United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today welcomed the Parliamentary endorsement of Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke as the new Prime Minister of the Federal Republic of Somalia in a step towards resolving the country’s current political crisis.
The Somali Parliament dismissed former Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed on 6 December with a vote of ‘no confidence’ due to reported disputes between Mr. Ahmed and Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud over political appointments.
The ouster also came amid a recent spate of extremist violence in the East African country, as the terrorist group, Al-Shabaab, continues to wage a simmering insurgency. Most recently, in the city of Baidoa, a terrorist attack left at least fifteen people dead with many more wounded.
At a press briefing in New York, UN Spokesperson, Stephane Dujarric, said the Secretary-General encouraged the new Prime Minister, the President and the Speaker of Parliament “to work together to regain momentum in the political process and to maintain a close working relationship with the interim regional administrations and emerging federal member states.”
“The Secretary-General urges all parties to work on swift establishment of an inclusive Federal Government,” Mr. Dujarric told reporters. “Political leadership is required to deliver the ambitious agenda of peace building and political transformation. [Mr. Ban] encourages the country’s leaders to redouble their efforts to this end and take steps to prevent future political crises.”
The Spokesperson added that the Secretary-General had taken note of the “significant progress” made in pushing back Al-Shabaab and in building a federal state with strong institutions. However, he continued, “much still needs to be done before the Federal Government’s mandate expires in September 2016.”
SOURCE: AFRICA RENEWAL