Republican Union (French Somaliland)
The Republic Union was founded by Mahamoud Harbi Farah, a member of the French National Assembly. The party contested the 1957 territorial assembly election, winning 61% of the vote and all 30 seats in the assembly. After the election Harbi became vice-president of the governing council of the territory. At the time, the party was allied to the African Democratic Rally. The party advocated the unification of all Somali-speaking areas into one state.
Harbi and the Republican Union supported full independence in the 1958 referendum. After the referendum had been held (resulting in a defeat for the pro-independentists), pro-French leader Hassan Gouled called for fresh elections to the territorial assembly. Harbi's government was deposed in a no confidence vote and the assembly was dissolved by the French governor Meker.
The Republican Union mobilized protests against the dissolution of the territorial assembly. The protests turned violent; riots erupted and several persons died. The party was illegalized, and the party leaders were jailed. Harbi also disappeared from the local political scene, having been exiled to Cairo by the French authorities in 1958. He died in a plane crash two years later under mysterious circumstances.
- Laudouze, André. Djibouti, nation carrefour. Méridiens. Paris: Karthala, 1982. p. 41
- Laudouze, André. Djibouti, nation carrefour. Méridiens. Paris: Karthala, 1982. p. 44
- Jacques Foccart et Ali Aref
- United States Joint Publications Research Service, Translations on Sub-Saharan Africa, Issues 464-492, (1966), p.24.
- Barrington, Lowell, After Independence: Making and Protecting the Nation in Postcolonial and Postcommunist States, (University of Michigan Press: 2006), p.115
- Laudouze, André. Djibouti, nation carrefour. Méridiens. Paris: Karthala, 1982. p. 47