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Farmaajo’s new PM, hard lessons from Khaire and political loyalty

Storyline:National News

By T. Roble

Roble Mohamed Hussein is President Mohamed Farmaajo’s pick for premier and second PM during his tenure who will now steer the country into a transition in about 5 months’ time. Villa Somalia announced Hussein’s appointment Thursday evening, barely few hours after an electoral deal between Villa Somalia and the Federal Member States.

Hussein, a consultant with the International Labour Organisation is, as politics now go in Villa Somalia expected to operate in purely technocratic terms of reference with no show of political ambition as Farmaajo runs his ‘own man’ political show from the Villa. Hussein’s predecessor, Hassan Ali Khaire was kicked out some 58 days ago after what analysts and those close to the Villa said was a man ‘too ambitious who had overshadowed his boss’.


For Hussein, life at Villa Somalia is likely to be more defined, restricted and instructed with Farmaajo hopefully having learnt the hard way on why you should not delegate powers unchecked to your premier.

According to his application letter for the post obtained by Goobjoog News, Hussein presents himself as the best man fit for the job of Prime Minister-a position which has always been seen as a convenient trade-off should temperatures in the country’s political kitchen become too high to bear. Hussein describes his achievements as having managed multi-million dollar donor-funded projects while working for the ILO among a range of donor-supported projects in the last decade.

Like his predecessor, Khaire, Hussein has been resident in the non-governmental sector with considerable experience in projects run jointly with the Federal Government and local governments.

A civil engineer by training with a Masters in Environmental Engineering and Sustainable Infrastructure from Sweden and a bachelors in the civil engineering from the Somali National University, Hussein will be banking on these training, work experience and importantly political networks to form and run a new government for about four months before the term of the current administration lapses. President Farmaajo’s stay in office should fold by early February.


Unlike his predecessor who enjoyed a considerable amount of time-perhaps the longest uninterrupted stay in office in recent years, Hussein has no luxury of time. He too will not be enjoying a wider latitude within the political sphere at the OPM. He will have to make do with authority and power donated by the Constitution-albeit fuzzy with no headroom.

His appointment date was very strategic-Farmaajo did not want two centres of powers negotiating the delicate political deals with the FMS leaders as was the case during the Dhusamareb III talks which sources said was the master-stroke that delivered Khaire’s waterloo. In Dhusamareb, Khaire became the Federal Government and Villa Somalia folded together, a source intimated to Goobjoog News stretching Farmaajo’s patience beyond the elastic limit.

It was time to slay the political dragon and the sword of Damocles which had hang on Khaire’s head for some time fell thunderously on him as he stayed back in Dhusamareb after the talks.

Farmaajo should now be wiser in dealing with men with donated powers-they can usurp all there is and ultimately force you to work on their terms.

Like his predecessor, Khaire, Hussein has been resident in the non-governmental sector with considerable experience in projects run jointly with the Federal Government and local governments.

Aware of the challenging political environment, Hussein sought to convince his future boss he will come in as a peacemaker especially with the FMS where Khaire, in collaboration with his Farmaajo destroyed all trust and ultimately paid dearly to date.

“Despite the current political situation in the country, I believe this leadership position will provide me with the opportunity to continue to serve the people of Somalia in close collaboration with the respective Federal member states,” Hussein said in his application letter.

Hussein is expected to be approved by the Lower House in coming days before forming a new cabinet which too requires a stamp from the same chamber. His work seems clearly defined-prepare the country for elections in strict conformity with the Mogadishu Model agreed to Thursday.