Somali President sacks PM amid growing row

December 14th, 2008 - 5:38 pm ICT by IANS  

Mogadishu, Dec 14 (Xinhua) Somali President Abdulahi Yusuf Ahmed Sunday sacked Prime Minister Nur Hassan Hussein, accusing him of incompetence, embezzlement and mismanagement. The two senior Somali leaders have been in deep disagreement over a variety of issues including the way Somali national reconciliation is being handled.

Speaking to his supporters at the presidential residence in the southern town of Baidoa, the president said he took the decision “to relieve the prime minister of his duties because his government failed to deliver what was expected of it.”

“The government has been incompetent, and there were a lot of embezzlement and mismanagement that made it unable to fulfil its obligation,” the Somali president told a group of lawmakers and reporters at his residence in Baidoa, the seat of the parliament.

President Yusuf pledged to name a new prime minister, the third since the current transitional Somali government was formed in 2004.

Prime Minister Hussein has been at the forefront of the UN-brokered peace talks with a major opposition group which have led to a power sharing deal, but President Yusuf has expressed dissatisfaction with the agreement, characterizing it as “a clan deal.”

The president refused to endorse new ministers appointed by the Prime Minister, following the resignation of 10 pro-President ministers who were excluded from the newly nominated cabinet.

Reports from Baidoa say parliament was due to meet later Sunday to debate and vote on a new cabinet and the peace and power sharing agreement, under which the current transitional parliament will be doubled, extend the government’s interim period and elect a new leadership for the war-torn Horn of Africa country.

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