It is important to note that state building initiatives in Somalia has been dominated by external actors, making the process cumbersome, lengthy, and ineffective. It is time Somalia takes over the driver’s seat and pursues a state building project relying on home- grown solutions.
Experience elsewhere illustrates that a home-grown project offers better prospects of success than an externally influenced initiative. Our sisterly nation of Rwanda is an exemplary case where a home- grown state building process has led to the emergence of a capable state that serves as an excellent model for other conflict affected countries like Somalia.
Somalia can embark on a path to peace, unity, reconciliation, security, stability, economic development, and social prosperity if it gets its state building project right. Only an endogenous, Somali inspired, Somali – centred and Somali – led process can bring much needed success to ongoing efforts.
In heralding a functional and durable process, Somalia should start at the inception level by enabling Somali – driven expertise through state building research that should identify the critical and most pressing issues with view to finding a lasting endogenous solution to statebuilding.
Currently, no comprehensive Somali conceived research data on state building exists, and therefore, the Somali government should commission a Somali led study involving all stakeholders including the FGS, FMSs, academia, civil society and other relevant stakeholders. Somalia’s international partners should only take a secondary, supportive role.
A Somali inspired research focusing on capable statehood will certainly produce the blueprint required to initiate a state building project that has the potential to create state capacities at the legal, policy, and institutional levels.
Deeq S Yusuf
(Deeq is a Social Scientist based in Mogadishu – Somalia)