Somaliland goes for direct donor aid, to bypass Somalia


HARGEISA, Somalia - Somaliland has devised a new strategy to bypass Mogadishu, with the region now pushing for direct donor funding, a drift from the traditional approach where Somalia gets the donations before sharing it equally among all federal states.

For over three decades, Somalia has been treated as a federal republic with six states, but Somaliland has been pushing for a two-state solution, a move that has often faced hurdles on the international stage. The international community treats the country as one state.

But Somaliland, which runs a parallel government with its own Central Bank, had written to international partners, asking to be treated as a separate country in terms of donations. The aid usually comes through Somalia.

This appeal was articulated in a detailed letter from Somaliland's Ministry of Planning, led by Ahmed Mohamed Diriye (Toorno), Minister of Planning and National Development. The region has been pushing for statehood

"We acknowledge and appreciate the ongoing support of our partners," he said, "and must underline the critical need for direct interaction through official channels, which is consistent with international guidelines on aid."

In the correspondence, the minister also insisted that the aid should remain neutral, devoid of being linked to political conflicts within the region. Somaliland recently signed an agreement with Ethiopia over sections of the Red Sea, a move which irked Somalia.

It should focus on uplifting the well-being of all individuals, including vulnerable groups, irrespective of their political affiliations, the letter reads. Despite lacking formal diplomatic recognition, the letter points out that many states have successfully received aid through special arrangements.

Somaliland region declared self-determination in 1991 but the international community maintains its part of Somalia, thus the current established protocols on sharing of assistance from global powerhouses who send donations to Somalia.


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