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The Fierce Nationalistic: The Elite Mentality of the Somali Political Unity

Some say, one of the options to restore Somaliland-Somalia reunification is the use of military coercion, or to impose sanctions to prevent international aid to induce unsolicited unity. The intention of the Somalia elite is to put people of Somaliland the very same oppressive treatment – the prejudiced and cruel exercise of political authority. After all these political and economic inequity as well as the long-drawn-out social grievances of unjust, Somaliland voluntarily withdrew the union after ten years of blood-spattered war, which killed tens of thousands of innocent civilians, mostly women and children as a result of aerial bombardment and heavy artillery shelling that targeted predetermined densely populated dwellings and crowds (Drystdale, 1992).

Since the disintegration of the unjust union, people of Somaliland accomplished as Pham argued ‘’to not only establish external security and internal stability—enough of the latter, in fact, to have developed what is arguably the most democratic politics in the region—but have done so without the benefit of international recognition of their existence or much foreign development assistance’’ (Pham, 2012). This refers that Somaliland marked and justified every condition of state, including the Montevideo Convention on the rights and duties of states. Ever since it declared its sovereignty the country relished a relative and robust peace, it has its own currency regulated by the Central Bank, legalised capable bureaucracy, and has functioning government institutions. Unlike Somalia, the country also has self-governing people’s elected multiparty political system with the foundations of democratically elected office-bearers, including President, Members of Parliament and District Councillors.

However, most elites in Somalia disregard the self-made peace, relevant social stability, democracy and the rule of law, merely for the motive that Somalis share the same ethnicity, language, religion and cultural heritage. These folks place great emphasis on the patrilineal and clan segmentary lineage of the Somali society. On the contrary, there are independent elites who theoretically indicate that Somaliland has the right to self-determination. There arguments emphasise such theoretical foundations; for example, ‘’Democratic theory stresses the democratic right of people to govern themselves – the right of free political association; liberal theory advocates the right of the individual to determine his/her destiny; communitarian theory conversely seeks the right of self-determination in the collective. While realist approach focuses on the principle of the territorial integrity of states (Freeman 1999). Territorial justice theory advances the idea that people have the right to supremacy in their territory (Steiner 1998; Castellino 2008). Other lesser known theories of self-determination are the theory of suffering and remedial theory’’ (White 1981; Freeman 1999). Henceforth, although all theories are applicable to Somaliland’s justification of sovereignty, there are also legal, humanitarian and political cases that fully support the self-determination of Somaliland that bolster up its right of political proclamation.  

Hence, unlike any other newly recognised country such as Eritrea and South Sudan, Somaliland people can commonsensically claim that their country has the right of self-determination for several counts and reason. Moreover, the international law concurs self-determination when people experience problems of injustice, political domination and social alienation. The thirty years of the political union brought no benefit to the people of Somaliland, but conversely disadvantageous and ultimately it occasioned years of humanitarian crisis.

War made most of Somaliland’s children uneducated at the time, whilst many of them lost their lives either on fire of hostility and regime aggression against civilian population, or its consequences – the mass displacement resulted that the vulnerable elderly and children suffer diseases such as cholera, measles, tuberculosis and malnutrition. Nonetheless, in Somalia some political perpetrators still desire to do harm to the people of Somaliland. They are eager because of the increased military assistance from the international community – such a blunder could weaken the peace and stability of the region.

After liberating the country from political subjugation the people of Somaliland admit that they made a big mistake to unite with Somalia. Some blame their fathers and grandparent at the time for making this unnecessary sacrifice for their sovereignty.

In 2001, predominantly people of Somaliland voted a referendum in which 97.7% approved the aspiration of an independent sovereign nation-state. Liberty is again figured in opposition to the internal tyranny of appetites. Yet, the Government in Mogadishu discounted the results of the referendum outcome – and it wants to declare war in order to recommit genocide – a seemingly impossible task as the Somaliland’s defence capability is utmost sounded its sirens.

In other words, the very same people who became victims because of democide and the mass indiscriminate and brutal slaughter of many citizens from their own government are currently in a state of keeping careful watch for any potential danger – unification is the potential danger of today’s Somali societies. The people of Somaliland, completely believe that reunification between the Hargeisa and Mogadishu will further disgrace the political stability and social cohesion of the Somalis. 

About the Author 
Mohamed O. Hagi Mohamoud, Researcher & Political Analyst. is a A professional with extensive experience on political economy and security studies, who has the ability to use a set of interrelated tools in identifying and analysing socioeconomic and political problems of Turkey and the developing world, particularly the East Africa region. An academic fellow and reader with distinguished reputation in research that clearly delineate strategic guidance to the regional security dynamics, who also has the leadership to supervise and advocate policy programmes by identifying viable and sustainable support measures that are economically, politically, ecologically, socially and institutionally require imperative act.

After BA (Hon) and Masters Degree in Politics and International Studies at the University of Warwick, Mohamed is currently working on his PhD in Politics and Philosophy on Turkey’s Strategic Advantage in Sub-Saharan Africa: at Manchester Metropolitan University.

Disclaimer: The viewpoints expressed by the authors do not necessarily reflect the opinions, viewpoints of Somaliland Chronicle and it’s staff. 

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