– A delegation of some of Somalia’s key international partners today visited Jowhar, the capital of Hirshabelle state, as part of their series of consultations ahead of a number of key processes the country faces in 2020.
“As 2019 draws to a close, we are reflecting on the progress made this year, and looking ahead to 2020 as a critical year for Somalia. We are here in Hirshabelle to engage with a range of stakeholders, to hear their views on how key national priorities can be achieved in 2020 – these include preparations for ‘one-person, one-vote’ elections, finalisation of the Federal Constitution, continued progress towards debt relief, and the fight against Al-Shabaab,” said the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Somalia, James Swan.
“Ahead of this critical year, representatives of some of Somalia’s multilateral partners are engaging with national authorities, Federal Member States, elders and civil society, and we are grateful to Hirshabelle authorities for hosting us today,” he added.
The UN envoy was speaking on his behalf and that of his fellow delegation members: the Deputy Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission, Simon Mulongo; the European Union’s (EU) Ambassador to Somalia, Nicolas Berlanga; and a Senior Advisor of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), Jamal Ahmed Ibrahim.
In addition to meeting with a wide range of civil society representatives, youth, traditional elders and clan leaders, the delegation also met with Hirshabelle’s President Mohamed Abdi Ware and other government officials.
Noting the country’s goals for 2020 are achievable with the strong collaboration among all stakeholders, the delegation encouraged “all Somali leaders, institutions and communities to engage in dialogue to agree a way forward, and to cooperate to realise the priorities for the year ahead.”
The delegation also reiterated that it looks forward to hearing from representatives in other Federal Member States as it continues it visits, and to supporting Somalia in fulfilling the national priorities it has committed to in 2020.