Cabinet all set to be unveiled as leaders agree on core issues

Mogadishu, Somalia (SOMALI AGENDA)–Prime minister Omar Abdirashid Sharmarke is expected to unveil his cabinet within the next 48 hours as political consultations between key stakeholders over the shape of Somalia’s incoming government reach conclusion.

The deliberations comprising many different interest groups dragged over the past week as stakeholders diverged considerably over important cabinet positions involving influential associates of the President. Speaking to multiple sources familiar with the negotiation process, SOMALI AGENDA has learned that President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud has ultimately succeeded in adding his powerful aide Farah Sheikh Abdulqadir as the incoming Justice Minister. Farah who is the outgoing Minister for Justice and Constitutional Affairs and the major reason over the sacking of both previous Somali Prime Ministers, will lose the Constitutional Affairs portfolio in the new cabinet.

SOMALI AGENDA has also learned that former national security minister Abdikarim Guled who resigned in May of last year following Al Shabab’s bold assault on the federal parliament will also make a comeback as the incoming Interior Minister. Also making a comeback, the disgraced former National Security and Intelligence Agency director Abdullahi Mohamed Ali who will hold the position of National Security. Abdullahi Mohamed Ali, a relative of President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud who briefly served as Somalia’s ambassador to the United Kingdom, was fired by Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed when he arrested sitting members of parliament and directed nighttime raids on the houses of the president’s political opponents and independent media.

Additionally, SOMALI AGENDA has also learned that former ministers allied to Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed will hold positions in the incoming cabinet. Among them former Information Minister Mustaf Sheikh Ali Dhuxulow and outgoing Women Affairs Minister Khadija Dirie. Both ministers will assume their portfolios in the coming cabinet. The bloated cabinet is also expected to make space for an additional female minister.

According to sources privy to the discussions, former TFG Minister for Constitutional Affairs Abdurahman Hosh Jabril has lost his battle to make a political comeback to fellow clansman and former Puntland minister for Planning and International Cooperation Abdulqadir Abdi Hashi. The decision is almost certain to enrage Abdurahman Hosh Jabril who has been a vocal backer of President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud and Farah Sheikh Abdulkadir.

Apart from the above named individuals, the rest of the cabinet is expected to include a myriad collection of former ministers and politicians.

The cabinet when officially unveiled is certain to dent hopes of a competent and credible cabinet that can deliver Somalia some of the key benchmarks set by the International Community as the country prepares for a democratic transition in 2016.

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