Want to receive more corruption report updates? Somalia ranks among the world’s most corrupt countries. Insecurity is also a major issue; the ongoing instability greatly restricts business. Corrupt government officials tolerate illegal activities in return for bribes. Dysfunctional institutions facilitate an environment of lawlessness, and the absence of any form of regulatory framework hinders prospects of economic competitiveness. Business is based on patronage networks, and tight monopolies dominate the market. Somalia’s Provisional Constitution criminalizes several forms of corruption (including abuse of office, embezzlement and bribery); however, implementation is non-existent.
Somalia Corruption Report
The governing elite is continuously involved in allegations of embezzlement of public funds from the already meager Somalian coffers. Finally, bribery is commonplace in all sectors, and procurement contracts frequently involve corruption. Businesses face a high corruption risk when dealing with the courts. Corruption is rife within the security apparatus. The Somali National Army is the country’s most important security institution. It suffers rampant corruption: Army leaders have systematically inflated troop numbers to obtain greater funding. Businesses are likely to face extensive corruption in the customs sector. Public procurement in Somalia holds high corruption risks for business. The natural resources industries are jeopardized by corruption and insecurity. Licensing in the natural resources sector is also challenged by the absence of a regulatory system and widespread corruption. In one ongoing corruption case, the British company Soma Oil rather, it changed its strategy and point of attack to the southern regions where there was far more violence, chaos, and anarchy to exploit. For several years, the Islamists went underground and quietly reorganized under the radar. Then, in 1996, they announced a new organization called Al-Itahad al-Islamiya, based in Gedo in the southwest, near the Ethiopian and Kenyan borders.42 Here, warlords and tribal leaders had only a very loose handle. Al-Itahad al-Islamiya perceived a power vacuum and sought to take advantage of it.
Sheikh Dahir Aweys, previously defeated by northeastern warlord Abdulahi Yusuf Ahmed in1992, resurfaced as the organization’s leader.43 The radicals started to collect weapons and impose Sharia on locals without clan leaders’ assent. Before long, Al-Itahad al-Islamiya had placed its own regional and town administrators in direct opposition to existing clan leadership. With the menace growing ever more foreboding, local leaders tried to negotiate with the Islamists, advising them to lay their weapons down and resume peaceful teaching duties instead. The militant group rejected the offer and killed some influential members of the clan-family to assert that they were serious. 42 Andre Le Sage, Prospects for Al Itihad & Islamist Radicalism in Somalia. Review of African Political Economy, Vol. 43 Chris Tomlinson. “Target of Somalia air strike was one of the FBI’s most wanted.” The Independent. A long debate ensued as the southern Somali clan base sought an appropriate course of action. Mareehaan – Darood warlord Omar Haji Mohamed, former Defense Minister helped steer the discussion toward Ethiopia. It was decided to seek military assistance.
Now Sheikh Aweys made another mistake by operating outside of his Hawiye clan’s territory. Combined Ethiopian and native forces proceeded to defeat the Islamists in the Gedo region. Al-Itahad al-Islamiya was essentially nullified as a threat to southern Somalia. Twice-defeated, Aweys and the remnants of his militia retreated to Mogadishu, where his Hawiye clan dominates. It could no longer wage war against any clan militia near the Somali-Ethiopian border. The Islamists were neutralized, but all was not well. Old problems continued to afflict Somalia. 44 D. Ignatius, “Ethiopia’s Iraq. Washington Post,” 13 May 2007 , sec. Violent turmoil and lawlessness which killed many Somalis and denied many more the right and ability to work and feed themselves. Lack of international support in addressing the need for national reconciliation in forming an inclusive, credible government. The United States and its Ethiopia ally rushing to judgment in characterizing all devoted Somali Muslims as radical Jihadists in need of destruction. Washington, in failing to understand the importance of the above issues, missed an opportunity to better its international image and Somalia.
Addressing the ICU with care – via diplomacy and international consensus building – might have gone a long way in easing the United States’ reputation for stereotyping and not quite trying to understand Muslims (or worse, being their enemy). The Islamic world and Africa might have been well-involved in a concerted effort to stabilize Somali. Instead, the U.S. went the route of facilitating more war in a war-torn nation. By financing Ethiopia and Somali warlords in their fight against the Islamists, Washington was perceived by Somalis not as the solution, but part of the problem. In fact, the underhanded maneuvering of Kenyan-based CIA operatives made the extremists more popular, boosting their image as righteous warriors among radicals and traditionalists alike. It is probably not coincidental, therefore, that before Mogadishu fell into the hands of the ICU and imposed a strict interpretation of Sharia law. Somali expert and associate professor of political science at Davidson College in North Carolina, Ken Menkhaus, lamented the consequences of the turn in U.S. Somali policy: ” This is worse than the worst-case scenarios – the exact opposite of what the US government strategy, if there was one, would have wanted”.