Mogadishu, 12 September 2016 (Villa Somalia)– HE Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, the President of the Federal Republic of Somalia, today officially launched in Mogadishu,the Comprehensive National Strategy on Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism (P/CVE) for Somalia.
Among the officials and dignitaries attended the official launch include, the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, cabinet members, parliamentarians and others.
Somali President during his speech of the official event to the launch said:
“I am very pleased that Somalia now has a comprehensive national strategy on P/CVE, which will greatly help us to reduce violent extremism and at the same time to better coordinate all programs and activities relating to Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism (P/CVE). The overwhelming majority of people in Somalia reject violent extremism. Working across government with the active involvement of regional administrations as well as civil society, the Federal Government of Somalia has developed a comprehensive Somali-owned and Somali- led National Strategy and Action Plan for Preventing & Countering Violent Extremism.”
The process for developing this strategy was necessarily inclusive. Over the course of the last ten months, we worked with key stakeholders from the regional administrations, local municipalities, the relevant line ministries, and civil society at the community level including youth groups, organizations focused on empowering women, religious leaders, the diaspora, the private sector, and other partners at the national, regional, and international level. We also carried out an online public consultation in order to reach out to all citizens including Somalis in the Diaspora.
The President continued to say “We, Somali leaders appointed Hon Mustafa Dhuhulow to serve as national CVE Coordinator in September 2015 in order to ensure all relevant agencies are actively involved and that they work together as a team with our Federal Regions and alongside our civil society and private sector partners. The aim of this strategy is to outline a clear vision for countering (once it is happening) and preventing (before it has happened) violent extremism. This will be based on a better understanding of the process of recruitment and the drivers of violent extremism as well as the development of sufficient capacity to support resilience within communities so they can live and prosper in a more peaceful Somalia.”
Somali President thanked co-authors of the strategy and said “I would like to thank the leadership of Hon Mustafa Dhuhulow as CVE Coordinator and Abdirahman Omar Osman (Eng. Yarisow), Senior Advisor to the Federal Government of Somalia, as they have steered the process of developing the National Strategy.” I would also like to thank the European Union for its support during the devising of the strategy through Blueprint Somalia.
‘’We now have a well written strategy, so I ask all institutions of the Federal Government and Federal member states as well as our vibrant civil society to fully engage with the National coordinators so that we together can implement the strategy and that is why there is an Action Plan within the strategy that require our collective and urgent timely implementation. In order to ensure that the national strategy meets our higher expectations there is a monitoring and evaluation section that we need to regularly review’’, said the President.
‘’Neither is our strategic approach to the prevention and countering of it. We need to ensure that our strategy is always fit for purpose so we will continually recalibrate our efforts to address this complex problem. The National Strategy will be regularly updated based on assessments that evaluate our implementation efforts, measure the impact those efforts, account for new findings and data from research and take into consideration any significant changes that have occurred in the threat or information landscape’’.
The President added that this strategy will serve as an integral part of national security.
“The reason we needed to have a national strategy is that our children and youth are often victims of the scourge of radicalization and violence. Violent extremists are also actively recruiting children, some of whom are barely teenagers; therefore, it is our own national interest. Furthermore, military alone cannot bring peace and stability and that is why we needed Prevention and countering of violent extremism in our country. This strategy is an integral part of our National Security Architecture. The Federal Government of Somalia’s comprehensive approach to countering terrorism focuses on the possible causes of terrorism and the development of remedial strategies’’.
President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud has also emphasized the need to address the UN’s call to the member states to develop national strategy for CVE.
“Since Violent Extremism is a global phenomenon it is also essential that we work closely with our international partners. The Secretary- General of the United Nations recently recommended that each Member State develop a national plan of action to prevent violent extremism which sets national priorities for addressing the local drivers of violent extremism. Therefore, Somalia is very pleased to have fulfilled the call of the Secretary General of the UN and as a result we have developed action plans that came through a through consultation and engagement from a wide range of government institutions, regional authorities, civil society groups such as youth, women, traditional and religious leaders, the media and the private sector”.
Somalia President concluded to say “I am very encouraged by the progress made in towards the inclusive process that has gone into this strategy and have no doubt that the guidance this document provides will help Somalia to become more resilient and find the lasting peace that we all want and deserve. This is a living document. It will be reviewed and recalibrated regularly to meet and address changing circumstances. I urge you to read it carefully, internalize it, engage with it and share it – and then assist us to implement it.”