9 February 2013

Somalia: Technical Committee for Jubaland State Arrives in Kismayo

Kismayo, Somalia — The Technical Committee for the making of the Jubaland administration and IGAD regional bloc arrived at Kismayo International Airport on Saturday, as preparations for the Jubaland state convention are underway, Garowe Online reports.

Twenty-five members of the technical committee chaired by Sheikh Mohamed Mohamud Yusuf Aw-Libah, arrived in Kismayo on Saturday morning from Nairobi, to begin setting up the inauguration of the Jubaland state convention.

Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) officials accompanied the technical committee to Kismayo on Saturday. IGAD has been playing a fundamental role in the formation of Jubaland.

For nearly a year the local populations of the regions of Gedo, Lower Jubba and Middle Jubba have been holding community meetings in preparations to form the Jubaland state. Despite controversy from the central government, legally under the Somali Provisional Federal Constitution, 2 or more regions of the original 18 regions are eligible to form a state.

According to local sources, the technical committee and IGAD officials were whisked away to Kismayo University where they will be residing. A delegation of UN officials is scheduled to also arrive in Kismayo in the coming days.

The transitional administration in Kismayo, led by Sheikh Ahmed Mohamed Madoobe, met with the technical committee briefly on Saturday and is scheduled to have lengthy talks in the coming days.

Unconfirmed reports say that shortly after the delegation arrived in Kismayo, there was a bomb blast in the neighborhood of Alanley. According to local sources, the blast targeted Somali forces in the neighborhood and that the casualties in the bomb blast are still unknown.

Security in the liberated port city of Kismayo has been tightened as officials are preparing the city for a state convention possibly later this month.

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