Even as we demand full recognition of Somaliland by Kenya, Ethiopia and international community, we also plead with Somaliland to treat all its commercial partners with equality, not preferring one to the other-Munya
Somalilandsun- The governor of Kenya’s Meru country Peter Munya has requested the Somaliland government to lift trade barriers that have hindered the sale of Miraa in the country.
Mr Munya said he has been in the country for three days where he held talks with the Deputy President Abdurrahman Ishmael, the foreign affairs minister and finance minister in the capital city of Hargeisa.
Speaking at Ambaru Primary School in Igembe North on Wednesday, Mr Munya said 99 per cent of the miraa sold in Somaliland comes from Ethiopia, despite Meru producing a higher quality crop.
He said miraa from Kenya, which is highly preferred there, is charged 300 per cent duty while the Ethiopian miraa is charged 100 per cent duty making it impossible for fair competition.
“In my deliberations with top government officials, I managed to convince the government to appoint a technical committee to review the duty in exchange of some form of recognition of the Republic of Somaliland by the Kenyan Government,” Mr Munya as he revealed that he is in earnest search for Miraa Market in the Unrecognized Country
At the same time Koigi Wamwere a Kenya politician and human rights activist who visited Somaliland recently argues that the economic crisis in Meru County that results from Kenyan miraa ban in Somalia in retaliation for the closure of the Dabaab Refugee Camp as well as in the UK, and the European Union is a golden opportunity for Hargeisa diplomatically.
“Already Somaliland accommodates and protects within her borders 9, 000 Kenyans who include teachers, nurses, doctors, engineers, consultants and others whose interests need a Kenyan embassy to take care of. Yet an embassy will not be possible without diplomatic recognition of Somaliland by Kenya” writes Wamwere adding that
having been a colony of Britain, Somaliland is historically closer to Kenya than Somalia that was an Italian colony when Kenya was also a British colony but More fundamentally, Kenya should recognize Somaliland because both nations reject the dream of greater Somalia which Somalia has yet to renounce though it threatens border integrity of both Somaliland from whose conquest she seeks to escape and Kenya which supports her diplomatically. From this point of view, it is to the strategic interests of Kenya to give diplomatic recognition to Somaliland and certainly a diplomatic error not to recognize her whose nationhood is a reality that cannot be wished away?
Read the Koigi Wamwere piece titled More trade with Kenya would win Somaliland recognition