Office of the president of Somalia

Statement of President Hassan in Bahardar conference          


Office of the president of Somalia
Press release
Sunday, April 21, 2013

Statement by his excellency, hassan sheikh mohamoud, the president of the federal government of somalia on Bahar dar forum for security and  organized crimes.

His Excellency, Paul Kegame, President of the Republic of Rwanda, H.E Hailemariam Desalegn, Prime Minister of Federal Democratic Republic of  Ethiopia,

Distinguished Guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

First and foremost, let me take this opportunity to wholeheartedly  congratulate the TANA HIGH LEVEL FORUM BOARD for successfully convening  the 2nd TANA High level forum on security in Africa. Special  appreciation and gratitude goes to two of the most respected Africa’s  statesman and members of the Tana Forum Board His Excellency Olusegun  Obasanjo and His Excellency Thabo Mbeki. I wish them very best and  success.

We are much obliged to our hosts, the Federal Democratic Republic of  Ethiopia, to upkeep international attention and focus to the plight of  security and organized crimes in Africa. We all thank our host and those who initiated and organized this forum and the patience, compassion and hospitality to us.

Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen,

Terrorism is one of the biggest and most challenging security threats facing Africa and the World in the twenty-first century. To meet this  challenge, a truly African approach is needed, based on a clear legal  foundation and solid cooperation. The Federal Government of Somalia in  rejoining to the African spectrum as well as in the community of nations would like to contribute significantly and constructively in developing new ideas and frameworks to combat and improve security, based on our  own experiences.

As stated by those who already spoke, I am delighted to pay my  tribute and great admiration to the champion and the biggest advocate to peace and stability in Africa in general and in this region in  particular, the late Prime Minister of Ethiopia, H.E. Meles Zenewi.

Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Today, Africa needs strong commitment from its leaders and people to  stand together to combat any sort of illegal activities, including the  drugs and human trafficking, illegal arms trade, illegal fishing and  maritime piracy, toxic waste dumping, money laundering and any other  organized crime in Africa.

I use the word stand together because,  current organized crimes are Africanized; Therefore, the effort to  combat it MUST also be Africanized. I believe that our concerted efforts mitigated with a strong legal framework; and enforced laws will  generate a better image for Africa.

Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Africa must have the courage to say Crime is a Crime whatever  elements it involves, it has no justification, and we have to combat it  once and for all both intellectually and militarily in a unified manner.

Let me clarify about the present situation of my country. The  challenges that Somalia faces today are complex and differ from the  traditional organized crimes. Lack of security and functioning law  enforcement apparatus multiplied by prolonged statelessness have created a wide spread instability in the country. As a result, establishing  effective security sector remained top priority for my Government.  Today, however, there are encouraging signs of progress and hope, and  looking forward to stable country with functioning security, justice and law enforcement institutions.

Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Unlike some other countries, Somalia experiences daily instances of  criminality, to the vulnerable people, and abiding citizens losing their confidences and trust to the institutions. The challenge we are phasing is simultaneously building effective security institutions in one hand  and fighting organized crimes on the other hand, we have no choice. WE  MUST DO IT ON ALL ACCOUNTS.

Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am a firm believer that our national security depends on having  safe and secure neighbors, so our neighbors will depend on a safe and  secure Somalia.

The challenges that Somalia is facing today can be won and overcome,  if our African brothers and the international communities together  assist Somalia in building our security forces and its related  institutions with all its effectiveness and oversight civilian  leadership. Currently AMISOM is supporting our forces in defeating  terrorism in Somalia.

Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Let me remind you, that the threats of  transnational organized criminal activities in Somalia are not limited  to piracy and terrorism. It extends illegal fishing, toxic waste dumping and a huge destruction of our forest charcoal production and export.  These activities will not only be illegal but causing for Somalia huge  environmental problems that pauses serious danger for generations to  come. These crimes have to stop. This must not be seen as a Somali  problem. It is both African and global and must be faced in that way.

Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen,

We know that the costs imposed by Somali piracy on the global economy are so high and that international mobilization to eradicate piracy is  ongoing effort. However, these efforts cannot be sustained without  stable Somalia.

Parallel to that, my Government has launched a huge campaign to  eradicate the piracy through mediation and dialogue with the community  leaders and the local stakeholders. The fruits of this campaign have led to the voluntary denunciation of so many young Somalis to these illegal activities. The Government is planning to present to the international  community a plan for reengaging the young former pirates by establishing a vocational training centers and reeducating to abide by the national  and international laws.

Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I believe that Africa is waiting us to fully address and discuss  these issues in very frank and concerted way. To combat all sorts of  transnational organized crimes, we need to work out a strategy from the  local to the global level. The need for effective communications to  fight national and international organized crimes must be made locally  and globally. I hereby confirm that Somalia is committed to this.

Above all, we need a forum like this august one to organize many  events to continuously address and focus on the eradication of these  crimes.

May I take this opportunity to express my deep appreciation and  gratitude to the Institute of Peace and Security Studies, the TANA High  Level Forum Board for giving me the chance to address this forum. I  would also like to express the same appreciation of this audience. I am  particularly indebted to Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn who offered me to participate for the first time in this Forum.

Excellencies, let me conclude by thanking the Federal Government of  Ethiopia for being the host for this forward-looking event. Somalia owes you for this endeavor. You are a true friend!