By: Ms. Farah Mohumed Yusuf
Regional Reporter for SL Standard
The paramilitary Liyuu Police will be a huge challenge to the newly elected leader of Ethiopia’s Somali region.
The ousted and embattled president, Abi Iley established the Liyuu police which pledged their allegiance to his administration. The paramilitary forces committed widespread human rights violation and crimes against humanity.
Regional experts said that it will be an uphill battle for the new president, Hon. Mustafe to train the army which were recruited not on the basis of educational qualifications. Looting, killing and gross violations of human rights were their daily day practice and it will be quite hard for the new president to educate them so that they will eliminate bad culture and norms.
Senior army officers are those that are blamed for much of the atrocities committed against populace in the Somali region when Abdi Iley was in power. Those implicated of the committing crimes against humanity must face justice and these could be achieved unless there is a comprehensive reconciliation process that commences in the region.
Some of the Liyuu police senior officers are still believed to have pledged their allegiance to the deposed leader, Abdi Iley who is under house arrest in Addis Ababa, Ethiopian capital. They are staunchly against the political reforms that took place in Ethiopia’s Somali region.
The other thorny issues that will be a huge constraint to the new leadership is the formation of regional administrations appointed by Abdi Iley, the ex-leader and made the announcement just days ahead of his toppled from power. If the new president makes changes to the newly formed regional administrations then that will create a backlash in the region where many residents who have welcomed the provincial administrations will go against them,
Unless President, Mustafe reshuffles the administrations created by predecessor based on educational qualifications that will be a good new for him and that won’t back fire him.
But if all appointed provincial administrations are sacked then the biggest fear is that will cause disillusionment among the public. The worry is that this will lead to unrest to transpire in the provincial towns. The challenges include the changing of the regional flag, the anthem and the name of the region which the new leadership announced in hasty way.
Hon. Mustafe must consult with these aforementioned issues with the Federal Level authorities rather than making unilateral decisions. The other problem is that the restoration of land where the landlords were forcefully confiscated by the previous leadership. Hon. Mustafe, the new president must resolve the recurrence of skirmishes between Oromo and Somali due to land dispute. He also must deal with Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) who also laid their arms and wish to accomplish their goal by peaceful means. The mission of ONLF was to take the power once they oust Abdi Iley from power.