Somaliland is celebrating 28 years since it declared independence from Somalia. Using quiet diplomacy to lobby neighbours , a delegation from the Ugandan parliament on Thursday listened to Somaliland Members of Parliament make their case on the same.
Somaliland MP, Abdurahman Atan explained his country’s struggle for international recognition. “There’s a legitimate case for Somaliland to be recognized, a legitimate case to look at what has been done, legitimate case about the yearnings of Somaliland people to be free and independent,” he said. “They have a right to do so and a right to be part of the international community.”
Outside, the streets of Hargeisa were receiving a face lift ahead of Saturday, when thousands of people will gather at independence square to celebrate the anniversary of the independence declaration. Somaliland now issues its own passport, has its own currency and a flag. It has managed to remain peaceful despite an on-going civil war in Somalia; Somaliland has held regular elections since 2003.
The African Union and the United Nations have, however, refused to recognize the breakaway nation, tying its fate to Somalia’s final say. Atan says the unions fear that, by granting Somaliland independence, other African regions will also seek the same.
‘They are talking about Pandora’s Box; if for example they recognise Somaliland, they think other African regions will also ask for independence. But that’s not true; Somaliland has been an independent country before they joined Somalia.’
Although it has diplomatic representation in several countries, lack of international recognition means it cannot access aid or loans from multilateral institutions like the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank.
CENTER FOR AFRICAN STUDIES
Center for Africa Studies (AFRAM) which located in Ankara, is an organization facilitating under the administration of African Affairs Council (AFAC). It makes various researches about Africa to enhance economic and cultural bounds between Africa and Turkey. AFRAM’s publishings has been shared with different institutions as they require to obtain.
Africa Observatory is one the publishing of AFRAM and it has been published each two weeks. It has been delivered to different institutions via e-mail.