Editorial: Time to withdraw Abdullahi Mohamed Ali’s nomination as ambassador to Turkey

EDITORAL

SOMALI AGENDA can confirm that Somalia will soon name a new ambassador to the Republic of Turkey. According to a confidential letter of credence dated on May 25th 2015 and seen by SOMALI AGENDA, the Federal Government has selected the former director of Somalia’s premier intelligence agency, the National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA) Abdullahi Mohamed Ali as the country’s new ambassador to Turkey. The appointment of the controversial Abdullahi Mohamed Ali will carry serious political ramifications as Somalia attempts to reset its relationship with key international partners.

Abdullahi Mohamed Ali, a man steeped in controversy has over the years developed a penchant for rash behaviors and bickering. Last summer, a personal feud with the then district commissioner of Mogadishu’s strategic Wadajir district Ahmed Hassan Addow (Ahmed Daaci) quickly turned into an all out war when forces loyal to Abdullahi Mohamed Ali attempted to raid the residence of the district commissioner. By the time the battle was over, dozens lay dead including civilians and the government’s relationship with a key constituent was ruined almost permanently.

Abdullahi Mohamed Ali’s adventurism culminated with another serious feud this time with the country’s then Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed. During the process of the feud, Abdullahi Mohamed Ali personally threatened the Prime Minister and famously jailed a member of the Somali Federal Parliament. This prompted the Prime Minister to fire his director of National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA) but the Prime Minister himself was soon booted out as a result of a power struggle with the country’s President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud engineered by Abdullahi Mohamed Ali and the Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Farah Sheikh Abdulqadir.

Since 2011, Turkey has invested tens of millions of dollars worth of projects in Somalia and bankrolled numerous infrastructural expansions. The country today hosts thousands of Somali students and is training hundreds more for the Somali armed forces. The appointment of Abdullahi Mohamed Ali as Somalia’s ambassador to the Republic of Turkey will derail and poison the strategic and historical alliance between the two countries.

As a failed ambassador to the United Kingdom, Abdullahi Mohamed Ali has neither the temperament to represent Somalia at such a prestigious level nor does he has the qualifications necessary to justify his selection. The Federal Government of Somalia should seriously reconsider its nomination of Abdullahi Mohamed Ali and reexamine its options to move the country’s relationship with the Republic of Turkey forward.

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