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|ADDIS-ABABA DONORS MEETING IS A QUANTUM LEAP FOR SOMALILAND|
ADDIS-ABABA DONORS MEETING IS A QUANTUM LEAP FOR SOMALILAND
Somaliland was politically lying dormant since it withdrew from the former republic of Somalia. This aloofness and isolationism could be attributed to many different factors. Most of these factors are the mistakes of Somalilanders themselves.
Firstly, successive Somaliland governments hardly dared to venture abroad and seek Somaliland some sort of political standing, be it a full recognition or a status that permits Somaliland to attend and convene regional and international conferences, to trade with international governments and companies and above all to have a voice on the global issue.
There had been delegations from Somaliland during Abdiraxman Tuurís
government who were visiting countries mostly Europe, but their efforts to convince their hosts were hampered by the lack of security and infrastructure in Somaliland, plus the hidden intentions of the two-faced leader (Tuur) who was not genuinely interested in Somalilandís position.
Secondly, Egal had tried in vain to obtain a legal status for Somaliland, it is either that his successive foreign ministers were knocking the wrong doors when they go out of Somaliland to procure and rally support for Somalilandís claim of independence, or perhaps the Egalís administration was playing the wait and see policy that John Major in Britain was playing when he refused to join the European union. But one thing is for certain, Egal was very reluctant to push harder and take Somaliland further to stand out from the crowd.
But now, where on earth did Edna come from? Was she sent by God to save Somaliland from the wilderness? No one from Somaliland has used his or her assets, brain and physical strengths to boost Somalilandí image, except Edna. What is more, she has used her personal experiences to lift and enhance Somalilandís National Health by not only opening a teaching and a maternity hospital, but building it with her own money. The greatest step taken by Edna, which again no Somalilander had taken before is this: when Edna was the late presidentís wife during his prime ministerial period in former Somalia, she had many friends around the world, and during the time she was working for the World Health Organization (WHO), she befriended people from many nations and different genders who happened to be her colleagues, directors and general executives. Now those people are mostly senior politicians and have high ranking positions in their countries. She is now courting those previous international colleagues and acquaintances to back up the quest for Somalilandís recognition. This is absolutely incredible and something that could serve as a role-model for Somaliland's idle veteran politicians.
The Addis Ababa meeting on Wednesday 17.09.03 which was chaired by Edna was an important milestone and a quantum leap for Somalilandís political reputation. There was a sigh of relief in the room where we were listening to the news from the BBC reporter Adan Osman in Adis-ababa, when he said that Edna Adan was elected to chair the meeting. This couldnít have come at a better time. I craved for this kind of news for many years, and I hope it is the beginning of many more to come.
President Riyaale has made a good choice when he selected Edna as foreign minister. It was an excellent decision that Riyaale took in the right direction. There are always people that have the tendency to criticize and deprecate somebody's efforts rather than encouraging the good work that the person is doing. I was astonished by the article on Jamhuuriya on-line written by the man whose name is Mawliid Abdillahi on 21/09/03. In his reporting from the Mininstry of foreign affairs in Hargaisa he said that Somaliland's relationship with South Africa is a female sympathy that the lady who is South Africa's foreign minister has for Edna. Well, Mr Abdillahi has failed to notice that no one before (male or female) who had ever obtained sympathy for Somaliland from his foreign friends, except Edna. Even Egal tried many times, but brought little to Somaliland from outside.
Mr Abdillahi has overlooked the fact that we cannot afford to miss any
foreigner who calls us Somaliland government, let alone anyone who may
have sympathy for us. Mr Abdillahi has claimed that he is an international relations wizard, but how come he does not understand the influence that a foreign friend can have, or has, on his government, and the relationship between countries? I think his reporting was absurd and unproffesional. If friendship cannot bring anythig, who brought Kofi Annan to office? How did East Timor get its recognition and independece? I think you better find out before writing another report.
Since Edna is busy with foreign affairs, we need another Edna inside the country, probably a woman minister for the Health or the Education department, as they are the main departments which attract delegations from countries around the world and international agencies.
Edna is a leading champion of Somaliland's quest for world recognition, and posterity will remember her as a great lady.
Ahmed Ali Aden