Today from Hiiraan Online:
Building a Luxury Home for Farmajo is The Mother of All Smoke Screens
By Dekow Diriye Sagar
Thursday June 9, 2022
If you have been shocked and outraged by Farmajo's fundraising campaign for a lavish home when millions of Somalis are dying of hunger and thirst and the country is facing one of the worst drought, famine, and humanitarian catastrophes, I have some news for you. The fundraising for the luxurious house is just the appetizer, and I'm afraid there are more sinister projects in the pipeline. It's not unusual or unheard of for a politician to organize and conduct fundraising events, but the intent and articulated purposes of this specific initiative alarmed any logical person with a shred of morals and dignity. Most reasonable people initially thought it to be a political prank, but two critical questions emerged as the dust settled. The first question is, does he actually need a house?
First, Farmajo doesn't need the impoverished people of Somalia to collect dimes to build a house for him. He is approaching the noble age of retirement and worked most of his adult life. He served as the 8th President of the Federal Republic of Somalia and is an honorary member of the Somali parliament. He is not raising any underage child and earns a constitutionally granted substantial pension to sustain the rest of his life. Therefore, there is no logical or moral justification for this initiative. In fact, it's an embarrassment to the Somali people. I don't believe the project will materialize. Don't get me wrong, those with shared psychosis or self-induced delusions will donate. However, he will probably divert the money for self-enrichment purposes. Only time will tell.
So, a second question needs to be answered. What is the intention of this fundraising campaign? There are multiple reasons to explore.
First, for the past few years, Farmajo perfected the art of monetizing his political failures. After running from the Premier role in 2011, he launched "Qaraan Qaran (loosely translates as National Fundraising). By playing the victim card, he raised millions of dollars from the Somalis on the prospects of fighting foreign financial influence. However, he was sleeping with the alleged enemy before his first Anniversary. To refresh your memory, in April 2021, his then finance minister, Abdirahman Beyle, went live on Facebook to solicit public donations on behalf of the government. Mr. Beyle stated financial support and subsidies from donor countries have declined, and the government is facing a significant budget shortfall. In a nutshell, Farmajo has an undying desire to solicit money.
Secondly, Farmajo's administration was marred by widespread corruption, power abuse, and misappropriation of public funds. In 2018, Somali Auditor General reported massive corruption in the annual financial audit. The Auditor-General stated over 18 million ended up in offshore accounts. In most cases, external donations were either underreported or misreported in the General Government Ledgers. Instead of taking necessary corrective action, Farmajo and his cronies motioned to dismiss the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance to install more puppet finance committees stripped of any oversight responsibilities. Since then, his administration failed to disclose or conduct annual audits. Therefore, it is reasonable to consider that the fundraising events are being used to cover up financial misappropriation and massive corruption that has become the trademark of his administration. It's noteworthy that Farmajo received infinite foreign money during the election campaign. It's believed he paid millions during the parliamentary elections to support his political allies. According to anecdote information, only one Presidential candidate paid more bribes to MPs the night before the election than Farmajo. Insiders argue the objective of the fundraising event is to cover up any potential money laundering while also attempting to whitewash the massive loot. He managed to package and dramatize the fundraising in a way to buy public affection. If Somalia were a safe and stable country, Farmajo would be the kind of politician who would travel to a remote village only to sleep in a tent or thatch house to dramatize "good governance" and portray himself as a servant leader. No other current Somali politician possesses such cunning traits.
The so-called fundraising event's third and most important objective is geared toward the 2026 political campaign. Farmajo made major political miscalculations during his tenure. These include, among others, pursuing term extension that led to bloodshed, sabotaging the election process, attempting to assassinate his political rivals, paying idle youth to promote propaganda, militarizing political differences, and using public funds to troll his opponents, among others. Therefore, the ulterior motive of the fundraising for a luxurious house is to rebuild his tarnished reputation. During the 2017 election, he played the victim's card to solicit sympathy from the Somali people and to get elected.
Contrary to the public claim, Farmajo and his team organized and engineered the fundraising event. In addition to the self-enrichment objective that became his hallmark, the real intention is to provide a biased interpretation of the events to influence public opinion through perverse propaganda. He does this by appealing to the greed of useful idiots because, politically, it pays the best dividends.
Most importantly, I believe, Farmajo is on a mission to create not only new talking points but alternative truths. Why? Because to him, truth has always been very inconvenient. He tried to govern with propaganda, disinformation, promoting fake news, trolling on social media, and other clever tricks. Now he plans to utilize previous tactics to create a political presence by establishing himself as a shadow president for the next four years as he prepares himself as a viable candidate in 2026, which will be a dangerous ambition to pursue.
In summation, Farmajo already created a dangerous cult that poses more threat than Al-Shabab. I say so because most Somalis agree on how to confront violent terrorist groups, but no one seems to know how to confront the beliefs of millions whose minds have been hijacked by a dangerous abuser. In addition, the delusional narrative they harbor is not only dangerous but explosive. Because Farmajo has no limits or shame, he will be obsessively and relentlessly at their service. Of course, in a settled manner.
Dekow Diriye Sagar
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