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Weekly Press Conference on the Progress of the Government

Storyline:National News

The Minister of Information, Mustafa Duhulow, today addressed the media, providing an update on the progress of the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) over the last
week. The Minister discussed various issues: The appointment of the new Prime Minister, President’s visit to Kismayo, Somali Media Development, Humanitarian assistance, Security Operations, the
progress on Public Finance Management, and the relationship between Somalia and China.

The appointment of a new Prime Minister
The Minister of Information first addressed the appointment of a new Prime Minister: H.E. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, the President of Somalia on 17 December 2014 appointed H.E. Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke as the new Prime Minister of Somalia. The President said after consultations he decided to appoint Omar Sharmarke who has a wealth of knowledge and experience and can expedite the remaining tasks to the vision 2016. The appointed Prime Minister spoke at the event and accepted to become the Prime Minister of Somalia. Ambassador Sharmarke previously held the position of Prime Minister of Somalia between 2009 and 2010 and he promised to redouble the efforts of the government in order to achieve vision 2016 goals. He said that he will consult widely before appointing new capable and competent ministers to lead the efforts of the government.”

President’s visit to Kismayo
The Minister of Information spoke on the President’s visit to Kismayo:“H.E. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, the President of Somalia visited Kismayoon 18 December 2014. The visit was part of the political outreach
program aimed to consult with Jubbaland State Administration leaders,and representatives of communities in the area. The President praisedthe leader of Jubbaland for his efforts to bring all stakeholders on board in order to finalize the process of completing the governance of the Jubbaland Administration. The President also discussed the urgent need for Jubba to get further involved with the overall implementation of Federalism in Somalia, the review of the constitution and the implementation of the democratization process leading up to theelection of 2016.”

Somali Media Development
The Minister of Information spoke on the progress of Somali Media Development: “On 17 December 2014, I had a very productive meeting with the Minister of Information of Kuwait, Salman Sabah Al Salem
Al-Hamoud Al-Sabah. We discussed the strengthening of bi-lateral relations between Somalia and Kuwait and Somali Media Development.

We agreed to form a technical committee with members from both Ministries of Information. This committee will assess our respective needs, priorities and help establish a working partnership aimed to build the capacity of our staff, and the technical support that SNTV and Radio Mogadishu need. I updated my Kuwaiti colleague on the security and political progress as well as our plans for vision 2016. Kuwait and Somalia have very strong and historic relations. I have also asked him to assist us with the development of Somali private media so that they can positively make contributions to the peace building of the nation.”

Humanitarian Assistance
The Minister of Information spoke on humanitarian assistance: “ The Ministry of Interior & Federal Affairs distributed food aid whichconsisted of flour and sugar on 17th December 2014 to 3000 disable
people in Mogadishu. Turkey government donated the food aid to thepeople of Somalia. Representatives of the disable people who receivedthe food aid hugely thanked the ministry of Interior & Federal Affairs
and they asked more food aid as they cannot work due to theirdisability. On 16 December 2014 Hormuud Foundation also delivered medicine aid to Banadir Hospital for Women and children. The aid was
given to recent families that effected the drinking of poison water from well in Yaqshid district. Deputy Chairman of Hormuud Foundation Mr Omar Salad Farah stated that the Foundation will continue to
support people who are in desperate need of assistance, as part of the commitment from Hormuud. Abdirazak Hassan Ali, the Head of Banadir Hospital thanked Hormuud Foundation and stated that these medical supplies come at a right time and it will definitely easy the pressure from the hospital, which in turn hugely helps sick people.”

Security Operations

The Minister of Information spoke on security operations in Mogadishu and in Lower Shabelle region: “Security forces have been conducting security operations as part of the stabilization plan. On 16 December 2014 joint security forces conducted operations in Mogadishu and in Lower Shabelle region areas and as a result they captured 7 individuals believed to be members of Al-Shabaab. Mohamed Yusuf Osman, the spokesperson of the Ministry of National Security praised the security forces’ success and said that these operations took place outskirts of Mogadishu, from Kaxda district up to Elasha Biyaha area, and Arbiska, Lafole, and other areas. It was believed that Al-Shabaab members were planning attacks in Mogadishu from these locations. The spokesperson also assured to public that they will continue these kind of operations until the threat from terrorists is eliminated, as part

of the Stabilization Plan.”
The progress of the State formation in Central regions
The Minister of Information spoke on the progress of State formationin middle regions: “On 15 December, H.E. Abdullahi Godah Barre, the Minister of Interior & Federal Affairs concluded a three day seminar
with the technical committee and discussed the best ways to proceed in planning the conference to form a federal unit in Central regions of Somalia. The technical committee is expected to start their
consultation and planning work next week. Minister Godah asked them to fulfill their mandated work effectively and to ensure that inclusivity is the norm as they plan and consult with communities. After all, the new administration will be one that fully represents the people in central regions. On 17 December 2014 the technical committee held a democratic election following which they appointed Halimo Ismail (Halimo Yarey) as Chiarperson, Mohamed Hashi as Deputy, Ahmed Dubad  Ali as the Secretary General and Omar Ali as their spokesperson.”
The progress on Public Finance Management
The Minister of Information spoke on the progress on Public Finance Management: “The Federal Government of Somalia has been active at reforming public finance management for sometime in order to gain the confidence of the people. Ahmed Yusuf Mumin, the Accountant General on 15 December 2014 issued statement assuring Somalis that public finance management is making huge progress though the implementation of the transparency and accountability system. He also said that public can
now see all income and expenditure of the government via the ministry of finance’s website The Accountant General said that transparency and accountability are very important in order to maintain public confidence. By publishing this information, we hope it
will generate feedback, critics and comments from public, which in turn will help policy makers make the necessary adjustments in everyone’s interest. All accounts from January to September 2014 have
been published and the rest representing the last quarter of the year will be published soon.”

Somalia and China relations

The Minister of Information spoke on the bi-lateral relations between Somalia and China: “H.E. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, the President of Somalia on 15 December 2014 accepted the Letter of Credence from the new China Ambassador to Somalia Wei Hongtian, who is known by Somalis by his Somali name of Warsame Geel-jire. Abdirahman Duale Beile, the Minister of Foreign affairs and Ambassador Wei Hongtian later held a joint press conference in Mogadishu and stated that both sides agreed to redouble the bi-lateral relations between Somalia and China. Ambassador Wei Hongtian said that China is ready to assist Somalia and to implement development projects as Somalia is getting peace and stable. The Ambassador spoke Somali very well and said he learned the language while studying at Somali National University in Mogadishu during the 80s.”