Corruption, incompetence: EU calls for credible new Somali government
NAIROBI - The European Union called Tuesday for a credible government in Somalia after the mandate of the current transitional authority, accused of rampant corruption, expires in August.
Donors have ruled out extending the term of its eight-year-old Transitional Federal Government, which has failed to deliver on its mandate, and are backing efforts to set up a new administration.
"The outside world could satisfy itself by just ticking 100 boxes and saying something's being done," Alexander Rondos, the EU special representative for Somalia, told reporters in Nairobi.
"The issue is, what is going to be good and right for Somalis (is what) the Somalis themselves would judge is appropriate for their own political dispensation."
Under a new roadmap supported by Somalia's Western donors, the country has to draft a new constitution, hold elections and improve security among other tasks in order to set up its next government.
Analysts have warned against imposing a political system on the clan-based nation, where several international bids to establish an effective central government have failed to reverse 21 years of lawlessness and bloodletting.
"Let's not cock up things (from) outside. The issue is what do Somalis feel they can live with. That to me is the litmus test," said Rondos.
"We should make sure that there is a clearly discernible, demonstrable new political system that is emerging."
The absence of a government with a nationwide authority in Somalia has seen the country carved up by warlords, extremist militia and pirates ruling vast regions while civilians have been plagued by lawlessness, hunger and death.
Neighbouring countries Ethiopia and Kenya have sent troops to crush the Al Qaeda-affiliated Shebab militia, the latest prominent armed group blamed for hampering peace efforts in the Horn of Africa country.
A multi-nation African Union force is also protecting the government in Mogadishu and has stifled Shebab efforts to overthrow it.