President Dwight. D. Eisenhower of USA once said, “The supreme value of a leadership is unquestionably integrity”. To explain it, Integrity is the quality of first being honest, consistent in character and having strong moral principles or moral uprightness. What is best associated with the leader’s personal gains or benefits is the most disastrous social dilemma for the national success. In this article we are going to examine why Somaliland succeeded it’s very difficult and hard efforts of nation build in its infant stage of late President Egal era; while after twenty eight years of existence, Somaliland is in a state of uncertainty economically, socially and politically.
The unfortunate and un acceptable phenomenon that Somaliland experienced for the last decade, within the administrations of president Siilaanyo and president Bihi’s current governments is that both of them failed to solve even the inflation problem for that long period; which is the simplest financial problem that a country can face. Siilaanyo’s government had delegated a committee to find a successful solution for the inflation crisis that devastated the economy of the common people. Bihi’s current government also tried to find solution for the inflation problem and assigned a committee for that specific mandate. within a very short period of time each of the two committees released a very hasty decision, indicating some points which were very similar in nature and irrelevant to cure the illness; but instead worsened the situation causing the inflation rate went higher.
It is obvious that there are government institutions and those appointed to the top posts of these institutions, which are responsible to prevent the country from these financial and monetary problems. These Institutions and their heads of both the two governments neglected and failed to perform their material Duties of what they are responsible for the country which include:
To prevent the country from inflation which is a market-determined decline in the value of the somaliland shilling or altering the face value of the local currency
To stand ready to avoid local currency depreciation or decrease in value relative to other major currencies
To set a system that can maintain the country’s currency fixed value and its fixed exchange rate with respect to the foreign reference currencies used in the country
To have the knowledge of revaluation monetary system whenever a floating exchange rate due to the market forcesis detected; which is an increase of the local currency’s fixed rate, making the foreign currency value go down in the market
To control the demand and supply balance both in the context of trade and foreign currency needs, because always excess demand over supply definitely cause inflation
To control the prices of the essential goods and services especially food, medicines, petroleum and building materials which now increased more than 100% with respect of their prices when Siilaanyo came to power
And to secure the stability and gradual growth of the national economy
The thing that nobody can explain what did it meant is that the ministers, head of agencies and officers mandated for these mentioned and much more other responsibilities who failed to save the country from this economic crisis again became the committee members selected to find solutions for the problems resulted from the failures of their responsibilities.
There are many well experienced professional economists and financial experts who have the knowledge in dealing with the inflation problem that devastated the economy of the state, affected the people’s livelihoods, increased the prices of commonly consumed commodities like food, medicines, petroleum, building materials and other essential goods. Using the word experts, I don’t mean to hire foreign economists; what I really mean is that there are so many somalilanders who can ride this nation to economically stable position with an absence of excessive fluctuations in the macro-economy, with low or zero inflation and fairly constant economic growth. The founders who set this nation’s finance system such as taxation rating systems, state accounting procedures, budget design and management, customs tariff, all finance related laws and regulations during the nation building period of late president M. I. Egal are still living in somaliland and mostly in the capital; with nothing to do sitting in the bars and other public places.
These nation building pillars and experts in the economy and finance fields succeeded to make Somaliland enjoy with economic stability, gradual growth of nation building, zero inflation rate, fixed value of the local currency relative to foreign currencies, local currency fixed exchange rate with respect to the foreign currencies, the lowest prices ever of food commodities and other essential goods, and a banking system strong to control the financial market. They achieved all these monetary and socioeconomic developments in the early years of Somaliland existence with a resource of less than 30 Million dollars national budget and a zero foreign aid funds.
Egal’s government gradually moved this nation from nothing to a position it stood up on its own legs; having its economic, monetary, social and political instruments to be measured as a legitimate and sovereign state. Every institution, every organ and every sector of the government moved through the process of gradual development as a brick fitting its position in the wall of nation building. That nation building success and economic stability in somaliland’s infant stage resulted from the combination of a determined and good visional leadership with commitment and Integrity and the efforts of those professionals empowered with Honesty, intellectuality and patriotic decisions capable to move the country forward towards development.
They applied good and effective performance of the Human Resources that helped to achieve the objectives of building well functioning government institutions and enhance their productivity. They conducted an efficient, effective, transparent and accountable Financial management system; in such a manner as to accomplish the nation building based plan, through the legitimate intermediate institutions of the government. They properly scheduled and prioritized nation’s wall building, by creating and establishing one after the other of all conditioned organs, resources, values and items that an independent state should possess. Simply the secret was that there were leadership values based on seeking national success through honesty and integrity. While these ever standing failures that dominated the last two governments’ activities rests on the twist of the values adopted by the leaders and other officers of these governments from national success based values to personal gain based values.
So, to overcome the current inflation, monetary disorders and financial fluctuations, we need those who know much to deal with these problems be named or appointed to the top posts of the concerned ministries, institutions and agencies; to build the central bank capability to control the SL shilling value to foreign currencies exchange market; and to restore the values adopted by the leadership at the time of Egal that shaped the nation’s success. The type of values that leaders adopt influence their actions and these subsequent actions help determine the success or failure of a nation and the life’s outcomes of its people both in terms of happiness and financial success. “Nation’s successes and failures depend on the values that its leaders adopt” Adam Ali Younis