Somalia: Concerns Raised Over Ex-Jubaland Militia’s Presence in Kenya

Mandera, Kenya — Earlier this month, Jubbaland President Ahmed Madobe appointed a new governor for the Gedo region which has been the epicentre of a multi-faceted political dispute.

Madobe named Abdullahi Abdi Jama as the governor of the Gedo region, while Osman Noor Haji Moalimou became his deputy on security and politics, and Nasteh Ahmed was assigned to serve as the deputy governor of finance.

Last week, a plane carrying the new administration was allegedly denied landing rights at Garbaharey airstrip.

On Saturday, the VOA Somali reported that the political tension has been rising since Abdullahi Farmajo, the immediate former president of Somalia, left the office in mid-last year.

In a joint statement by Jubbaland’s First Vice-president, members of the Cabinet Steering Committee and members of the Jubbaland Legislative Assembly, the leaders condemned the rising tension in the area.

“A group of politicians with ulterior motives have lately been trying to make the Gedo region ungovernable and we would not accept it,” said Ibrahim Ogle, the Jubbaland Interior minister.

He added that the group have been circulating a piece of fake news against the newly appointed administration and the situation in the area.

Ogle further stated that almost all the leaders representing the Gedo region in both the Federal and local level government are supporting the establishment of the new administration.

“Jubbaland has 25 members of the assembly from Gedo, a Vice President and 17 members in the Cabinet. At the Federal level, 98 percent of the elected leaders are behind Ahmed Madobe and his appointment of new administration and commissioners for Gedo Region,” Ogle noted.

“The politicians serving the interest of the former president won’t be allowed to deny the people of Gedo a chance to get an administration that is led and served by the residents. The administration is there to cater for their rights to basic social services. They had their time and there’s nothing to show for it. This is our time and we have the mandate to serve what the people expect of us,” Ogle said.

A former militia leader and one of the figures suspected to be behind the impeding armed conflict is alleged to be spending nights in Mandera town amid reports that he’s spearheading the destabilisation plan in Gedo Region.

Among the team leaders are a Nairobi-based lawyer, a Kenyan Senator and a former Jubbaland Interior minister.