Somalia’s Ministry embroiled in scandal again after facilitating visa seekers


Somalia’s Labor Ministry is again fighting to salvage its reputation after it targets an international conference as a way to facilitate entrance visas to persons.

The aimed conference is International Labor Conference which is due to happen in Swiss city of Geneva, and the Somali Labor Minister Salah Ahmed Jama had written official conference “visa letters” for Somali delegation including persons the Minister is vouching for their status as workers delegates, which they can take to the Swiss embassy in Nairobi for a visa stamp.

Minister Jama had nominated officers from his Ministry and Puntland Labor Minister Abdirahman Sheikh Ahmed and Director of Puntland Labor Ministry as official government delegates who will be attending International Labor Conference, though Minister Jama negated other regional labor Ministers of Galmudug, Hirshabelle, Southwest and Jubaland from attending the conference.

Officials of excluded Regional States criticised Minister Jama, however the later claimed that World Bank wants Puntland Labor Minister to be included in the delegation, resulting regional officials to blame Minister Jama for deliberate marginalisation of four Regional States and insulting his assigned national authority.

One wisecrack doing the rounds, Minister Jama, through an official letter to the UN’s labor organisation, accredited six visa seekers whom he duplicitously certified as workers delegates.

Consistent with the letter written by Somali Labour Minister Salah Jama, Mr. Mohamed Osman Haji Ali was attributed as a delegate to Geneva conference while knowing that Mohamed Osman travelled to the United States of America several months before and crossed US-Canada border, and is now requesting asylum in Canada.

Officials of Labor Ministry revealed a similar incident where Minister Salah Jama ascribed in 2017 conference delegation an asylum seeker in Finland as workers delegate.

Director General of Labor Ministry Mr Mohamed Adde critiqued that rightful officers of the Ministry are left out and “strangers who know nothing about labor are allowed to join labor conferences”.

Lately Minister Salah Jama allegedly groaned that Office of Prime Minister of Somalia is compelling him to present to ILO credentials of individuals who are not representing workers but preferred by politicians in the government.

Through investigation Mareeg unearthed four of the six persons accredited as workers delegates for ILO conference hail from same clan of Prime Minister of Somalia and one of the four is younger brother of PM’s staffer. It was immediately unclear the Prime Minister Hassan Kheyre was aware of this undue influence and collusion.

The four were identified as Ahmed Hassan Omar, Said Ali Mohamed, Yaqub Ali Moalim and Abdilkadir Awil  Mohamud who are expected to appear before Embassy of Switzerland on Tuesday, May 22.

This latest scandal emphases the level institutional graft, favouritism and cronyism by Labor Ministry.

Somali Prime Minister Hassan Ali Kheyre avowed to fight endemic political corruption and flawed governance by Somalia’s political elite but remains to be seen what he will do about blatant corruption and maladministration at the Labor Ministry