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Somalia’s parliament approves new prime minister

#Somalias #parliament #approves #prime #minister

Somalia’s parliament on Saturday unanimously confirmed Hamza Abdi Barre as the new prime minister, paving the way for the formation of a new government for the troubled Horn of Africa nation.

All 220 MPs present approved Barre’s appointment and he was then sworn into office, the speaker said.

Barre 48, told parliament he would form a “high-quality” government that would focus on “establishing overall political stability (in line with) the President’s motto of a reconciled Somalia at peace with the world.” .

Somalia’s new government faces a series of challenges, including a looming famine and a bitter insurgency by al-Shabaab jihadists.

The MP from the semi-autonomous state of Jubaland was elected earlier this month by President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, who was elected by parliament in May after a lengthy and tumultuous voting process.

“Our government has an ambitious political program aimed at improving our security, strengthening our economy and providing basic services to our people,” Mohamud said on Twitter after Barre was approved.

“Let’s move forward together.”

There is hope that Mohamud’s presidency will put an end to a brewing political crisis that has crushed the rule of his predecessor Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed and threatened to plunge the country back into violent chaos.

Mohamud himself did not appear for the parliamentary session after saying on Friday he had tested positive for Covid-19.

“So far I have no symptoms but I will continue to self-isolate and serve the people of Somalia from my home,” he said on Twitter after returning from the United Arab Emirates, where he was making his first official foreign trip since being elected had undertaken May 15.

Mohamud is a former academic and peace activist who previously served as president from 2012 to 2017, but his first term was marred by allegations of corruption and power struggles.

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