Former President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo, now in self-imposed exile in Turkey, made a rare entrance into Somalia’s federal politics to warn the nation about government’s plan to tamper with the constitution without any oversight.
In his press release published on X (twitter) and Facebook, Farmajo denounced the actions of the current government aimed at unilaterally altering the government structure.
Two days earlier, a similar statement was issued by former leaders concerned about President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud’s attempt to stubbornly continue his quest to extend his term.
Farmajo calls on Parliament to remain vigilant and block any attempts to change its central role when it comes to making major changes in Somalia’s government structure if there is a need for it.
It also asserts that any transition to direct democratic representation must follow established procedures and be based on national consensus.
Indeed, Farmajo also indicated that the point of view of the Puntland region must be taken into account if we want to make changes to the structure of government.
Due to his personal dispute with President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, the Puntland president has refused since last year to sit on the National Consultative Council. This forum brings together the president, prime minister and regional leaders to discuss national interests.
Farmajo was forced to leave the presidency amid a concerted campaign by foreign diplomats.Under American and British pressure, he had to let his opponents manage the 2021-2022 elections which of course were rigged.
His successor, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, has since he took power in 2022 let these diplomats dictate his internal and foreign policy for Somalia.
President Hassan Sheikh’s intention to extend his mandate and that of regional leaders also sparked public outcry last May. Farmajo wasn’t the first public figure to react but his popularity gave former leaders’ communique more visibility and more weight.
The current outcry that the president is working behind the scenes to tamper with key constitutional elements of the federal structure has thrust his actions into the spotlight.
Suffering from acute unpopularity, particularly due to corruption, mismanagement of the country’s economy and security, and disregard for Somalia’s territorial integrity, he appears worried about his chances of returning in power after this mandate.