PM Khaire To Reshuffle Cabinet & Appoint 6 New Ministers
A cabinet reshuffle and ministerial appointments are in the offing following a series a meetings between Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo, Prime Minister Hassan Khaire and the new Speaker of the Lower House Mohamed Mursal. The reshuffle follows resignations of several Ministers and Deputy Ministers that goes back to 2017. The vacant portfolios are the Defence Ministry which had been held by Speaker Mursal since November 2017. Mursal had replaced Abdirashid Abdullahi Mohamed who quit under unclear circumstances. January 21 embattled Mayor of Mogadishu Thabit Mohamed Abdi was replaced by Information Minister Abdirahman Osman Yarisow and his position is yet to be filled three months later. Religious Affairs Minister Iman Abdullahi Abdi who later contested for Speaker position was fired the same day Mursal was appointed Minister. Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management portfolio fell vacant in November 2017 with the resignation of Minister Dr. Maryan Qasim. The speaker race saw Abdiaziz Hassan Mohamed State Minister Trade and Commerce and his deputy Ibrahim Isaaq Yarow resign. But this will not only be a portfolio replacement according to an insider at the Office of the Prime Minister. Two ministers are expected to be swapped positions based on their past performance. Khaire has a delicate balancing act to do in the appointments of the new Ministers. "He will have to put in consideration individuals who backed him in the ousting of Speaker Jawari and the election of Speaker Mursal. These were two major political battles he faced and it is that time to reward or face political consequences" Daud Hussien an analyst told Radio Dalsan. "The opposition are likely to gain more Mps on their side from the dissatisfied lot after the appointments. Pledges were most likely made.That has been a common pattern in the Somali politics. Khaire could reverse this by honoring his pledges which may be challenging in the Somali political scenario" Hussien said. Out of 265 Mps who voted on April 30 147 voted for executive backed Mursal while the opposition threw their weight behind Ibrahim Yarow with 118 votes. Prime Minister Khaire is expected to fly to the Central Somalia coastal town of Hobyo in Galmudug state to launch the construction of Galkaio-Hobyo road with the cabinet appointment and reshuffle expected anytime.