Recently we have witnessed Somalia’s latest blunder at the IPU election that took place in Luanda, Angola. The Inter-parliamentary union (IPU) fosters cooperation among nations. It provides for lawmakers a space to discuss and find a consensus on pressing matters such as human rights, sustainable development, and peace-building efforts. Furthermore, IPU provides technical assistance to parliaments, helping them develop effective legislative framework and democratic practices. Somalia is a member of this international institution and is represented by five non-permanent members of the federal parliament.
Hon Marwo Bashir, was a candidate for the IPU presidency until last minute before she was stabbed behind the back by the speaker Adan Madoobe.
This shocking turn of events left her devastated and bewildered. How could this happen? She had worked tirelessly for months to secure the endorsement of both the lower and upper house of the Somali parliament and has received overwhelming support from the public. She invested time and energy into this campaign, believing that she could make a difference and represent her country on the international stage. Travelling across the globe, meeting with IPU members, politicians, and influential figures, she had built a network of support that seemed unbreakable. But suddenly her dreams had been shattered by political maneuverings and backroom deals. In less than 48 hours before the election, the speaker of the house wrote a letter to the secretariat of the IPU indicating that Somalia’s candidate has resigned from the race. The speaker of the house, someone whom she had trusted and respected, had turned against her at the last moment. His sudden claim that she had resigned from the race was nothing short of a betrayal. To make matters worse, it was revealed that Somalia has thrown its support behind the Tanzanian candidate, because of some business deals. It was a blatant display of corruption, disregard, and treason. It seemed that personal gain had triumphed over the genuine desire to serve and represent the nation. In the face of such adversity, she refused to give up. She reached out to the Somali parliamentarians urging them to investigate the matter and expose the truth. She wanted Somalis to know that she had been denied the opportunity to represent her country, not because of her lack of qualifications or dedication, but because of the underhanded dealings of those in power. She gave interviews and explained what happened to her. Evidence of the speaker’s involvement in the conspiracy against her has been confirmed, tarnishing his reputation, and unmasking his true face. The President’s questionable business dealings were also brought to light, casting doubt on his leadership. This illuminates the absence of parliamentary independence, as the president assumes the role of the sole leader and decision-maker in the nation.
The opportunity to represent her country at the highest IPU level had been unjustly snatched away from her. And yet, she couldn’t help but feel a sense of pride as she receives overwhelming support from her MP colleagues, who are waging a fight to restore the dignity and integrity of the Somali parliament. While her personal journey may have been marred by deceit and betrayal, she is hoping that it would serve as a wake-up call for all Somalis. In Somalia, there is an urgent need to remain vigilant, to stand up against corruption and fight for the national interest. This is the first time in the history of our country that Somali government betrayed its own candidate over a foreigner. Some people are shameless and mean, and above all they are also foolish. Unfortunately, our current speaker falls into this category.
Finally, the Somali parliament is now forced to confront the situation. The speaker is guilty of corruption and abuse of power and must be removed from the position. This individual is utterly incapable of guiding the federal parliament, repeatedly demonstrating his lack of integrity, incompetence and involvement in corrupt practices. It is time to let him go.
Dr. Naima Osman