As Somalis across the world begin to wake up today to Farmajo’s election victory – there is a sense of change in the air, that this time, is for real. We have been here before with the election of HE President HSM in 2012. However, this time there is a widespread euphoria of excitement across all Somali regions that, this time around, is going to be different.
It is too early to forecast Farmajo’s presidency now – but if anything is a guide, as I speak to my colleagues and cross sections of friends, the re- occurring theme is that “this is someone that cares for Somalia and can identify its enemies abroad”. I have to say based on what we have seen in his tenure as a Prime Minister, they are not far off the mark.
It was also remarkable to note that our elected MPs were receptive and pragmatic to smell the coffee for themselves despite all the real or perceived claims of corruption within the election. It was a very effective way of delivering the will of the people, which will do their credibility no harm.
On a global level one should not be surprised about the result of his election. Across many countries in the world today we have already witnessed dramatic changes and elections in USA, Philippines, Gambia, UK Brexit, France to follow – and now Somalia. Societies and nations rise and fall together through democracy and one can hope and pray for smooth transition and safe landing for Somalia.
This unstoppable wave of discontent or thirst for change against the established order is something that is profound and challenging to the established world order as we know it.
While we all excitedly welcome this change for Somalia, one should be cautious about our hopes as four-year tenure of Presidency cannot fully solve the monumental challenges facing Somalia – security, poverty, reconciliation, economic management and political fragmentation.
These above underlining conditions are what will make or break Somalia and Farmajo’s Presidency. However, we confidently sleep and wake up with a sense that, this time is different, meaningful and a step in the right direction.
Despite all the criticism you heard about HE HSM – forget it, because – under tough security, economic and political conditions he has guided Somalia to the best of his abilities and left his tenure with a dignified exit through a peaceful democratic transition. One of the hallmarks of his tenure above all, is that under his tenure Somalia has a huge international focus/exposure, diaspora is returning in their droves with investment and ideas. One can only thank him and his administration for paving the way for this enhanced confidence on Somalia. A strong legacy the new Administration can further enhance and with it, build a better future for Somalia.
For now, we must stop the fixation with negative politics and let the new Administration settle and build a cohesive and prosperous future for Somalia: We all have a role in this humble endeavour as our destiny is shared and is at cross-roads.
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