Eleven Somalian ministers resign in protest

Other News Materials 3 August 2008 15:10 (UTC +04:00)

Eleven ministers in Somalia's transitional federal government resigned on Saturday from the cabinet after accusing Prime Minister Nur Hassan Hussein of usurping the powers of the Mogadishu mayor, one of the ministers said Sunday, dpa reported.

Khadija Mohamed Dirie, Minister of Women's and Family Affairs, told Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa of the development.

He said the resignations came in protest "because we have seen mismanagement of power and state funds of the prime minister, who is popularly known as Nur Adde.

"He (Nur Adde) also sacked the mayor of Mogadishu without consulting after he declared it was a decision reached ... during a cabinet meeting," Dirie said.

Among those who resigned from the transition government were Foreign Minister Abdi Mohamed Tarah, Deputy Prime Minister Salim Aliyow Ibrow, and Defence Minister Muhideen Mohamed Hajji.

Other ministers to resign included those of the posts of minerals and energy, post and telecommunications, reconciliation and regional development, industries and tourism, and housing.

Six of the 11 to resign are allies of President Abdullahi Yusuf, who has had strong differences with Hussein after the prime minister had sacked Mogadishu mayor and governor Mohamed Omer Habeeb.

The prime minister later called a press conference to deny any resignations had taken place.

"Up to now, we have not had any resignation documents" from the resigned ministers, Nur Adde told reporters in Mogadishu.

"This may have another aim to create political dilemma about the peace process signed in Djibouti," he added, referring to the peace accord in May to try to resolve a more than decade long internal conflict among the country's warlords.