Somalilandsun: The defection of Four soldiers from the Somali National Army to the Somaliland Army has been termed as a major blow to the Mogadishu based federal government, its military and union policy
At a function broadcast live from the Army Headquarters in Hargeisa four Somali national army soldiers pleaded pardon from the people and government of Somaliland “for having owed allegiance to Somalia as well as service to its military” as they revealed that they have defected from their service with the army in Mogadishu.
“This is your country and military” said the Somaliland army Commander, Brigadier General Abdirizak Afgadud who was part of a team of senior officers at the event.
The four are Turkey and US Trained Somalia Army Officers, 1st Lieutenant Jabir Ismail Osman, 1st Lieutenant Mahmud Ahmed Ali and 1st Lieutenant Yusuf Mohamed Jama from Danab Brigade and Private Mohamed Hassan Hashi from Gorgor (The Eagles) battalion which are foreign trained Somalia army’s Elite.
Claiming to have been brainwashed and regretted the move join the Somali military as done by the other three 1st Lt Jabir Ismail Osman said that he shall serve his country with diligence while urging local youth to desist from lure to Mogadishu by those who still clinging to the notion of a the resurrection of the defunct greater Somalia republic through Somaliland reuniting with Somalia
“Though we, erroneously, served the Somalia national army for years in the capacity of highly trained special ops officers, commandos, it was not long that it was made clear that were citizens of Somaliland thus to be treated badly” said 1st Lieutenant Mahmud Ahmed Ali as he revealed that he was Officer in charge communication and public relations for the 16th Battalion Danab (special forces unit) brigade.
“Regrettably I served with distinction in the Somalia army thence allegiance to a greater Somalia which is contrary to the very being of Somaliland” said 1st Lieutenant Yusuf Mohamed Jama also from the crack Danab Brigade” as he proclaimed his unwavering loyalty to the Republic of Somaliland.
“Now that am fully grown I have realized that Somaliland is my home and I hereby announce that I have defected from the Somali Army which I served as commando at its Gorgor (The Eagles) battalion” said Private Mohamed Hassan Hashi while revealing that he was trained both in Somalia and Turkey
While displaying identity cards and other testimonials of the four former Somalia army officers the Somaliland army commander described the surrender as a big blow for Somalia, its military and union policy.
Upon welcoming “Our boys back” and congratulating them for recanting allegiance to Somalia, Brig General Afgadud informed that the four soldiers have been absorbed into the Somaliland army in their current status and with immediate effect.
The Danab Brigade “Lightning Brigade”) is a highly trained Somali National Army infantry/commando force which was established in in February 2014 with its base at the Baledogle Airfield, in Walaweyn District, Lower Shabelle.
Entirely sponsored by US-government the Special Ops elite unit has developed a reputation as Somalia’s most professional fighting for through trainginbg by Bancroft Global Development, a private military contractor. It was Bancroft personnel who set up Danab, and continue to train and advise the unit. Bancroft personnel are not necessarily American ― many are South African, British and European ― and are, therefore, not bound by the same rules of engagement as the US military.
Gorgor (The Eagles) battalion” is also a skilled counterterrorism commando unit trained by the Turkish Defense force at the country’s Counterterrorism Training and Exercise Center in the southwestern province of Isparta.
With their caliber of the four former Somalia army officers, their oath o allegiance to the Republic of Somaliland and its defence forces the defection has surely hurt the federal government authorities in Mogadishu where it hurts most, having one recant the notion of a greater Somalia republic
Somaliland, officially known as the Republic of Somaliland, was the 13th nation to become independent in Africa by a Royal proclamation of her majesty Queen Elizabeth II on June 26, 1960.
This independence was short-lived because of its unification with Somalia to form the Somali Republic, envisioning to also encompass other Somali territories in the Horn of Africa to create the Greater Somali Republic.
The concept of Greater Somalia extends back to the beginning of the 20th century, and the idea was to unite all Somali-speaking nations, comprising regions in which ethnic Somalis live or historically inhabited. This covered Somaliland, Somalia, and Djibouti and also the Northeastern Province of Kenya and the current Somali state of Ethiopia.
That dream failed to work when Djibouti became independent and decided not to join the Somali Republic.
Somaliland and Somalia had differences at that time as a result of injustice and despotism over Hargeisa, which triggered atrocities against the people of Somaliland in which a 250,000 people died and their cities were leveled to the ground by the Somali forces.
This led to the emergence of a group of students, business people, former civil servants, and former politicians to form the Somali National Movement, which then turned into an armed liberation front that defeated the dictatorial regime.
On May 18, 1991, the people of Somaliland decided to withdraw from the union, reclaim their independence and rebuild their own country through a homegrown peace-building process and a hybrid state formation system. This became the beginning of a significant success story in Africa and the building block of a democratic nation.
Personal identification documents surrendered by the four officers