HARGEISA, 15 March 2010 (Somalilandpress) – It was a sunny morning; I went to Crown Hotel in the west side of Hargeisa. I had, in that place, an appointment with Ali Gulaid (may Allah bless him).
It was now fifteen minutes before the appointment time. I sat in one of the huts in the hotel and asked a waiter walking there in my sight to get a cup of lipton tea and a small bottle of water for me. As I was sitting for a while, I saw a well-dressed, tall and slim man with a cow-boy-like hat, a black paper file and an eye glass. He was now stepping towards me. Because, he did not see me before, I stood up with an open face and a smiling to show him that I am the one with whom he had the appointment.
We shook the hands gently. As we greeted each other and were about to sit down, three men came us and greeted Ali. They had a joke with him. One of the men told Ali that he heard Ali’s father to joke a something, which Ali and the men all laughed at. The man added that Ali’s father was very social and compassionate.
After the men left us, we kept on our conversation. I at first briefed him on my education and how I am going to shape my academic future. I handed over the outline and contents of my research paper to him. He took his eye glass which at that time lied on the table and had a glance at it. He focused on the technicality and the coherence of the paper. He rejoiced saying to me ‘this is the standard of writing a final year paper’. Ali did not expect that students in the local universities could write such a proper, well-mannered paper. (By this I do not mean that my paper was perfect but on the contrary, it was a common paper that is written by any ordinary pupil)
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Getting down to the gist of my article, I could today say that my remembrance of Ali Gulaid results from the fiscal time of 2010 in which the central government still did not submit its budget to the parliament for approval. Ali Gulaid (may Allah bless him) used to portray a scientific analysis and critique about the Rayale’s administration financial plans. One of the notable remarks, he used to demonstrate was the failure of the government to come up with responsive and workable national budget through which it can develop the nation and respond to the socio-economic needs of Somaliland. To quote Ali’s last 2009 Budget Critique: The revenue of any budget is an educated guess based upon projections of the current, past and of course the future economic conditions. When the revenue to be received is estimated, the expenditure is decided upon the needs. In this stage of determining the expenditure to be incurred, prioritization of the existing needs is an important factor. This professional and conventional practice does not appear in minister Awil’s proposal.
It is obvious from this 2009 government budget that there are misstatements and intended errors. It is not only this year but every year there are many errors and deceptions in the budget. For example, the people with disabilities and orphans of SNM veterans are allocated for an impossible amount which is not given to them. The allocations for the presidential palace utility expenses and the industry society trainings are counterfeit (see below for more description) Therefore, I will hereby analyzing the Rayale’s Administration Budget Proposal to the parliament. What critique could be made against it? It is reflecting from the national socio-economic needs? It is correct, complete, consistent and accurate?
Let us eventually ask my precious readers, who is to fill the gap, and keep the constructive criticism on in order to awake our unorganized government? Is it suitable to leave this indispensable practice alone and forget about telling those who are in charge of handling our interests about our needs? Are there not heroes who are committed to take that responsibility over his/her shoulders?
I am sure that there uncountable number of intellectuals and heroes like Ali who have the same feelings and patriotism. I believe that heroes never die. By this I do mean, the state of heroism lasts for ever.
Saeed Mohamed Ahmed
Views expressed in the opinion articles are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of the editorial