Hargeisa, 21 July 2009 (Somalilandpress) – Somaliland succeeded to hold together by the observance of tribal balance. Huwan entity was a melting pot representing the Somali nation as a whole and was a symbol of inspiration and national empowerment. While other Somali territories’ caved-in to imperialistic bullying and misdirection, Somaliland stayed stead fast on the Somali traditional course.

The SNL- USP coalition that spearheaded the independence reflects the true tribal balance that can work for Somaliland statehood and brotherhood. Egal-Riyaale ticket represents the continuation of this balance. That is why, despite all odds Somaliland is still going strong.

The upcoming presidential election is characterized by kilkenny cat fighting stigma, namely:

1. Negatively pugnacious tactics of public opinion mobilization as if fighting an alien monster or Dracula.

2. “TOLA-AYEY” threats and warnings galore.

3. Bad mouthing and accusations are below the belt.

4. Muscle flexing ultimatums snipe left and right. Such super tribe posturing could be counter productive.

5. The hot chair fever is a common ailment at all fronts and is a “must win” venture. Ousting the incumbent under tribal duress would end up in retaliatory eventuality.

6. While the upcoming election is Presidential and Presidential only, the bottomless mudslinging spree makes no exceptions and encompasses the totality of state leadership.

7. When ethics and decorum are stripped from election campaigns and their outcome, anarchy is let loose to take charge.

8. It is easy to talk and act irresponsibly, but going overboard could lead to disastrous consequences. The fashionable TOLA-AYEY syndrome, could turn ugly at the end of the day.

9. The “hot chair” fits one person and one person only, but Somaliland can cater for all, irrespective of who is who. National integrity and stability is sacred.

10. “TOLA-AYEY” went too far in disturbing the public odium. It might, by design or default disrupt the peace, stability, and social tranquility: the trump card qualities that Somaliland cannot lose.

For the record, two of the franchised political parties clubbed together, to deny the Dhulbahante, with all its tribal and humanitarian weight, the traditional quota of the Speaker of the House. Consequently, the Dhulbahante today is an auxiliary of “Ucid” . Ironically, while “Ucid” is a denomination with no tangible parameters, yet it is constitutionally public politician number one, public attorney number one, and public speaker number one. Superseding, in the process, the tribes and the traditional leaders, the national elite and, indeed all those who matter in public opinion making of Somaliland. Because of these diminishing factors, with no rhyme or rhythm, the bulk of Dhulbahante and Warsangeli tribes rebelled. Others might follow suit if victimized, in the same manner, by the laughable legal loopholes in the non-inclusive constitution. The constitution was a temporary filling, originally envisaged as an emergency prerogative of the Founding Father, President Mohamed I Egal upon his election by unanimous tribal consensus in Borama, to reconstruct Somaliland, of his dream, along state like structural institutions.

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The absurd audacity of tribal affiliations masqueraded as political parties to endeavor disfranchising the tribal pillars of Somaliland like the Dhulbahante, who cleansed Somaliland from colonization and Christianity roots in their Darwishade(crusade) against the British, is myopic maangaabnimo( will-o’-wisp)!! It was their gallantry and unwavering tenacity in keeping the impetus of the war for two decades that earned the metaphor “Somalis are the Irish men of Africa.”

Chronological brief

The British were in Somaliland for seventy years, broken down as follows:

• Towards the end of the 19th century, the British signed protection treaties with all Somaliland tribes except with Dhulbahante. The corner stone of these treaties was that the British cannot and would not transfer Somali territory to any foreign power, and that they would protect the territorial integrity and brotherhood of the Somali people.

• At the beginning of the 20th century, the Dhulbahante were fighting the British in darwishade (crusade) wars for twenty one years. Result: the Christian missionaries abandoned their presence in Dhaymoole settlement in the Guban area of the Berbera District. Furthermore, Somaliland was recognized as a protectorate rather then a colony like Aden.

• From 1920-1945 a limbo period in which the British were recovering from world war 1 damages and focusing on the 2nd world war. Ina Igare a Kenyan Somali from H.Y belonging was the interim proxy for the British Empire.

• 1945-1952 the Dhulbahante were an autonomous entity under Court Akil administration. The British presence was confined to a District Comissioner who executed the decisions of the Court Akil, composed of all Dhulbahante leadership.

• In early 40’s Haji Omer Amay, a Dhulbahante tribal leader of high standing, was assassinated in Burao by H.Y tribe elements. Burao was at the time a district for Dolb, H.Y, H.T, Essa Musa.

• The British offered the Dolb tribe the Ber village, twenty eight miles southward, to be their district in lieu of Burao. Incidentally, Garad Jama Garad Ali was crowned in Ber village which was Dolb grazing territory at the time.

By tribal intrigue the British were convinced to seat the Dolb. District in Nugal area. That is how the Dolb were pushed back 160 miles southward to Las-Anod.

• In 1950 Sir Gerald Reece was appointed as the Governor of Somaliland. He introduced the local authority status, leading to eventual independence. This option legalized the inclusion of the Dolb into the protection bandwagon.

• In 1955 the Hawd Reserved Area were transferred to Ethiopia. National uprising ensued, and in the process the National United Front (N.U.F) was instituted to fight for the cause.

• The N.U.F fought on the platform that “part of the Commonwealth was transferred to a foreign power”. This was seen as a betrayal of the Somali cause, since the term of Commonwealth could give legitimacy to the British action.

Most Somali Landers withdrew support from the N.U.F, under Michael Mariano, and in fluxed into the Somali National League (S.N.L) under the leadership of M.I.Egal, a wealthy business man from the great tribe of Habr Awal.

• In 1959, the British expressed preparedness to concede independence and closer association with Somalia, if Somaliland so desired.

• In early 1960 the SNL and the United Somali Party(U.S.P) formed the coalition that lead the independence and unconditional union with the south forming the Somali Republic.

This coalition was based on equal footing. The ministerial portfolio was divided in equal equation. That is how Somaliland came into being as an independent nation of equal destiny through thick and thin. Equality breads brotherhood and statehood.

In this defining moment Somaliland must be real.

We came a long way and can’t risk taking time by its tail and upsetting the balance. The traditional practice of tribal balance works. No questions asked!!

Mohamed Khawi
Somaliland natives Association

Views expressed in the opinion articles are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of the editorial


  1. Ok we get it, some more of Tolayeey anaga oo Dhulbahante Darwiish ah stuff SSH or SSC or Darwiishland do you people think at all, you were and are a minority clan and the will of the majority will always prevail in Somaliland. You want to be in Somalia, simply move to Garowe!