between the Somali federal authorities and the autonomous Jubaland administration in southwestern Somalia. The Jubba agreement stipulates that Jubaland's constituent provinces are instead to be officially administered by the Jubaland regional authorities.[5][6] Addressing the 425th meeting of the AU Peace and Security Council on 25 March 2014, UN Special Representative for Somalia Nicholas Kay similarly indicated that he would continue to work closely with the AU, EU and IGAD to support a Somali federal government-led three-region state formation process for the southwestern provinces.[7]

On 27 March 2014, 733 delegates in Baidoa representing the Bay, Bakool and Lower Shabelle regions elected Mohamed Haji Abdinur as president of the Southwestern State of Somalia. Abdinur is a veteran politician and a close ally of former Parliament Speaker Sharif Hassan Sheikh Adan. Of the representatives that took part in the three-region state elections, 723 voted in favor of Abdinur while 10 abstained.[8]

On 30 March 2014, President of Somalia Hassan Sheikh Mohamud visited Baidoa to defuse political tension between the two competing Southwestern State delegations. The autonomous Puntland regional administration in northeastern Somalia issued a statement the following day congratulating Abdinur on his election as president of the Southwestern State. The Puntland State House also expressed support for the three-region state process in Baidoa, and indicated that the Puntland authorities were prepared to provide technical and experience-related assistance to the nascent federal state.[9]

On 22 June 2014, the federal government concluded its mediation between the supporters of the parallel three-region and six-region processes for a new Southwestern State of Somalia. Wings from both sides had reportedly reached an agreement on the prospective regional state's formation. On 23 June 2014, the office of Federal Parliament Speaker Mohamed Osman Jawari hosted an event announcing the merger of the two competing administrations into a single three-region state, which is to be composed of the Bay, Bakool and Lower Shabelle provinces.[10]

Administration[edit]

Establishment[edit]

On 23 June 2014, President of Somalia Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed, and Parliament Speaker Mohamed Osman Jawari oversaw an official ceremony in Mogadishu marking the merger of the two competing administrations into a single three-region state, which is to be composed of the Bay, Bakool and Lower Shabelle provinces. The pact stipulates that the new polity will be led by an Interim South West Administration consisting of representatives from both sides. According to an official press communique, the opposing sides are slated to form a thirteen-member technical committee, appointing five members apiece to the body alongside three members selected by the Federal Government. The panel is then within ten days scheduled to prepare a roadmap for the interim administration's formation. Additionally, the Federal Government is slated to facilitate consultations between the Interim South West Administration and Jubaland over mutual concerns and interests.[11][12] The UN Special Representative for Somalia Nicholas Kay,[13] the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon,[14] the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Mission Commission for Somalia Mahamat Saleh Annadif,[15] and the U.S. Special Representative for Somalia James P. McAnulty all welcomed the Southwestern State of Somalia agreement, commended the principals on their constructive consultations, acknowledged the Federal Government's key role in facilitating the talks, and pledged to continue supporting the local post-conflict reconstruction process.[16] On 25 June 2014, the federal Cabinet unanimously approved the signed accord.[17]

On 16 July 2014, the establishment of the Technical Committee on Formation of Interim South West Administration was announced and endorsed at a formal ceremony in Mogadishu. The panel is to be supported by a group of federal ministers under the authority of the Prime Minister.[18]

In September 2014, Parliament Speaker Mohamed Osman Jawari and UN Special Representative for Somalia Nicholas Kay visited Baidoa to finalize talks over the South West state's formation.[19] Jawari subsequently announced that a reconciliation conference would be held in the city on 14 September to formally unify the competing three-region and six-region local administrations.[20] Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed officially opened the summit,[21] which was attended by Lower Shabelle, Bay and Bakool provincial representatives, clan elders and politicians.[20]

In October 2014, President Mohamud officially opened a state formation conference in Baidoa for the three-region Southwestern State of Somalia. The UN-financed summit was attended by 380 delegates from the state's constituent Bay, Bakool and Lower Shabelle provinces, as well as UN Envoy to Somalia Nicholas Kay, IGAD Envoy to Somalia Mohamed Abdi Affey, and the Ambassador of Denmark to Somalia, among other officials.[22] On 7 November 2014, the Southwestern State of Somalia was officially established, following the conclusion of the two-week Baidoa conference. The delegates from the new regional state's constituent Bay, Bakool and Lower Shabelle provinces unanimously agreed to make Barawe its official capital.[23] They also approved a new regional state constitution.[24] On 17 November 2014, former Parliament Speaker Sharif Hassan Sheikh Adan was elected President of the three region Southwestern State of Somalia.[25]

On 17 December 2014, the six-region South West Somalia administration joined the finalized three-region South West Somalia administration. The merger came after a power sharing agreement signed in Baidoa between both sides, which stipulates that the South West Somalia six-region's leadership will be granted the new federal state's vice president and parliament speaker positions.[26]

Composition[edit]

As of December 2014, the South West State of Somalia's executive branch of government is composed of:[27]

President
Cabinet
  • Minister of Interior - Abdirahman Ibrahim Adan
  • Minister of Finance - Hassan Ibraahim Lugbur
  • Minister of Agriculture - Mohamed Hassan Fiqi
  • Minister of Justice - Ahmed Sheik Hassan

Flag[edit]

The new state flag of the Southwestern State of Somalia.

In 2014, the reconstituted Southwestern State of Somalia inaugurated a new regional state flag.[28]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "SOMALIA: RRA sets up autonomous region". IRIN. 1 April 2002. Retrieved 2007-02-04. 
  2. ^ a b "Third autonomous region breaks with Somalia". Afrol News. 2 March 2002. Retrieved 2007-02-04. 
  3. ^ "Southwestern Somalia". Worldstatesmen. Retrieved 13 December 2013. 
  4. ^ "Somalia: 600 arrested in Baidoa security sweep". Garowe Online. 15 December 2013. Retrieved 22 December 2013. 
  5. ^ a b "Somalia: Baidoa gears up for controversial election amid growing concern". Garowe Online. 3 March 2014. Retrieved 5 March 2014. 
  6. ^ "Somalia: Federal Govt rejects Baidoa election outcome". Garowe Online. 4 March 2014. Retrieved 5 March 2014. 
  7. ^ "SOMALIA: UN supports three-region state for Baydhaba, its envoy says". Raxanreeb. 25 March 2014. Retrieved 26 March 2014. 
  8. ^ "Somalia: Baidoa convention announces new president amid political instability". Garowe Online. 27 March 2014. Retrieved 29 March 2014. 
  9. ^ "Somalia: Puntland Govt voices support for three-region state election". Garowe Online. 31 March 2014. Retrieved 1 April 2014. 
  10. ^ "Somalia: Federal Govt to recognize three-region state following lengthy mediation". Garowe Online. 22 June 2014. Retrieved 23 June 2014. 
  11. ^ "Somalia: Rival politicians agree on Interim South West Admin". Garowe Online. 23 June 2014. Retrieved 24 June 2014. 
  12. ^ "SOMALIA: PM Abdiweli mentions agreement of SW administration recognized the need for a political strategy that establishes a legitimate governance". Raxanreeb. 24 June 2014. Retrieved 24 June 2014. 
  13. ^ "UN Representative for Somalia welcomes agreement on new Interim South West Administration in Baidoa". Horseed Media. 24 June 2014. Retrieved 24 June 2014. 
  14. ^ "SOMALIA: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon commends South West State agreement to establish a new interim regional administration". Raxanreeb. 25 June 2014. Retrieved 25 June 2014. 
  15. ^ "SOMALIA: AU supports the agreement towards the South West State of Somalia". Raxanreeb. 25 June 2014. Retrieved 25 June 2014. 
  16. ^ "SOMALIA: U.S. Government welcomes Baidoa conference Three-Region state agreement". Raxanreeba. 24 June 2014. Retrieved 24 June 2014. 
  17. ^ "SOMALIA: Cabinet approves agreement reached by opposing sides in South West Somalia". Raxanreeb. 25 June 2014. Retrieved 25 June 2014. 
  18. ^ "SOMALIA: Technical Committee on Formation of Interim South West State Administration Endorsed". Raxanreeb. 17 July 2014. Retrieved 17 July 2014. 
  19. ^ "SOMALIA: Baidoa to host reconciliation conference for Digil Mirifle clans, speaker of the parliament says". Raxanreeb. 12 September 2014. Retrieved 12 September 2014. 
  20. ^ a b "Somalia: Parliament Speaker announces reconciliation conference". Garowe Online. 11 September 2014. Retrieved 12 September 2014. 
  21. ^ "SOMALIA: Premier Abdiweli leads a delegation to London". Raxanreeb. 15 September 2014. Retrieved 16 September 2014. 
  22. ^ "Somali president officially opens state formation conference in Baidoa". Goobjoog. 29 October 2014. Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  23. ^ "Somalia Establishes New State". Haberler. 7 November 2014. Retrieved 8 November 2014. 
  24. ^ "SOMALIA: South-west state endorses a new constitution". Raxanreeb. 8 November 2014. Retrieved 9 November 2014. 
  25. ^ "Somalia: Former Parliament Speaker elected Southwest State President". Garowe Online. 17 November 2014. Retrieved 18 November 2014. 
  26. ^ "The administration of South West Somalia, six regions joins the newly formed administration led by Sharif Hassan". Goobjoog. 18 December 2014. Retrieved 18 December 2014. 
  27. ^ "The president of southwest state nominated some of his cabinet ministers". Goobjoog. 19 December 2014. Retrieved 19 December 2014. 
  28. ^ "South Western State of Somalia (Somalia)". Flagspot. Retrieved 10 June 2014.