Somaliland: Why is the Fourth Kulmiye Party Chair Position Held by VP Sayli the only Contested One?


Somalilandsun: In the run-up  to the ruling  KULMIYE party national Conference, which is scheduled to take place in early October 2020 incumbent office holders have expressed interest in retaining their seats.

According to the party’s rules, the congress will elect the party’s five-year leadership including the executive committee and members of the central committee.

Big names expressing interest in either retaining senior seats or contesting for them include

  1. President Muse Bihi Abdi who wants to retain his seat as party chairman
  2. Interior Minister Mohamed Kahin Ahmed is running for the post of First Deputy Chairman which he currently holds
  3. Hussein Aden Adde who wants to retain his position as party’s third vice chairman
  4. Vice president Abdirahman Sayli who is the fourth chairperson which he wants to retain
  5. Minister of Trade and Industry   Mohamed Hassan Sa’ad Sajin and
  6. (Not yet ascertained factually) Agriculture Minister Ahmed Mumin Seeth both of whom are challenging the VP for position of party’s fourth chairperson

The amount of money required from the candidates is $ 10,000 each for the deputy chair Candidates and $ 15,000 for the KULMIYE Party Candidate Candidates. All paid by the above six politicians.

The only person declaring intent but his candidacy fee refused is politician and former minister Ibrahim Qabo who wanted to challenge interior minister as second party chair.

Now that the period allocated for candidates to register has expired it is evidently clear that the three top positions are a foregone conclusion since nobody else has shiwn any interest apart from the incumbents.

This makes the fourth Party chair position held by VP Sayli for over a decade the only one contested by three individuals who ironically are all from the same Awdal region thence clansmen.

So what makes the VP held party seat attractive to two of his clansmen who are also senior cabinet ministers in the government led by President Bihi?

This issue has raised questions within the populace leading to heated discussions everywhere.But first to Ibrahim Qabo whose candidacy is now out the wind but refuses to bow out silent thus levelling vicious attacks at the Kulmiye party organizing committee which he accused of operating under external coercion. Back to VP Sayli whose is now running against two Awdalities namely minister of Trade Minister Mohamed Hassan Sa’ad Sajin and Agriculture Minister Ahmed Mumin Seed.

The two ministers were not former members of the KULMIYE party, and the Minister of Commerce first caught the eye of the public when President Bihi appointed him as a minister, while Minister Seed also joined the KULMIYE party when he defected from the opposition Wadani party.According to party rules any person serving as minister in the Kulmiye administration joins the party top organ.

Somaliland: Kulmiye Party Leadership Posturing, the Mahmud Hashi Candidacy
Kulmiye party women’s wing receives president Bihi at the ruling party’s Hqs in Hargeisa

Some analysts believe that   the reason for Sayli’s seat attracting much interest is that the relationship between President Bihi and the vice president is not good, but there are no known differences between the two officials, and some elders in Hargeisa have started a movement to seek the president thence convince him to deter any contest for the Sayli held seat

On the other hand, the people of Awdal region, where the vice president hails from, are also asking themselves about this issue, as some in the Awdal community believe that these two ministers are being pushed by someone to compete with their clansmen and Somaliland vice president. This is not the first time for Sayli to face challenge for one of his two positions in the party namely 4th chair and Vice president but it is the first emanating from his region.The first was during contest for party nomination as candidate for Somaliland VP in the last presidential elections of 2018.

A stiff challenge was put by then health minister Dr Isse Haglatosie who hails from Sool region in the east only to be derailed by former president Ahmed Silanyo.If it was for the president’s intervention many believe Dr Haglatosie would today be VP in the country.In the run-up to this challenge the VP known to be weak in dealing with pressure from peers was known to have been in turmoil at the presidency then under the stewardship of former powerful minister Hirsi Haji Ali.

The VP regularly complaining that the powerful presidency minister had usurped his powers and authority was quoted on a couple of times as pursuing resignation.

This matter and the perpetual pursuit of the Somaliland Vice presidency and Kulmiye 4th chairmanship have put to question his leadership of the AWDAL region.Why would one want to only serve perpetually as VP while the top post is on sight many Awdalities question.

Why would the VP bow down to Muse Bihi thus acquiesce to serve him as VP having held the office for over seven years under president Silanyo .

Former Somaliland health minister Dr. Suleiman Isse Ahmed Haglatosie almost dislodged Sayli from his perch

According to many Awdalities this is a major weakness in the VP thence the hot contest for his slot at the party which if he loses automatically removed him from vying for the vice president if his boss president Bihi decides on vying for a second term.

All in all the push to remove Sayli from the national and AWDAL region political scene be engineered by whoever has been in the offing for a long time by many who want a strong leader for their community.

So will president Bihi follow his predecessor Silanyo and support Sayli, if he does then it is smooth sailing but if he keeps off to let democracy play it’s part then it’s surely BYE BYE Sayli the perpetual Somaliland Vice president

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