Extensive Analysis of the Articles of the Motion Against the President

By Samatalis Haille

By Samatalis Haille

Some members of Somalia’s Federal Parliament, FP, 93 of them, have tabled a motion calling for the dismissal of the President of the Federal Republic of Somalia, FRS, on the grounds of gross violation of the Provisional Constitution, PC, and other laws of the country.

According to the PC, per article 92, sections 1-4, such motion may be studied by Constitutional Court, CC, which does not exist now, to see if the allegations have legal grounds. If they do, then 2/3 of the FP members, around 183-184, will be required to dismiss the President.

The first allegation pertaining to gross violation of the PC and other laws of the country is that the President has issued a law published by the official Government publications, Radio Mogadishu, on March 30th, 2014, allowing execution of members of the armed forces and other citizens. Doing so, the motion claims, is gross violation of the Constitution because the President does not have the power to do so, his powers are clearly outlined in article 90 of the PC.

Members of the FP who wrote this motion fail to mention that the law was devised, it appears, to stop daily killings, assassinations and bombings carried out by many groups, but mainly by Shebab and to lesser extent by Somalia’ Security forrces; the latter killing or injuring, in some cases, some civilians and fellow officers.

Trails may have been unfair due to various reasons such as limited human and technical capacities; as a result, an innocent person may have been killed. Nevertheless, a deterrence was needed against people who were carrying out daily assassinations especially in Mogadishu. The general perception is that the last part of 2014 and much of 2015, the killings, assassinations and bombings have been greatly reduced.

This is clear to anyone who follows Somalia’s news, particularly, Mogadishu and its surroundings, very closely on daily basis. I lack time and resources needed to collect data and support or refute the possibility of direct causal link between the execution of some convicted killers and the general stability that Mogadishu, to some extent much of Somalia, now enjoys.

Moreover, the Parliament has passed Sharia law to be part of Somalia’s laws; it allows the execution of the people who kill other people. If so, how can such law be a gross violation of the Constitution of the country?

Members of the FP have also failed to pass anti-terrorism bill which was sitting with them for years now. Who is going to hold them accountable?

The second article of the motion against the President of the FRS lacks details. As such it is not able to furnish materials that will constitute gross violation of the PC or other laws of the country, a matter needed to impeach the President.

The third article states that the President has been taking some powers from the Prime Minister and his Council of Ministers. No specific details again has been given. In fact, an opposing argument can be propounded that enjoys some support. According to article 92 of Somalia’s PC, it is the President that appoints federal level commanders of the armed forces and ambassadors. The current Prime Minister and even the one that preceded him have both appointed ambassadors, such as the current ambassadors to Kenya and Saudi Arabia. The appointment was published in radio Mogadishu website, a Government run radio. The same act was also repeated on September 3, 2015. So, who is taking some powers from another?

The third section of the fourth article of the motion has a merit. Somalia’s Security Forces have not received their salaries and other care that they needed for months, while the President was visiting many countries, and spending money. Now, the President and other relevant entities have to explain why this was the case? The motion also have to explain how this constitutes gross violation of the Constitution and other laws of the country, so as to impeach the President. Moreover, have they warned the President, the Prime Minister and his Council of Ministers that they will take some action if armed forces are not paid on time?

The sixth section of article 4 is yet another claim that has not been supported when it was stated, even though the motion later presents some evidence for it, and this paper will examine that evidence when the analysis reaches there.

The claims in sections 7-11 of article 4 are mere assertions, with no evidence supplied to support them. As a result, there is no need to refute them for they are nothing but assertions.However, the claim in article 11 refers to a law, whose number was, as stated, 28; the law has been effective, as stated again, since August 7th, 2014, after it was published in the official Government publications, Radio Mogadishu. This law, the motion writers claim, contradicts sections of article 87 of the PC. I have searched the website of Radio Mogadishu to see if I can find a law published on the specified date, but I did not find anything related to the law number 28.

In any case, article 92 of the PC assigns the task of determining the legal grounds of the motion against the President to a CC which has not yet been formed, prior submitting the motion to the Parliament for voting purposes.

Article six presents a claim that suggests the President has used powers ( such as claiming that he has the power to control, receive and dispose Somalia’s public assets in US) that does not belong to him, according to the laws of the country, as the Motion writers claim, and the evidence backing this claim has been supplied: quick search of Google led me to acquire a letter that fits the description mentioned in the motion. The letter presented as an evidence was dated a year later after the President was elected and at the time the structure of the Central Bank of Somalia was in progress.

In any case, it is up to the President of the FRS to answer questions regarding this letter, since an answer to this letter will require knowledge about the authenticity of this letter and the matters that it pertains to, something the President has not yet done, to my knowledge.

Article six claims that the President has co-chaired with Nicholas Kay, Special Representative of United Nations Secretary General to Somalia, SRSG, many important conferences pertaining to Somalia.

Doing so, the sponsors of the motion claim, has damaged the nationhood of Somalia and has returned the country to the Transitional Era: a period where the country lacked a permanent government.

The claim in article six does not appear to constitute gross violation of the PC and other laws of the country because co-chairing important conferences with SRSG can be justified on pragmatic grounds.The country heavily relies on Western Nations in many fields, such as security and finances ; these nations play an active role if not a dominant role in the UN system.Somalis can say we will chair alone all conferences pertaining to Somalia when the country is militarily and financially self-reliant, before that co-chairing with others may not be, after all, an issue, much less gross violation of the country’s Constitution and other relevant laws.

Article seven claims that the President came up with habits that oppose the unity of the people and the unification of their political aspirations. The sponsors of the motion did supply an example of this habit: he does not have connections with a region or a village. The President does have a connection with a region: The President of Galmudug regional Adminstration, did oppose this motion. He sided with the President. Demonstrations in support of the President were also reported many times in Banadir and Middle Shabelle regions. These cases suggest connections with these regions.

Parts of article six suspect that the President may have been behind many tribal wars taking place in the country due to his poor policies. Evidence of such acts, not suspicions, may constitute gross violation of the PC and other laws of the country.

The introduction of the second section of the motion claims that the President has deliberately committed national treason and corruption. What is the evidence for this claim? The President, the introduction claims, has made deals with foreign companies without consulting with executive and legislative branches of the Government, as defined by law. In this introduction, the law referred to has not been specified.

In the first article of the second section pertaining to treason and corruption, the motion writers present three claims; first, they say the President and his allies have made deals with fuel company, called Soma Oil and Gas, known to have been founded on corruption, they claim. The article fails to substantiate this claim; second, the article states that the existence of criminal investigation on the company for suspicion that they may have committed corruption in Somalia; the International Press did supply some evidence for this, but still it is a suspicion, not a fact; third, the article claims that the President and/or his allies took bribes from that company.

The third claim fails to make specific statement, much less supply an evidence. Even if the evidence is available else where, the evidence ought to be presented to weigh if it supports the relevant claim. Writers of the motion appear to be content to supply plenty of claims and little or no evidence.

Article 3 and 4 discuss about the sea and air ports of Mogadishu; as usual, the motion makes vague references to laws and supplies no evidence that may constitute gross violation of the Constitution, corruption or treason. One may also ask why the Parliament does not talk about where the revenue of other sea and airports of the country go, such as Kismayo and Bosaso, much less who manages them and whether their management is lawful or not. Why focus on Mogadishu alone?

Samatalis Haille

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