Somali president calls for calm amid wild jubilations in Mogadishu

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Jubilant scenes in the Somali capital

Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo’s victory on Wednesday saw Somalia’s incumbent president Hassan lost the highly contested election after Farmajo took a clear lead over him and his predecessor Sharif Sheikh Ahmed.

MOGADISHU – Somalia’s new president has called for calm and people to abandon streets as thousands of jubilant Somalis continue to gather across the Somali capital in celebrations for his election for the third day.

Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo’s victory on Wednesday saw Somalia’s incumbent president Hassan lost the highly contested election after Farmajo took a clear lead over him and his predecessor Sharif Sheikh Ahmed.

As the election results were announced, bursts of gunfire rang out through the night in the Somali capital with soldiers and civilians amassed the streets, chanting Mr. Farmajo’s name.

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“Brother and sisters, things have turned in your favor and people won, therefore, I am asking to leave the streets and return to your normal life.” Mr. Farmajo said at a press conference on Friday.

“The campaign time is over, and now we have to start working together for the welfare of the people.” He said.

The new Somali-American president, who holds degrees from the State University of New York in Buffalo, was prime minister for eight months before leaving the post in 2011. He had lived in the United States since 1985, when he was sent there with Somalia’s foreign affairs ministry.

Somalia's new president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo
Somalia’s new president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo

Somalia began to fall apart in 1991, when warlords ousted dictator Siad Barre and then turned on each other. Years of conflict and al-Shabab attacks, along with famine, left this Horn of Africa country of about 12 million people largely shattered.

Somalia’s instability landed it among the seven Muslim-majority countries affected by President Donald Trump’s executive order on immigration, even though its government has been an increasingly important partner for the U.S. military on counterterrorism efforts, including drone strikes against al-Shabab leaders.

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1 COMMENT

  1. Subject: “Somali president calls for calm amid wild jubilations in Mogadishu”, 11 Feb 2017

    Commentary, 11 Feb 2017
    Let me quote the words of the new Somali President which reflects his character.
    Quote ““Brother and sisters, things have turned in your favor and people won, therefore, I am asking to leave the streets and return to your normal life. The campaign time is over, and now we have to start working together for the welfare of the people.”” UNQUOTE http://www.alleastafrica.com

    The above quotation clearly describes the CHARACTER of the newly elected President for Somalia. Perhaps – let us cross our fingers – this is the BEGINNING of an END to the Somali problem. The Somali people deserve to have Earthly-Life of their own free choosing. I wish them good luck in that endeavour.

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