Nairobi — The Government of Kenya has warned it will impose punitive sanctions against those it calls 'potential spoilers' of the Somali political process.
In a statement, President Mwai Kibaki warned any individuals or groups in and out of Somalia trying to jeopardize the roadmap for ending the Transition in Somalia risk immediate imposition of specific measures and restrictions which are spelt out in Resolutions of the Africa Union, United Nations and Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD).
"We wish to send a clear warning to all those intent on derailing, undermining or manipulating the roadmap towards a permanent political settlement after August 2012 that Kenya will not tolerate such actions," he said in a statement released by the Presidential Press Service on Friday.
"Accordingly, those bent on perpetuating such acts will be held individually accountable for their actions, and as a government we shall not hesitate to identify and isolate them, including imposing punitive sanctions."
He urged the Somali people to remain vigilant as the process moves closer to key benchmarks, such as selection of Members of Parliament and election of the Speaker, the Deputies and the President and eventual setting up of a new Government after more than two decades of turmoil and lack of proper governance.
President Kibaki called upon the entire Somali political leadership to ascend beyond their individual interests and act in the best interest of the Somali people by embracing the outcome of the elections and uniting to rebuild Somalia; adding that the conclusion of this process will be a defining moment for Somalia.
He further urged all the people of Somalia, including the Somali Diaspora to support the process that will usher in a new dawn in Somalia.
"I wish to reiterate the Kenya governments' support for the roadmap and political process and establishment of a new more inclusive, transparent and broad-based political dispensation in Somalia after August 2012," he said while commending Somalia leadership for adopting of the Provisional Constitution by the National Constituent Assembly.
The president emphasised the security of Kenya and the entire Horn of Africa region is vitally connected and inextricably linked to lasting peace and stability of Somalia.
"As I stated while addressing Somalia leaders on February 9, 2004 at the Safari Park Hotel, Nairobi and I quote: "As a neighbouring country, we wish to see peace and stability restored in Somali and the entire Horn of Africa. But above all, lasting and durable peace and a stable government in Somalia is a matter of great national interest to Kenya."
The statement by Kenya comes two months after AU, UN and IGAD jointly issued unambiguous warning to all potential spoilers and non-compliance of the roadmap to the August 20 deadline to complete the transition into permanent government.
In a press release, the three bodies said requests for further sanctions against spoilers may simultaneously be referred to the United Nations Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea in order to open an investigation under the terms of UN Security Council l resolution 1844 of 2008, adding that they will be taking concrete action in the coming weeks.