Puntland Stakeholders’ Public Discussion on the National Strategy and Action Plan for Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism (P/CVE) for Somalia
Garowe, 01 December 2016 – Hon Mustafa Duhulow, CVE Coordinator for Somalia praised the efforts of Mr Abdullahi Farah (Dihal), Puntland Director of CVE for his leadership in organizing today’s Puntland Stakeholders’ Public Discussion in Garowe regarding the National Strategy and Action Plan for Preventing & Countering Violent Extremism for Somalia. Attendees included Anisa Haji Mumin, Minister of Women, Ahmed Osman Elmi, Minister of Interior, Dr Mohamed Ali Farah, Deputy Minister of Education, Hon Abdi Hosh, Hon Dhahar Ali, Governor Omar Faraweyne, religious leaders, activists, members of the civil society and representatives from international partners.
Abdullahi Farah (Dihal), CVE Director of Puntland stressed the importance of countering violent extremism and said “The aim of today’s event is to discuss the role of Puntland Stakeholders in the implementation of the Action Plan and the National Strategy for CVE. Since Somalia now has a comprehensive national strategy for Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism (P/CVE) it is the right time for communities to come up local leadership in implementing the strategy.”
Abdullahi Farah (Dihal) thanked participants for their valuable time and updated them about the inclusive process of devising the national strategy and said “This document is the result of a rigorous, inclusive process of dialogue and discussion with all the key stakeholders over the last 12 months. For the first time in Somalia we have a strategy that went through an inclusive process to engaging with communities. We even carried out an online public consultation in order to reach out to all citizens including those in the Diaspora. “
Abdullahi Farah, CVE Director of Puntland stated that Puntland is ready to implement the national strategy in order to prevent and counter violent extremism and he continued to say “Terrorists groups are now trying to destabilize Puntland, but I am confident that authorities and communities are ready to work together as they have shown before when ISIS recruited children and young people and brought in Puntland as our security forces stopped them to cause harm to our people. The threat from terrorists is real and we need our unity to confront not only through military means but through implementing the national strategy too. However, since Violent Extremism is a global phenomenon I appeal to our international partners to support Puntland so that it can implement the strategy.”
Hon Mustafa Duhulow, CVE Coordinator for Somalia said “I am very grateful for the commitment and the leadership of Abdullahi Farah (Dihal), Puntland CVE Coordinator for his role during the development of the National Strategy and we are confident that Puntland is commitment to support the subsequent implementation stage. The National Strategy will also advance the National Defector Programme for former combatants encompassing both low- and high-level defectors. Another area that the strategy will focus on is the on-going reconciliation efforts addressing the root causes for citizens joining terrorist groups. Since Somali society is clan based, Al-Shabaab take advantage of existing grievances within communities (such as marginalized groups, neglected rural areas,). Reconciliation can help communities bolster local resilience against Al- Shaabab and at the same time reinforce Somali traditions, values and cultures.”
The National Strategy offers a multi-pronged approach that aims to win the hearts and minds of the people so that we will ultimately have a vibrant and inclusive society that can contribute to bringing peace and stability in Somalia.”