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The Scrap Merchants & Desirous Syndrome

Since I wrote my last article titled Prof Lewis and the Scrap merchants of Mogadishu a flood of emails poured into my email account. The most intriguing and interesting emails I have received came from Dahabo Isse and Dr. M Gure. While I have managed to decode Mr. Gure’s email, which was a frank response that he acknowledged my article, apart from trying to patronise me he did not add anything to the debate and thus we await his response. I would like to share with you the following message, which was sent by Mr M Gure.

Berri baan ku arki adigoo Lewis caayi. Flattering me and insulting my brother is not something you should be happy about and defend.

Mr. Gure and his allies seem to be changing the debate into a personal slinging match which centres around Prof Lewis. It seems that Mr. Gure is not defending the merchants and thus agrees with the honourable professor and my point of view. The email he has sent follows the pattern of his article, which focused the supposed slur that Prof Lewis made against Abdirahman Jama Barre. Prof Lewis did not call that gentlemen “ignorant” but said that he was a “useless foreign minister”. Now I would like to ask Mr Gure; Are you defending Mr Abdirahman Jama Barre in the capacity of foreign minister of Somalia?

Another somewhat amusing email was sent by a Miss Dahabo Isse. Dahabo Isse unknown to me was another contributor to the attempt to character assassinate Prof Lewis for the article “Scrap merchants of Mogadishu”. Miss Isse on her email tries to kill more than two birds with a single rock, in this case pitting Somaliland against Puntland while trying to highjack the Agenda.

The following is the email of Dahab;
Walaal Egaal waan arkay maqaalkaagii aad ku qortay, waxaadse qalaad ka fahamtay waxaa an difaaceyno. Haddii aad si fican u akhriso maqaalkii keyga anigu tuugo iyo burcad ma difaacin mana xaqirin ax yaabaha ka socda somaliland iyo puntland, laakiin waxaan diiday in la generalisgareeyo dadk, waad ogtahay oo dad badan oo wanaagsan ayaa usc ka mid ah. Waan ognahay gaalkaaa beryo ayuu goboladaas caayi jiray, beri nimanka aad sheegeysaan haddey laaluush siiyaan berito ayuu idinku soo jeesan doonaa. Anigu wixii aad sheegtay ma xaaradayo, laakiin shaqsiyaad iyo beelo waa kala duwan yihiin. Ninkii rabo inuu wax ka sheego magacya dad oo tuugonimo u bareeray waa gooni, laakiin qabiilo dhan oo sheikh iyo shariif ku jiro in la wada simo waa wax xun. Tan kale walaale puntland cabdulahi yusuf wax uu ka wado waan ognahay, xadaarad iyo horumari kama jirto, ninkii diidana wuu dilayaa ee ha la simin somaliland, badda barina sun ku shubay uu lacag ku Iibsaday. Haddii aad is tiraahdeen Hawiye keliya ayaa tun la fuulo lah, taasi waa macne kale Gaala jecliysigana iyo difaacadeedana awalba waa lagu kala dheereyn jiray.

Walaasha Dahabo

The progress of Somaliland and Puntland is one that no one can doubt. While Somaliland has always had a great balance within the Somali state, as it was the other partner in the 1960 union. Puntland has been a surprise and it is that I will concentrate on. Unbeknown to Mogadishu and hidden from the radar of the political ambitious politicians and too far for the warlords. Puntland has been transformed in less than a decade from a so-called barren desert to a prosperous region. Looking at its cities Bossaso, Las Anod, Galkacyu, Las-Qoray Garowe, Burtinle, Qardo have all had great investment put into them, for example Bossaso can not be compared to any city in Soamlia. It telephone sector was the first to be set up post civil war in 1992. Its success has totally thrown the belief that Somalia and its economy is dependent on Mogadishu. Considering that before 1990 Bossaso was a mere village in comparison to Mogadishu, Kismayu and Hargaysa. According to the World Bank study, Puntland is one of the five best fishing areas in the world. Dear Dahabo it seems that you don’t understand that there are more than 8 towns in Puntland that have internet services and thriving electricity and water purification factories.

Now Dahabo seems to suffer from the same ailment that was initially diagnosed to another would be political Professor by the name of Abdi Ismail Samatar. This syndrome, which is called the Desirous Syndrome, has been known to affect a number of so called Somali intellectuals. A.I. Samatar is a highly educated geography tutor, who seems to meddle persistently in Somali politics and give the impression to be occupied with the defence of the hapless Abdiqasin Salad and in belittling the states of Somaliland and Puntland famously calling them “Balaayo-lands” and accusing Prof Lewis of being a clonialist just because he was a critic of Arta. Mr. AI Samatar is forever infamous in Puntland and will never be forgiven for his arrogance and folly when he refered to Puntlanders as “jealous” for their desire to acknowledge that Bosaso has its own university and call their city a borough. For him to so easily slight Somaliland and Puntland to personally attack Professors Lewis and Galaydh and his steadfast support of Arta and reverence for Abdiqasim Salad shows that tragically Mr. AI Samatar like Dahabo Isse suffers of the desirous Syndrome.

It seems that this anti Lewis alliance have come out fighting for the cause of the clan, to defend the clan to keep the prestige of the clan intact. Now what clan on earth would want the defence of MM Gure and Dahabo? In summary the problem is one of differentiating fact from fiction, that Puntland is a one man show is fiction. That Somaliland cannot survive on its own is fiction. That Mogadishu has no scrap industry is fiction. That the Somali professors know best is fiction. That Arta is a government is fiction. That I.M Lewis is against a single Somali clan is fiction. That I wrote this is a fact.

[1] For more information please refer to the following links and

Omar Egaal <>

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