Somaliland is a country with a decent people. The goals of this small country are the same as those of any country in the world, to achieve economic development, peace, justice, stability etc. She does not exist in a vacuum, but is a part of the international community that she must live with. Even the most powerful countries need the rest of the world, the trade between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R continued throughout the cold war. It is imperative that Somaliland maintains good relations with as many countries and other international partners as possible, and avoid making enemies, especially powerful ones.

The government of Somaliland was elected to improve the lot of the people of this small country. Part of its responsibility is to maintain good relations or even improve them with other countries and international partners; however, the current government has failed miserably. It chose to snub, and then antagonize a very powerful institution, the US House of Representatives. Mr. Donald Payne, the powerful congressman from New Jersey, is also the chairman of the US House Foreign Affairs sub-committee on Africa and Global Health. He is a pioneer in efforts to restore democracy worldwide as is being done in Somaliland, is the first and so far only congressman to visit Somaliland, is known for many other heartening positions on human rights, not to mention that he is the only congressman to invite Somaliland to address the US house of representatives.

Mr. Payne invited Somaliland to attend a hearing in the US House of Representatives to address such issues as security and piracy in which our government declined supposedly because Puntland and the TFG heads were also invited. The rationale that the Somaliland government used was that they could not be at the same place as Puntland and the TFG, because this would make it seem like Somalia was still united. This logic is seriously flawed because , the US government does  not recognize Somaliland, neither does Mr. Payne, the issues being discussed had nothing to do with sovereignty because if that was the case, then they would have only invited the TFG which they officially recognize as the government of Somalia, and Somaliland as part of it. If anything, this would have been more embarrassing for the TFG for having two other presidents challenging his claim. Also it is amazing how selective and unwise our government can be in choosing when to defend Somaliland’s sovereignty, bringing to mind  president Dahir Rayale Kahin travelling in the same plane with the former president of the TFG, Abdillahi Yousuf Ahmed. If you ask me that should have been a time when our government took a stand and refused to be humiliated, as that was what could have been the only outcome, moreover, he could have just travelled another day. What a shame.

However, our government decided not to attend, giving Puntland a historic opportunity to make Somaliland look like the bad guys. The president of Puntland Mr. Faroole seized the opportunity and said that he wished his brothers, Somaliland were present and had a talk with them. This was good propaganda for them because then Somaliland looked like they did not want to talk and to somebody who did not really understand the issues, like the US congress, it would seem plausible. By refusing to attend, also, the congressman who invited our government was infuriated and rightfully so. He thought that Somaliland did not need the assistance of his seat, the US congress or the US government for that matter and let it be known that if Somaliland wanted isolation, she would get it.

This was a diplomatic disaster on the hands of Rayale and company. Can you imagine Somaliland getting assistance, trade and the good recognition that we have struggled and strived for, for close to two decades, with the US government opposed? I would say that it would be practically impossible, so you would think that our government would put the utmost effort in averting this, but no, they remained too busy looting public treasure and allocating themselves and their cohorts’ public property.

Kulmiye recognized the vacuum in foreign policy in Somaliland and moved quickly and heroically to save the day. Mr. Mohamed Omar Abdillahi, foreign affairs representative for the party was dispatched and he quickly showed competence by producing quick result. He was able to meet with Mr. Payne who for example can facilitate assistance for Somaliland in areas such as security, piracy, education, health and more and with enough effort from Somaliland, even recognition. In other words, having good relations with Mr. Payne and the US congress can only help Somaliland and the contrary only damage her. We should not tire in our efforts to sell ourselves to anyone who is willing to lend an ear and Mr. Donald Payne is definitely listening. We should take loud speakers and Kulmiye has just done that, blast our voices and let the whole world know that we exist instead of cowering and hiding when we are confronted with the smallest obstacles on our way, as did the government of President Dahir Rayale. Our government dropped the ball big time and did not even have the foresight or ability to pick it back up. This was a situation in which some amends had to be made, but since none were forthcoming from our government, I can safely conclude that this is a government that is not good for Somaliland. It is a spent force that needs to be replaced before it brings Somaliland down with it.

Kulmiye decided to intervene in the strained relationship between Somaliland and the US which was brought about by the incompetence and lack of wisdom of Mr. Rayale’s government. I think I can also safely add arrogance of our government because of the lack of effort to repair the damage and the false accusations of supposed hatred Mr. Payne has for Somaliland. I am sure that if our government could make it stick, they would have accused Mr. Payne of being a danger to the security of Somaliland or of belonging to Al-shabaab, cheap accusations and labels they put on anyone who dares to have a different opinion, but not this time around, Mr. Payne plays in the big leagues. Thanks to kulmiye however, they succeeded in getting an invitation to the US congress, no one can deny or diminish their accomplishment. Their efforts have brought Somaliland great success and the envy of their enemies. They have proven beyond any doubt that kylmiye is the patriotic party of Somaliland present and future. Kuliye leaders are also known to be the patriots of the past who have time and again and allah knows that it is true, come to Somaliland’s rescue. They have shown maturity, wisdom, stealth, resilience in coming to Somaliland’s rescue. Allah knows that I am saying this from the bottom of my heart. May allah help them help us.

God bless Kulmiye and god bless Somaliland.

Dr.Mohamud M.Nur (Dr. Abaayo).