New Somalian president a symbol of hope: UAE paper

Dubai: A UAE local daily commended election of new president in Somalia as a ”symbol of hope” and called on the international community to support him so as to forge widespread, popular support for a national government.

”The international community will have to continue with its high-level of direct support for the country by delivering essential services and providing security to its people. This will give Hassan Shaikh Mahmoud, who has been elected the President of Somalia by the country’s parliament, time to forge widespread, popular support for a national government, the Gulf News wrote in its editorial today.

To do this, the Dubai-based English daily, said ”Mahmoud will have to ensure that there is credible, transparent governance and that the meagre resources of the country are fairly utilised for the benefit of all its people and not be held hostage to powerful interest groups.

Anything less will simply slow Somalia’s return to the community of nations.”But, there is reason to hope that the appointment of Mahmoud will be the start of real, permanent change for the better. It is the culmination of a United Nations-backed transitional process that only reached this point because of the support of Somalia’s influential, although often warring, traditional leaders. His election may be a sign that they are beginning to understand the importance of reaching peaceful political consensus and constructive cooperation.” ”There have also been reports of tentative economic activity in Mogadishu in the wake of the eviction of the militant group, Al Shabab. Any effort to build social and political stability in the country and the capital must be underpinned by economic growth and job creation,” the paper remarked.

”Mahmoud, who is reportedly better known as a community activist than a politician, cannot be expected to run and heal the country on his own or even with the help of a still-to-be- appointed cabinet,” the Gulf News said, stressing that ”The international community will have to continue with its high-level of direct support for the country by delivering essential services and providing security to its people.

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