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Somalia Constitution Survey: Listener Comments

  • VOA Somali

The Somalia Constitution Survey has generated conversation and debate from Somalis living in Somalia and around the world. Many have shared their opinions with the VOA. The following comments represent a sampling of these opinions. You can submit your comments to somali@voanews.com.

Name: Baashi Kilwo Warsame

First, greetings to VOA Somali Service staff. Thank you for standing up and to defending the Somali nation. Secondly, I think it is the right thing that we have a constitution based on Islam though I don’t think this is the right time for constitution because we need Somaliland to be participating the process to making a constitution.

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Name: Mohamed Hussein

Greetings toy all VOA Somali staffers, in particular presenters of the new show Madasha Dastuurka [Constitution Square]. I am a listener who lives in the Dadaab refugee camps in Hagardhere. I want to have my say on this fascinating program which you started airing every Sunday night. Indeed it is a very interesting program, and I commend you for the great effort that you put in, hope that you will air my opinion. In the same way you prepared the last program you should invite different sectors from the society such as Ulema [Muslim Scholars], politicians, intellectuals, youth and women who can interpret the provisions in the constitution and invite those who are not opposed to the constitution…I am one of the youth members in the refugee camp and I hope that you will consider my opinion, and thank you for the good job that you’re doing.

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From: guuleed
Subject: Opinion
Date: Mon, 7 May 2012

This was one of the best programs by VOA; many people are tuning the show. I would suggest that you replay programs like that. The way Sheikh Mohamed Nur Garyare spoke about it [Constitution]… he is one of the moderates who gave the best explanation; it was the best of all the programs I have listened. There aren’t many like Sheikh Garyare in Somalia who can make things understandable, many people are talking about and they feel the same.

I would urge you to continue this program because these discussions are worthy and bring out raw opinions. The time for the program is short.

Thank you.

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Madasha Dastuurka (CONSTITUTION SQUAR)
qofkii sabra guled

It is a program that fits the current situation, because the opinions and discussions are going to affect the life and future of Somalia in the long run, therefore it goes deep and uncovers the truth in an unwavering manner. Also, I want to participate in the discussions.

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Shaafici Ali Elmi

ASC to all management at the VOA station, thanks for this opportunity that you have given to the Somali people who now, can easily air their views here. Particularly I would like to thank Harun Maruf and Falastine Ahmed Iman [He means Sahra Abdi Ahmed] who have produced this program. Dearest, this is Shaafici Ali Elmi. I can be reached on my phone. Thank you.

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Name: Nadara Hajji

My gratitude to the VOA for allowing the Somalis to freely have their opinions heard. In the draft constitutions, it says that regional states have the right to manage their resources, I oppose this because it allows a particular clan controlling the natural resources and wealth of the country and this will lead to clans making their own little fiefdoms; the end is the road to ruins. Thanks.

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Said Abdi Hirsi
Des Moines, IA.

In my opinion, I believe the current draft constitution is suitable for Somalia. Secondly, we have been told that the draft constitution is incomplete and therefore other sectors of the society can contribute so that Somalis could learn how the process works and the systems that work for other countries. People are agitated by provisions about the citizenship and when a person qualifies for citizenship, but they should also understand these are provisions that the parliament will have to legislate and they will have to set certain conditions for qualifying citizenship.

On the issue about Islam, since the constitutions says that Islam is the base and no religion other than Islam can be propagated in Somalia; that Islam is the religion of the government, I don’t know what more people are looking for. It is good to listen to all opinions but we should not let it turn us back to the situation we have passed 20 years ago - turmoil.

P.S. I don’t believe that we should listened to all Muslim scholars, because I don’t believe that we can rely on them with regard to the future f the country and people, because they are part of the problems.

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Name: Awil Ahmed Maalin

Country: South Africa

Message: To: Madasha Dastuurka VOA

I am bemused with one issue; the constitutions does not indicate which part of the world does Somalia locate, the sea and land borders of the country. The conditions for becoming a President whether man or women? I mean some one who is a Canadian citizen can become President. That means we could have a President who has own allegiance to a President from another country. This person cannot defend the interest of Somalis and cannot take up the Somali cause. There are certain limits for each country. Thanks.

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Mahad Salaad

Asc [peace be unto you and so may the mercy of Allah and his blessings]

Greetings, thanks for the job you are doing for the society in your Constitution program which is very entertaining and you are gaining lots of credit for this, I hope.

I am ready to participate in your poll survey. My name is Mahad Salaad Muhumad, I am a student at Islamabad University specializing on Sharia and Constitution. Call me.

Name: Former Health Minister of Galmudug Regional State, Mohamed Hussein Eid

Email: Maxamadciid46@hotmail.com

Country: Somalia MMogadishu

Message: A new constitution is needed for Somalia, it is important. But what is also imperative is that the public have the chance to discuss and take out any unsuitable provisions in it, and there are a lots of them… even the Somali language used for some parts is problematic.

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Muhamed Yusuf

Greetings and Congratulations,

My name is Maxamed yusuf, I am in Hargeisa. The Madasha Dastuurka show is very crucial for this period of time, the way the program is prepared and the guests invited to the program; it is something that earns you lots of confidence as VOA.

The last program which you invited Sheikh M. Garyare & Pro. Abdiwahid was the most interesting and high quality since it focused on “Religion and Constitution”.

Congratulations again, I would like to participate in the opinion survey that you are collecting even though you have not responded to my earlier emails.

My phone: +25224076673
Muhamed Yusuf

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Name: Abdirahman Ismail Ahmed

Country: somali

Message: Greetings to all VOA Somali staff members. Afterwards I would like to state here that VOA did not include us, youths, in participating this discussion [about constitution], all you are focusing are old men who have been in the discussion since the nineteen sixties, who are familiar in other media forums. Please respect the youth.

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Abdiqadir Farah

Assalaamu Caleykum W/W

Greeting s to VOA team, Somali Service.

I would like to thank you for introducing this new program Madasha Dastuurka which I see as an informative addition to the understanding and awareness of the Somali person, since we are a society that usually listens and reads little.

Having said that, my name is Abdilqadir Farah Diriye (Arab), I am a Somali student living in Karachi, Pakistan, graduated from Karachi University with Masters in Public Administration.

I have also studied Foreign Policy and Diplomacy, public relations and mass-Communications. I was one of the Somali journalists who worked in Mogadishu between 2003-2006.

I would like to participate in the Constitution Square show which I believe is a program that discusses issues about the future situation of the Somali people which I believe is being buried into a ditch.

I would like to talk about and contribute to the program on issues that interest and benefit Somalis.

Thanks

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Name: Kheyraat

As a Somali citizen, I am troubled that a constitution is being fabricated for Somalis, a constitution fabricated by foreigners. We are Muslims, our constitution is the Koran, it is better that we govern ourselves in Koran from Allah, and then we will succeed here and in the afterlife.

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Name: khalib hassan

Email: khalib40yahoo.com

Country: USA

Message: Here is a big question: Who does Somalia belongs to? Somalis or Mahiga [UN Envoy]? Who is the constitution intended for? Somalis or is there some hidden agenda? Why would someone who is not a Somali force us to endorse a constitution that does not concern us? It seems that rights of the Somali person have been lost. How can an African man who is our guest, who has a job to do, tell us that we cannot debate our constitution, that we cannot make any amends and expect us to take the documents as it is? How could he threaten anyone who disagrees? This is beyond imagination. My big question is who does country belong to? Please VOA, helps us find an answer for this.

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Name: Zakaria
Sent: Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Your Madasha Dastuurka program is so good , as you know CDC [Consultative Draft Constitution] has 16 chapters or more than 170 articles. Most of our society is discussing about Islam and constitution.

Sent from my iPad

Zakaria

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Name: Sadaam Ahmed “Sadaam Dhagnaas”

The constitution is in contradiction of Islamic religion and the interests of the Somali people. There are lots of articles that are contrary to Islam.

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Name: Ali Ade Isaq

This constitution is not suitable for the Somali people because it is a constitution for one clan and it is designed to be used against the people in the South. It will be used to exploit their livelihood and resources, which is not the solution. The constitution must be dismissed in in its entirety and a fresh one started that is equal to all. President Sharif & Prime Minister Abdiweli must stop forcing us and threats against the people in the South, or else they will not be staying in Mogadishu and they will have to go to Puntland as they want to divide the Somalis and the Somali republic. Sorry! Sorry!

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D. Abdiyare

After greetings,

The approval of the new Somali constitution needs to be delayed so that Somalis get the time to read and think about the articles they are not satisfied with, in particular:

-Criteria for the President of Somalia

-Citizenship
-Sea and land borders
-Religion

these articles need to be defined very importantly and carefully.

Deeq Abdiyare

Sent from my iPhone

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Name: Mohamed Hasan Mohamed

Country: somalia

Message: ASC, brothers at the VOA Somali Service, you should think about your afterlife and stop propagating this unlawful document. Allah has made a constitution for this world, therefore we do not accept this constitution that the infidels are sticking to us. The upheavals in our country came unto us because we did not take Allah’s constitution in the past. Instead we opted for other regulations that Westerns use. …So whoever propagates this is like someone who prefers this constitution over Allah’s one. My questions is how can people who were created by Allah, given the way of life can say no and opt to creating their own constitution? Answer is required.

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Name: Abukar Mo'alim Abdule Elmi ,

Message: Abukar Mo'alim Abdule Elmi ,

I am the Chairman of the Somali Young Scholars Association, an organization that unites university students and graduates. I am delighted by this new program that you have started Madasha Dastuurka. I just want to draw your attention to focus on key sensitive provisions in the constitution such as:

1. Citizenship

2. Borders of the country

3. Criteria for the candidates of the top leadership which does not say they must be Muslim.

4. Federal system.

My questions is, why has the constitution not distributed in universities so that students have their input and suggestions rather than running after a traditional elders. Also, do you think that the TFG, Puntland, Galmudug, Ahlu Sunna will select people who would be opposed to the constitution? It is surprising. OK, thank you very much.

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Name: Ahmed Muhumed Jamac

Country: Norway

Message: To the VOA team I greet by Muslim greetings, asc. I am sending my opinion through this entertaining program Madasha Dastuurka which you have started. The betterment and protection of the environment and wildlife which are the backbone of life should be protected in the constitution. The constitution should ban deforestation without a justification. Because without a forest there can be no life. Therefore, the constitution should state and define the importance of the environment and forest. I believe this is the most important thing that should be included into the constitution. Thanks VOA. If you need further info contact me.

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Name: Isse

Country: England

Message:
To the Madasha Dastuurka: My suggestion is that Somalis should be informed about articles relating to the justice, democracy and equality for the regional states. On another article, the religion of the Presidents should be specified in the constitution, as well as knowledge. Also the central government should be given full powers to enter treaties, control the national army and taxation. With regard to the capital…It should be a capital for the central government and on top of this; it should be a separate regional state in respect of the people who live there.

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