Somaliland: Angry Burao Youths Storm Elders Meeting


Angry youths attack elders meetingBy: Latifa Yusuf Masai

BURAO (Somalilandsun) – A number of elders in Burao town sustained injuries after youths stormed their meeting.

An early evening elders meeting in the west of Burao came to an uneventful end after baton and sticks welding angry youths broke it up and injured a number of their seniors in the process.

The youths were angry at their elders who are from the Habaryonis clan for what they alleged were the elders machinations to parley with the administration thus oppose their demands for one of their clansman to be appointed Toghdeer regional governor.

The youths claimed that elders who had earlier in the day convened a press conference castigating and distancing themselves from a protest demonstration by the youths in Burao demanding that the government respect the UNWRITTEN code of harmonious co-existence between clans that dictates that senior posts are shared among diverse clans.

The Burao saga initialized when the incoming local council elected as mayor a councillor from the Habarchelo clan of which the Governor from too.

During the appointment of current governor, the then and now outgoing mayor was from the Habaryonis clan thus the demand by the youths that the office of governor now belongs to one of their own since the other senior post (mayor) is now the domain of the opposite clan.

The Habaryonis demands for the Toghdeer Governorship started in the Sanaag regional capital of Erigavo where a clan leader’s press conference informed the head of state that the clan was awaiting the replacement of current governor with one from their own.

The composed demands by the clan elders seems to have taken a turn for the worse with the youths in Burao taking to the streets in protest demonstrations as well as engaging in the Somali TABOO act of bashing elders,.

While the issue of who governs and from which clan is a matter for others to determine the Somalilandsun fraternity wishes to infer that elder bashing, purposely stone throwing and engaging police in running battles is no way to solve whatever grievances.

On the other hand the head of state needs to address the much acrimony that has cropped-up following the November 28th local council elections whose results raised a nationwide hue and cry.

On the issue of our focus that is the contended governorship of Toghdeer region, the buck which stops at the presidency also emanates from the presidency since that is where governors are appointed on clan basis thus the outcry by the Habaryonis should be addressed by that august office if the demands are viable and in conformity to the unwritten code of harmonious co-existence

But on the other hand what is wrong with the Habarchelo holding the office of Burao mayor and Toghdeer governor if they are competent?

At the same time I fail to understand what is wrong with members of a particular clan occupying major offices in area, I believe that if they are competent they should suffice!

What will happen if the governor of Toghdeer region is Isse and not Habarchelo or Habaryonis?

Sool region is Habrawal and that of Sahil region is Dulbahante?

By the way what is wrong with having a Warsengeli as governor of Marodi-jeeh (Hargeisa) region?

It is not only the issue of governors that warrant a rethink but that of all cadres of civil servants as the current scenario has them employed in their regions not to mention districts of origin.

Just look at the mayhem in Sayla pertaining to wrangles between the Isse and Gadabursi clans that revolve around the Isse demanding to be elected to the office of mayor while they are minority with 7 seats in the council that is dominated by the other clan which has 11 seats.

Does this mean that the Gadabursi can not make good Sayla mayors or is it that that particular office is God-given to the Isse’s?

What will happen if the Awdal regional police commander is from the Dulbahante clan?

Having embraced democratic norms the different clans in the country should start to accept results of elections even if those claiming majority in a particular area end up playing second fiddle.