Friday, 13 April 2012

What Went Wrong? Why southern Somalia Failed and Somaliland


By Abdi Hussein Daud
April 12, 2012
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For the past two decades, southern Somalia has been plagued by sporadic and
unrelenting civil war, terrorism, pirates, famine, and wide spread diseases which
claimed the lives of up to 200,000 to 300,000 people. The persistent
multifarious ordeals that ordinary citizens have endured thus far are widely
reported by the international media as well as humanitarian agencies. Since its
effects and magnitude have been extensively scrutinized elsewhere, it is futile to
reiterate in here. There have been fourteen reconciliation attempts aimed at
restoring peace and stability in southern Somalia but all have failed to yield the
intended objectives. Subsequently, southern Somalia became, as international
community describes it, a failed state due to its manifestation of all its hallmarks:
an ineffective government, widespread corruption, lack of public services,
prevalent criminal enterprise, economic decline, and muddled movement of
populations.
In sharp contrast to southern Somalia, Somaliland has successfully constructed
the first democratic state of its kind in the Horn of Africa with emerging
laissezfaire
economy. Notwithstanding its challenges, Somaliland has formulated legal
frameworks intended for the extension of democratic institutions, e.g., various
political parties, free and fair elections, due process of law, freedom of assembly,
freedom of association, freedom of the press, and, above all, peaceful and
democratic transfer of power. It is indeed an oasis of peace, democracy and
prosperity. How did Somaliland manage, you may correctly inquire, attain this
unprecedented triumphant while their counterpart, southern Somalia, has
constantly failed to restore peace, let alone construct any type of governance?
To provide impartial answer to the aforesaid inquiry, this short piece strives to
scrutinize the underlying
southern Somalia as well as the unprecedented success of Somaliland. Numerous
individuals who have attempted to inspect the fundamental causes of these
differences failed miserably to appreciate and employ the principle of historical
materialism. Historical materialism holds that in order to unearth Read More
factor that has played significant role for the failure of

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