PRESS RELEASE – PARLIAMENTARIAN CAUCUSES
The parliamentary caucuses, TTQ (AKA National Reformist Caucus), KBQ (National Salvation Caucus) and Madasha Maslaxadda Qaranka ( MMQ) are deeply concerned about the recent developments concerning the formation of a cabinet for the proposed government of Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke.
The Caucuses are concerned that the president and the Prime Minister were, all along, dialoguing with the parliamentary caucuses in bad faith, in the sense that they have not addressed the fundamental issues relevant to governance raised by the caucuses in the last few weeks. This is evidenced by the formation of the new cabinet announced on the 27th of January 2015.
The caucuses have repeatedly called for the formation of a representative, diverse, national unity government that can steer the country out of this turbulent transitional period and effectively carry out all programs and projects integral to the optimal realization of Vision 2016 and the directives of the New Deal.
The President and the Prime Minister presented a cabinet that did not meet the expectation and consent of parliament and the Prime Minister consequently withdrew the list a few hours before the motion of confidence was to be tabled in parliament, acknowledging that his government would not obtain the confidence of parliament. The glaring weaknesses of this cabinet as pointed out by the caucuses were as follows:
1. It was a closed partisan cabinet that was not representative and was stacked by the President’s key allies and ideological soul mates.
2. It did not accommodate the caucuses for cabinet posts even though the caucuses enjoy a wide majority in parliament.
3. All important Vision 2016/New Deal cabinet posts (Finance, Defense, National Security, Interior and Federalism, Justice, Constitutional Affairs, Foreign Affairs etc.) were allocated to one ideological team that has no parliamentary base but whose only claim to power is its close relationship with the president.
The current proposed 20 person cabinet is no different than the previous one because (a) it is a closed cabinet that is not representative and is stacked by the President’s key allies and ideological soul mates, (b) it does not accommodate the caucuses for cabinet posts even though the caucuses enjoy a wide majority in parliament, and (c) all important Vision 2016/New Deal cabinet posts (as highlighted above) are allocated to one ideological team that has no parliamentary base but whose only claim to power is its close relationship with the president.
The concerns of the caucuses as mentioned above present serious implications for the political stability of Somalia and for the very political future of Somalia. As we embark on the transitional processes leading to the realization of Vision 2016, it is important that Somali leaders refrain from the politics of subtraction and Zero sum game. As parliamentarians constituting the majority of the parliament, the caucuses ought to have been represented and factored in in this important transitional cabinet that will be squarely engaged in the deliberations and decision making processes of such crucial issues as the review of the constitution, the nature of the federation processes and state formations, and the elections that will determine the political as well as the ideological dispensation of the post 2016 era.
The three Caucuses are determined to prevent the highjacking of the essential priority national Somali agenda by an identifiable ideological group, and as such we will utilize all parliamentary procedures to put a stop to this nefarious agenda. It is our belief that the Somali national agenda can only be carried out by a coalition of groupings of different stripes that have the political will to agree on a common platform that addresses the public interest of the Somali people as opposed to personal or group interests. Finally, the caucuses are open for genuine dialogue in order to resolve the current political crisis.