Somalia Prime Minister Hamza Abdi Barre granted more time to form govt

Somalia's parliament on Monday agreed to give Prime Minister Hamza Abdi Barre more time to form a government a month after his appointment in the troubled Horn of Africa nation.

MOGADISHU — Somalia’s parliament on Monday agreed to give Prime Minister Hamza Abdi Barre more time to form a government a month after his appointment in the troubled Horn of Africa nation.

Barre was originally expected to appoint a cabinet within 30 days of his June 25 nomination, but said the delays were due to the country’s lengthy electoral process, which culminated in the election of Hassan Sheikh Mohamud as president in May.

“To form a (…) balanced government, it is necessary that I spend sufficient time in consultation with the various politicians in the country and civil society,” Barre said in a statement released on Monday.

Observers have expressed hope that Mohamud’s presidency will mark the end of a political crisis that toppled the regime of his predecessor, Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, better known as Farmajo, and threatened to plunge Somalia back into a violent chaos.

Barre pledged to form a government within 10 days of parliament approving the extension.

“The prime minister asked for a 10-day extension and it seemed credible because…the prime minister is colluding with other stakeholders,” Mohamed Dhabancad, one of the MPs, told reporters.

The new government will face a number of challenges, including an impending famine and a grueling Islamist insurgency.

A crippling drought in the Horn of Africa has left some 7.1 million Somalis – almost half the population – battling hunger and more than 200,000 at risk of starvation, according to the UN.

Al-Qaeda affiliate Al-Shabaab continues to flex its muscles as it launches deadly attacks, underscoring the difficult task ahead of the country’s new rulers.

The militants were driven out of the capital Mogadishu by an African Union force in 2011, but they still control swaths of land and frequently attack civilian and military targets.

  • AFP
RosGwen24 News
RosGwen24 News
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