Addis Ababa (HAN) December 11, 2014 – Expert Analysis, Your Power & Regional Influence Magazine, opinion page by Zeray Hailemariam (Geeska Afrika Online regular contributor in Addis) Part II.
What it has lacked was peace and development. Poverty is a source of instability. It is practically scrutinized everywhere that war-torn countries need economic recovery to sustain its peace and security.
According to the recent views of the UN Secretary General, Mr. Banki-moon and World Bank President Jim Young Kim, it seems that the world have well understood that the horn of Africa needs inclusive of security and development backings as the two are inseparable. They are comprehensive strategies. If either of them is missing, the other will not work out. Lack of development will obviously lead to instability and vice versa. Countries including Somalia with lack of delivering goods and services are prone to instability. The people could get peace and security but these alone are not certificates for its sustainability. Proper delivery of goods and services are also needed. Apparently, Somalia needs potential investment, trade link, and other basic services to rebuild its war ruined infrastructures, hospitals, water wells, universities and other important things for development. It will be naïve to expect Somalia will continue to sustain it’s already gained peace without backing it with economic development.
Somalia is gifted with untouched abundant fertile land suitable for agricultural products to secure food self-sufficient. It has productive labor and open minded people for business. What really Somalia needs right now is what we call ‘quick-impact projects’ – water, health, education and investment in telecom, banking, road infrastructures, and agriculture, health and livestock potential sectors as well. Turkey and Ethiopia can be practical example for their combined efforts to structurally help Somalia move both in economic and security ways. Asamnew confirmed that the relation between Somalia and Ethiopia is not only limited to regional peace and security, as many would imagine, but also includes education, transport, and trade and investment cooperation. These ties are meant to support Somalia to repair its economies and to guarantee future peace in the region. For a country that has been at war for more than 25 years, it needs international and regional assistances in investment.
My country is at forming a working federal system so that all regions can cooperate for workable development and political administrations, Ambassador Ahmed stated. “Already the security and military forces are managing their own affairs at all administrative levels”. What we need is investment and economic relations. Somalia has productive work forces, vast natural resources suitable for investment. “We have the very people who are entrepreneurs and creative people who need partners to invest in any sectors, thus, the government of Somalia are ready to provide all security and other assistances for investors”. The responsibility of managing our affairs rests on us; the rest can only help us but at the end of the day, it is up to us to manage our affairs, reiterated referring to Somali Diasporas whose help will be constructive. There will not be a peace and security without actual development, he stressed. We Somalis have come to realize that without economic development, peace and security cannot alone make our people happy. The federal government of Somalia has been able to set up functioning administrative to make sure there is enabling environment for investors to operate peacefully.
Recommendation: The International communities together with the peace loving Somali people have almost finished the business of stabilizing Somalia in the security issue. However, one important thing is missing. That is recovering Somalia with economic development. If not, the lives sacrificed, blood poured, energy and resources lost to see a peaceful Somalia, so far will not be fruitful. Somalia will likely be engulfed into war again if joblessness, hunger, and frustration are not replaced by more robust economic renaissance. A young Somali who get educational opportunity, job access and other economic stimulate will never be expected to join the anti-peace forces. The best solution for Somalia is to empower its people with economic improvement. Poverty is a source of instability. If both economic and security help do not go inclusively, something wrong will erupt. Somalia’s future is brighter than you might imagine, if economic assistance along with the help exerted for peace and security is done.
Zeray Hailemariam is a blogger at HornAffairs
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