The Somali Government: Starting from scratch

The Oslo Center is in partnership with the NDI, working with Somalia’s transitional administration to develop its central leadership and decision-making structures. In August, the Oslo Center met with the Director Generals from all key ministries for a three-day training process.

“The Somali government is perhaps the weakest in the world. They are starting from scratch and many of the Director Generals even lack access to their own office space. They work with mobile phones as their only tool. The Director Generals did utilize the opportunity to obtain advice on organizing and structuring which may prove relevant to the Somali context,” says Øistein Mjærum, Chief of Staff at the Oslo Center for Peace and Human Rights.

Somalia remains one of the world’s most dramatic examples of a ‘failed state’. Somalia has been without an effective central government since President Siad Barre was deposed in 1991. In 2004 the main warlords and politicians signed a deal to set up a new parliament, which appointed President Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed. A former leader of Puntland, he pledged to promote reconciliation and to set about rebuilding the country.

The National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI) has been working in Somalia since November 2005, conducting capacity-building training in support of the country’s transitional governing institutions.

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