By Ali Mohamed

Lewis Center, Ohio—-Last week, the speaker shut down the Somaliland parliament after a group of legislators loyal to the Silanyo/Hirsi administration challenged his leadership position. Mr. Erro, a former civil servant, was elected the speaker of the parliament in 2005, not on the merit of his political skills or policy expertise but because he was willing to advance the political agenda of then candidate Silanyo. The current Parliament shutdown is a crisis that he created because of his poor leadership.

The Parliament Erro has been presiding never checked the massive corruptions, power abuses and the excess of former Riyaale administration and the current Silanyo/Hirsi administration. The speaker has made the parliament a rubber stamp legislature body. Whatever legislative agenda, the special interest groups both domestic and foreign demanded such as communications banking, and piracy, were passed without any hearings or debates. He also allowed President Silanyo to open a dialogue with a fictional Somali government. But the greatest failure of Erro’s leadership was making the Parliament of Somaliland as an extension of Silanyo/Hirsi administration.

The speaker, not only made the legislative body insignificant, but he also abandoned his fulltime job—managing effectively the legislature. Instead, he was very busy organizing his own political party “The Orange party” and spent most of the time travelling overseas and fundraising activities.

Now, after he failed to bring together 42 legislators that could save his job, and the imminent demise of his leadership position; he chose to close the parliament’s business. Moreover, he is also asking Somaliland elders to rescue from him the political onslaught of his former political allies.

It would set a wrong precedence, if the elders get involved in the leadership race of another co-equal or more powerful legislative body, as some members of the upper house are trying to torpedo the selection of the speaker. Since Mr. Erro started the current “political circus”, in the first place, after he sucked his deputies in a simple majority vote, I do not see why the rules for electing the speakership post should be changed now.

It is in people’s interest for the political process to work, without any interference and arm twisting from outside groups. I also believe the Somaliland parliament has rules and procedure to select the leadership positions. The speaker has responsibility to follow, protect and respect those rules and its outcomes, even, if that would mean him losing speakership. Somaliland people expect their legislators to behave like adults and take responsibility for their own actions.

Lately, some Voters are dissatisfied with the way the President is the running the country. President Silanyo has also borrowed a page from Obama playbook: promise anything and everything people desire with no realistic way of paying for it. For example, the president Silanyo and his chief engineer Hirsi recently promised to Somaliland public for the construction of a 350 km long highway , which connecting Burao to Erigavo, without explaining to them how much the project would cost and how the government is going paying for it. Of course, that highway and many other infrastructure developments are desperately needed in
Somaliland. I have to say; we do not live in fantasy world where you could spend money that you do not have it.

But the voters who want a new leader to emerge in 2015 presidential election, have serious reservations whether Mr. Erro–who has political aspiration to become the next leader of Somaliland– has what it takes build a coalition to win the election because of his failure to lead the parliament. His parliament has not passed any major legislation for the last nine years, dealing with such important issues: Taxes, land reform, water, security, and foreign policy.

The Speaker is a decent man, who deeply cares about our country; however, he is not ready yet and has no record of legislative accomplishment to lead the country. I would like to challenge Erro supporters, if they could name any major piece of legislation Erro passed for the last decade that benefited the struggling Somalilanders.

Finally, President Silanyo would leave a good legacy for the country, if he should not seek for re-election in 2015, for obvious reasons. Instead, the remaining time of his term in office, he should concentrate more on presiding a smooth and transparent nominating process for selecting Kulmiye’s party candidate for the upcoming presidential polls, holding a credible elections, without any delaying tactic or term extension, and most importantly, transferring the power peacefully( Often a difficult task for emerging democracies).

Anything less would be a disaster for Somaliland.

Ali Mohamed is co-founder of the Horn of Africa Freedom Foundation, a grass roots organization located in Lewis Center, Ohio, that advocates for the advancement of freedom and democratic values for the indigenous people of the Horn of Africa. He can be reached


  1. Cirro is ok and a great statesman and cool policy lawmaker/ex diplomat.
    the unrecognized sl would be in serious clandestine if cirro had to play dirty
    politics. as first chief speaker of the parliament and chairman of wadani
    the guy was/is cool minded and shows the right charisma to deal with
    all affairs diligently to satisfy the countries national security and stability.
    the parliamentary elections are not far off now and for the sake of the sl
    peace and stability, a change of cirro at this stage is seen as counterproductive.
    the same goes for gaal'nur of the guurti.

  2. I only agree with the title of this opinion piece. I think this problem must be solved through normal procedure of the house of parliament and through MPs' votes. Yes, they can agree through traditional mediation outside the parliamentary chambers, but the finally the constitution must be respected. The conflict of interest issue must be solved once and for all through a legislation and not by traditional mediation.

  3. If Irro is not ready to lead and Silanyo's leadership is already in question or being ineffective, I wonder what would be the alternative. Oh! I almost forgot about it. we should bring back Riyale and his likes into the mix then everything will be hunky dory.

  4. Ciro waxuu ku degdegay waxaanuu sharciga dhigeen ADUUNKANA LAMA ARAG GUDOOMIYE XUSBIOO AH GUDOOMIYE BARLAMAAN. ayaadoo Kulmiye u ogaalaadeen inuu gudoomiye ahaado asagoonan ka yimid xusbi aad u yar ayuu shirgudoonka afgabi taasoo ku noqotey sun. Labada Gudoomiye xigeen Dr Ali Yuusuf iyo Baase waxey ku sameeyey wax aad iyo aad dhirbaaxo aanuu kasoo kaban. Hadana sharaf dhac ku ah Gudoomiye Ciro waayo waxuu soo kordhiyey ma jirto aan ka aheen in xilkiisii uu sii wiiqmo labada gudoomiyena si SHARAFLEH ay xoog iyo karti ku muquuriyaan ciro.

  5. Who is your favoruite, Mr Ali, if Cirro is not ready to lead and Siilaanyo leadership is in question, as Osman qaal said? It would be interesting to know.

    • Kuluc: pay no attention to these miscreants. They are just jealous of Eroh for clanish reasons. These are people who only care about villains like Siilaanyo. They don't care about Somaliland but are only interested in clan superiority and domination. Siilaanyo or his ilks have no history of leading a nation and today we see where they have lead us. We are in the brink of tribal clashes. As you already know Siilaanyo drew a red line in Burao officially dividing the city into two clans.

  6. Ali Mohamed, the author, claims he is the founder of Horn of Africa Freedom Foundation but does this foundation exist. The answer is no. This is a bogus and non-existent foundation solely used to give him a sort of legitimacy. Well known in Columbus,Ohio, as a former Siilaanyo supporter and now out of favor after failing to secure a high ranking job (minister) with Siilaanyo. The author's dim view of Eroh is unfounded and heresy.
    Eroh an MBA holder of Albany school of business and a career diplomat has successfully resolved the parliamentary dispute to the satisfaction of the populace and forcing warlord Siilaanyo to accept those terms. Through determination, skill and diplomacy Eroh achieved this on his own using diplomatic skills to have the Guurti deliberate it independently. Under his leadership Somaliland parliament was successful and deliberative in its legislative achievements. To those who are complaining why Eroh is holding both the chairmanship of Wadani and the parliament I would say this is because it is allowed by our constitution and second we need his unflinching leadership and problem solving experience unlike warlord Siilaanyo who can not lead but only engage in divisive issues. Siilaanyo lead us to divide into tribes and sub tribes. He drew a red line in Burao dividing the city into East and West where no tribe crosses to the other. Siilaanyo only wants to rape our resources and all contracts are given to his henchmen of his own clan.

  7. Abdi,
    As far as I know politicians must prove themselves through patriotism and honesty. Silanyo has indeed shown a great deal of both. He initiated development improvement plans from get go: He
    A) increase the wages of our men and women in uniforms,
    B) built multiples roads in the western regions and now began to build 350 KM motorway between Burao and Erigavo
    C) Bloomed the nation budget by 10X fold in the first yr he took office through accountability
    D) Put Somaliland on the map, secured borders and chose the right people for the right positions
    E) Weeded out the dead woods on the government payrolls
    F)Improved our international relation in Africa and overseas
    G) Open the gates widely for deep pocked international actors to invest in Somaliland
    H) Allowed local elections in anticipation to face-lift the federal political parties so very region gets an equal footing in politics. oops, That did not work out. at least he tried
    The list is endless, however, my point is clear. You don't have to agree with me but the facts are undisputable. If you would rebuttal as to why Silanyo owns a property in England. The answer is no-brainer….anyone can own a real estate in anywhere, especially in the developed world as long as the mortgage is paid upon agreed terms. Essentially, nobody pays cash on property in the west because purchasing a property on cool cash only ties up a liquid asset unnecessarily.

    • Siilaanyo's indisputable history is as follows:
      1. Swindled £500,000 from SNM Coffers purchasing his first home with help from Dhiigshiil.
      2. Divided SNM senior military officers into Red flag and white flag groups.
      3. Became a warlord in 1992 when he forced HJ ministers to withdraw from Abdirahman Tuur and Hassan Essa's first post SNM civilian government.
      4. Was the first presidential candidate to introduce absolute tribal loyalty by holding exclusive meeting with his clan at Garadag. What kind of a leader will say I want my clan loyalty first. Clan loyalty results in advancing the interests of the clan before the interest of the nation. That is a fact any 7 year old understands. It is exactly what he is doing now showering his clan with contracts for road construction, airport construction etc. Fired government employees and filled their positions with HJ illiterate youth who only know how to swindle like their uncle. It is why the minister of finance is complaining we are not getting enough taxes from Burao. Where does Burao's taxes go?
      5. Turned our foreign affairs into a joke by describing our genocide as atrocity.
      6.Fired the man (Engineer Mohamed Hashi) who engineered the doubling of public employee salaries.
      7. Gave Ibrahim 20% of Oodweyne block.
      8. Divided Burao with a red line into East and West with its tribes not crossing into each other.
      9. Gave Genel contracts to his country men. The list is endless but I will stop here for now.

      • I still don't see any facts at sight besides your own version of very subjective stories. You're just angry at your current leader for no logical reasons. It doesn't bother me though a bit because he's your president as much as he's mine.

  8. cirro created the trap for him self when he know's that there is no single member of parliament from his party and he surpoted silanyo to extend the parliament election now he is in trouble there is no wadani mp's to save him. if you can't see what is coming and you are running for president then you are in trouble and the country is in trouble too.
    cirro he love his speaker seat but he should plan for the good all three new party's to run for parliamentary election so he can have wadani and ucid mps to save him or he is trouble and prepare to sneef goat milk through his nose.