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Unity brings stability – lessons learned from reconciliation efforts in Somalia’s Galmudug region

February 18, 2021
Est. Reading: 2 minutes
Photo credit: Alex Proimos

Reconciliation and state formation in Somalia’s Galmudug region have been greatly challenged by multiple factors. Between 2015-2019, the situation in Galmudug was aggravated as the region was split in two, with separate administrations based in both Dhumasareb and Adado. In 2019, the Ministry of Interior, Federal Affairs and Reconciliation of the federal government, initiated a process to establish a new state for Galmudug. After repeated failed attempts of reconciliation by various parties, this latest process has been met with some success.

The report “Galmudug Reconciliation: Processes, Challenges, and Opportunities Ahead” presents the findings from a field study looking into the characteristics of the political and social reconciliation processes in the Galmudug region. The study was conducted between July and September 2020 by Somali Public Agenda, with support from Interpeace. Data was obtained in the form of in-person and online interviews with 21 key stakeholders, including the former Prime Minister of Somalia, and was complemented by wider literature. The report sheds light on the achievements of the reconciliation process and addresses the remaining challenges to foster sustainable peace in the region.

Results show that the relative success of the latest reconciliation efforts in Galmudug are due to a combination of factors. It illustrates that inclusion beyond political affiliations is necessary for reconciliation to prove fruitful. The state’s current president, Ahmed Abdi Kariye “Qoorqoor”, elected in February 2020, reached an agreement with opposition candidates even before his inauguration, despite them having boycotted the election itself. By reaching out to opposition politicians and forming a diverse state cabinet, Qoorqoor has set an example for the rest of the country, ensuring that the administration has made significant efforts to be inclusive and not restricted to a specific group.

Notwithstanding these promising reconciliation efforts, the state is still fragile and the challenges it faces are numerous. Any chance for success needs to be deeply rooted in inclusion, where stakeholders at all levels participate and co-operate. The report includes a set of policy considerations on political and social reconciliation efforts to help build on the accomplishments gained in the region, but also highlighting the possible challenges ahead. These include the upcoming federal elections, the need for a security sector reform, improving access to justice and investing in water resources, among other factors.

Read full report here.