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Somalia claims sovereignty over Ogaden, an ethnically Somali region of far eastern Ethiopia. In 1977 Somalia invaded Ogaden in an attempt to annex it, but Somali forces were defeated by the Ethiopian army in 1978. Ethiopia and Somalia signed a peace accord in 1988 but Somalia did not renounce its claim to the region.

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GAASHAAN COLUMN
In response to PuntWatch's press release of the 24th of May 2001.
Syed, Ahmed Gashan
ajgashan@hotmail.com

Published: May 30, 2001

Would you believe it? It is Mr (Please check here) himself again camouflaged in yet another frontage in PuntWatch continuously executing his ungodly conduct of despondently attempting to alight ablaze from afar in an environment which in the eyes of the less agile appear fragile and easily inflammable.

I am sorry to have to disappoint those who entertain such appalling frame of mind, but the diligent, law-abiding Puntlanders and their representatives in Puntland State of Somalia have formed an indestructible, eternal partnership with clear cohesion, long-turn State building plan and are in the process of implementing institution building strategic scheme in compliance with the State's constitution put in place at the inception of the State, which are surely what Mr (Please click here) et al are lacking in their prose and approach. Their accord is one based on honesty, trust and comradeship that was borne out of years of destitution, adversity coupled with tragedy; therefore less judicious scrutiny of the political situation on the ground verbalised around rumours obtained through the grapevine is hardly probable to obstruct the progress they long for, nor disrupt the peace and harmony they so gallantly fought for.

One must not discount the actuality that Puntland came about as a result of the disentanglement of the social continuation, extrication of societal values compounded by the tragic civil war that ensued after decades of "divide and rule" style of governance inherited from the European vagabonds, suppression of one's civilian, constitutional rights and liberties by the then military regime with the assistance of insincere pseudo-chieftains forging shifty alliances by the break of the day with whomever is deemed to possess wherewithal so as to line up their deep pockets not to mention personalities so skilled in the art of "divide and rule" all in their stride to derail significant attempts for revitalization. One would have thought that the young and learnt generations would have learnt from past experience and from the failure of previous generations to defy rules of this nature and break away from exercising practices of similar nature in the hope of rescuing the ever-so-forgiving Puntlanders. What is so poignant is that such philosophy had not pass away with its proponents of the sixties, rather had been carried forward in the young in yet another format; hence Mr (Please click here)'s misdeeds, misconduct and antagonistic approach in his writings as regards to the present political situation in Puntland.

And as tragic as it might seem, it has been witnessed over the past few years a new political war battled out on the information highway in the use of new less chivalrous vernacular where few ill-advised persons claiming to represent clique so and so engage in acts of denunciation and condemnation of their respective administrations to the extent of astonishingly making a mockery of the whole concept of representation, stance for the welfare of the community and preservation of the traditional, communal standards. If I were to look at PuntWatch's press release "The People of Puntland Have Spoken Loudly In Unison" of the 24th of May 2001 in relation to a letter signed by some six-score men who lent their names to be used in attacking the present administration in Puntland, whom may I remind you are, as we speak, engaged in building new motorways whilst maintaining existing roads, building airports whilst refurbishing existing ones, opening up schools, hospitals, banks whilst nurturing the private sector so as to sustain economic growth, control inflation and manage rising standard cost of living, encourags the establishment of developmental projects, governmental, institutional, social, financial or otherwise funded by communities abroad and by the international communities. For instance, it is planned to build motorways linking Galdogob to Garacad through Galkacyo and from Garacad to Bosaso through Eyl and from Bosaso to Badhan in order to boost the economy, to facilitate freight movement between the regions of the State, and to commence expansion projects in districts that were considered derelict in the past. Also planned are schemes to build schools and hospitals in every city and village in Puntland whilst the administration plans to focus on strengthening institutions put in place over the past thirty four months and to sustain stability in order to attract foreign investments into the State, and additionally to further mature the monetary mechanism that is to be employed by the existing six operational State-managed banks two in Bosaso whilst there is one in each of the major cities in Puntland including Lascanod, Galkacyo, Badhan and Garowe. None of the aforementioned establishments ever existed in Puntland prior to the birth of the Puntland State of Somalia, for the area had been neglected by former civilian governments and had been deliberately and institutionally obliterated by the late military regime of the old Republic. The question that begs to be addressed in the right-thinking minds of every Puntlander is if the administration is so corrupt, its President so crooked he stashes funds away in foreign accounts and its officials are criminal in accordance with Mr (Please click here)'s revelations, how is it then that within such a short period of time so much has been achieved, so much have been established, and decentralised, civilian style government put in place?

To go back to PuntWatch's press release, as one goes through the list of names in some of these infamous letters, namely the one quoted in PuntWatch's press release, a sigh or perhaps a smile gets the better of one's mellow manner because of the ludicrous nature of the whole affair for unfortunately none of the names listed carry any political or communal clout in Puntland. What simply brings the message home to the well-informed reader is how none of the reputable Isims of the State are mentioned in these releases that are mushrooming by the day as if they were getting out of fashion. What is far more interesting to note is that a day after this particular letter was posted by a group of men with political agenda opposing the administration in support of one of the candidates running for the office of Presidency, a rebuttal letter denouncing the vulgarity and inappropriateness of the letter had been issued in the name of Isims of the Puntland State of Somalia bearing the signature of the highly respected "Boqor Mohamud Boqor Muse" on the 22nd of May. Would you believe it if I was to tell you that Mr (Please click here) and the candidate in question are in agreement to instigate a political filthy campaign to tarnish the good image of the current administration, to abuse the good name of the Isims, to manipulate the news, to turn the public against the administration, to divide in order to rule, to fabricate groundless stories in order to stir up trouble: for political gains and to simply destruct.

Further, I fail to notice in all of Mr (Please click here)'s press releases including those issued under such names as Somali Peace Rally, Bay Centre for Conflict Resolution to name a few, not in a single line, where Mr (Please click here) proposes structured means to improve matters as they stand, challenge the status quo presenting viable alternatives, nor does he ever provide, discuss or explore feasibility studies to replace what he so sightlessly classifies as 'corrupt, backhander administration". A single commonality that all his writings seem to share is the use of ugly language enticing the public to disturb the peace, to disrupt the progress that has been made through sheer industriousness on the part of the public as well as the administration and to cripple the vibrant, growing economy of the Puntland State of Somalia.

At this juncture I would like to refer to a passage from an article of which intent was to stir deep-seated, silent convictions of the intellectuals of the State "Puntland is for the people as much as the people are for the State. The people are there to protect its territorial integrity and sovereignty, to safeguard its natural resources, to nurture its intrinsic habitats including that of its citizens of all creed, origin or denomination, and to preserve its rich culture and traditional heritage as much as the State is to provide an environment for its populace to thrive. Without the other, neither stands a chance for survival. Every citizen of the State has an undeniable right constructively, and that is the operative term here, to seek methods to improve matters as they stand at the present moment, to challenge the status quo not for sake of it, rather to put forth applicable and auspicious substitutes, to debate the ills of the community so as to steer the society away from the tribulations to a better lifestyle and not for entertainment, to discuss facts and ideas of diverse sources, not opinions, in order to arrive an all-encompassing common ground that benefits the majority, to appraise proposed plans and motives behind the decision-making process engaged by elected official of the State and not to engage in acts of character assassination, again to reconcile, thus offset debits against credits for balance, and to invigorate the mutilated morale of the majority that has very little faith in their leaders and not to ridicule them. Dividing, pitching one group against another, purchasing and selling the souls of the poor as a commodity on the open market with meagre or at times empty promises, disgracing community leaders in the use of foul language, encoding the brains of the intellectually challenged with devious notions devised to turn them into living robots is not only regressive but also a deplorable rearward process" Do Puntlanders Ever Learn, Syed, Ahmed Gashan, April 2001.

Therefore, I ask of you, my dear Puntlanders, should we, or should we not put Mr (Please click here) et al out of commission before irreparable damage is inflicted? Must we, or must we not halt him along with his allies in their tracks before they plant seeds of poison in the minds of the young, the innocent and the future leaders of the State? Must we, or must we not study the political goings in Puntland to suss out possible deficiencies? If so is determined, should we not be introducing remedial measures without applying defamatory rhetoric of no substantial substance. Must we, or must we not come together around the discussion table, citizens of the State both leaders [political as wells as community leaders] and civilians, to examine what we are doing wrong, and where matters go awry and resolve our differences, personal or otherwise, in an amicable fashion as was the tradition for our forefathers? Must we, or must we not take our future in our hands to reach goal congruence and decide what is beneficial to us, to the State, and to our future generations? Must we, or must we not bring an end to the culture of being represented by the likes of Mr (Please click here) whose only interest in the matter as a whole is to see our destruction, our humiliation in the hands of the enemy, our impecunious and our annihilation from existence? I SAY WE MSUT. For should we fail to do so, far worse cleansing of ethnicity than that has taken place in the rotten allies and the bloody beaches of Mogadishu and slaughtering in the back streets of Kismayo will ensue where you and I, if not our offspring will be the ones to bear the brunt of it all.

We shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end. We shall fight for our future; we shall fight with growing confidence and strength on the Internet. We shall defend our State whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the seas, oceans, beaches; we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills to defend our beloved Puntland; we shall never surrender.

And finally, I will repeat the same line of advice I have availed to Mr (Please click here) in an earlier response to wise up, to grow up, to wake up from the delusional trance for which he seems destined, to partner with his fellow countrymen rather than alienate himself, to refrain from this habitual un-gentlemanly conducts, misdeeds, use of foul language, deeds of disrespect, fabrication of mythical stories for the purpose of creating excitement, and to leave the smear campaign, the witch-hunt and the personal attack behind along with the twisted, morally deplorable practise of inventing fictitious organisations and sensationalist stories none of which serve any purpose.

I suggest he perhaps returns home, submits his candidacy for the President of the Puntland State of Somalia, organises a decent campaign devoid of any malicious activities, should he considers himself a serious contender for the office.

Should that be not the case, then I only hope Mr (Please click here) will heed this brotherly advice, for should he chooses otherwise one is certain that one's future will be depressingly dismal.

Syed, Ahmed Gashan
ajgashan@hotmail.com


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Posted: May 30 by SOMALITALK.COM Team


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