Thursday, 14 July 2011

Towards a Land-Based Solution for Somali Piracy

Rethinking the Cure: Towards a Land-Based Solution for Somali Piracy

Rashid Abdi, Maritime Counter Piracy Conference | 11 Apr 2011

Because the TFG has struggled to steer the process of devolution, impatient local communities in the periphery have, over the last four years, been busy rebuilding the rudiments of regional state institutions, improving inter-communal harmony, and experimenting with a quasi-democratic and consensual style of governance. In this, they are mimicking similar processes in Somaliland and Puntland. It is true, however, that some of these emerging self-governing regional polities are far from stable, and the gains they have made remain highly tenuous and reversible.

Nevertheless, there is little doubt that the “revolt against the centre,” and attempts to create viable local administrations, are genuine, organic and underpinned by a remarkable degree of popular support — a political development that stands in stark contrast with the hopeless situation in Mogadishu, where a weak and discredited TFG appears out of sync with the wishes and aspirations of its people. While it may not appear immediately obvious, international support for these fragile entities and “recovery” pockets in central and northern Somalia is the best means to banish the piracy menace from Somalia.

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