Is Puntland’s Ali Gaas slowly becoming unpopular?

Puntland President Aduweli Mohamed Gaas

When it come to Somalia politics , Abdiweli Gas is loved and loathed in equal measures. Mr Gas brought many things to Somalia , but harmony was not one of them. From his never ending wrangle with the former President Sheikh Shariff Sheikh Ahmed to his current divide and rule style are to the current team at Villa Somalia, the man is never short of controversy. He was , and remains, the most divisive and controversial political figure in modern Somalia.

President Ali Gaas of Puntland administration in Somalia has lately bounced back into national political arena, but not as a Prime Minister of the interim Federal government of Somalia, a position he once held, but as the president of the Puntland administration.

He once so often blasts at the federal government, a move seen by many as to overshadow a growing political upheaval at his backyard.

Puntland is the mother of federalism in Somalia and has always had a good case to lead, but is now losing the moral courage to hold its forward position.

It seems the president (Ali Gaas) is diverting attention of serious leadership issues, including the state military payment problems, like those facing the federal troops,” Abdullahi Warfa, a Somali political commentator, saysHe continues, “Moreover, current president, a one-time prime minister, is neither able to feel the big shoes left behind by former president Farole, who unlike Gas, was able to show a definitive leadership on where Puntland stood, where one disagreed or not federalism.” Farole, his predecessor, has pushed for transitional federal institution and has created a reasonably functioning state institution. He similarly introduced tax collection while ignoring the strong clan politics.

President Gaas with federal leadship in Mogadishu
President Gaas with federal leadship in Mogadishu

Latest comments he made for or against the federal government has poised Ali Gaas as a political figure that is slowly degenerating to a petty clan politics, political analyst Warfa opines. “It’s a way of shrugging off the difficult, but important political reality in Puntland. It’s not what is expected of a man who led the old administration in the country,” he said, adding that the old positive leadership of Gaas is so much needed today than ever.

President Ali Gaas, however was a strong unifying leader at the time he was the Prime Minister of Somalia. He pushed for the national agenda and globe-trotted for the recognition and an international aid for the country that was reeling from civil strife

Many analysts are calling on the president Ali Gaas to change his attitude towards the federal government in a bid to safe his reputation as national political figure.


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