Somalia president sacks Mogadishu mayor

Former Mayor Hassan Mohamed Hussein aka Muungaab

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An official decree from the office of Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud dismissed General Hassan Mohamed Hussein from the powerful post of the Governor of Banadir Region and Mayor of Mogadishu on Wednesday.

By the same decree, the president appointed Mr Yusuf Hussein Jumale to the two positions.

The change of positions was made public by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Interior Affairs Professor Yahye Sheikh.

“By this decree signed by President Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud, General Hassan is no longer the governor of Banadir Region and Mayor of Mogadishu, appointing for the same positions Mr Yusuf Hussein Jumale, a Somali intellectual,” said Professor Sheikh.

UN AGENCIES

In recent weeks, Mayor Hassan was in dispute with the Minister of Internal Security Abdirizak Omar Mohamed over the closure of main roads for security reasons.

The mayor openly objected to an order by Minister Mohamed of road closure and diversion of traffic away from United Nations agencies in Mogadishu for security reasons.

Mayor Hassan said at the time that the minister had no powers to close roads or approve barricades, underlining that as the regional governor and mayor of the city he was the one with powers over the roads.

It seemed that the open opposition to a senior minister’s order annoyed the Cabinet and forced the president to dismiss General Hassan.

Meanwhile, Somalia’s president called on Islamist Al-Shabaab fighters on Thursday to surrender amid reports factions have shifted allegiance from Al-Qaeda to Islamic State.

Both militant franchises are “destroyers”, President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud said in a statement, saying he had followed “with interest the now-public dispute within Al-Shebab, over whether to swear allegiance to Al-Qaeda or the Islamic State.”

Mohamud said the reported divisions were “symptomatic of a group that has lost its way”, and warned that Somalis “do not need a new brand of horror and repression.”

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