For more than 20 years, Somalia was considered as a failed state, it did not have a government or any formidable governance structure.
Somalia was the headquarter of all terrorist groups. Al-Shabaab literary ran that country and subjected the citizens to untold suffering.
Hundreds of thousands of Somalis ran to Kenya to seek refuge. Kenya welcomed them with open arms, housed them, fed them and has never backed down from doing that.
Kenya decided to liberate Somalia from the hands of Al-Shabaab. Under the command of the then President Emilio Stanley Mwai Kibaki, Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) moved into Somalia.
Al-Shabaab has been on the receiving end since then. For the first time, Somalia had a government. In fact, the government of Somalia was formed in Kenya. Their President and the whole Somali cabinet were housed in Nairobi.
Kenya was determined to make sure that Somalia was a “country” again, living in peace and accorded the respect others are given.
One would, therefore, expect no conflict between the two countries. One would expect Somalia to respect Kenya and forever be grateful that Somalia is because of Kenya.
Somalia is now like that hungry and thirsty man who, upon being given food and water, he eats to his fill, forgets about it and starts to insult his savior.
Kenya and Somalia are now at loggerheads over a maritime dispute in the Indian Ocean.
The area under dispute is a narrow triangle off the coast of Africa in the Indian Ocean, about 100,000 square kilometers or 62,000 square miles.
In 2014, Somalia sued Kenya at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) seeking the court’s assistance in settling the dispute.
Somalia seems to have overlooked all aspects of conflict resolution. According to Somalia, ICJ is the only body better placed to resolve the issue. But is it?
Did Somalia try to table the case before the African Union? What about the East African Community? What about IGAD? Did the government of Somalia try these bodies and see whether the matter was beyond them.
The government of Somalia says, “The parties met numerous times to discuss how the dispute can be settled. But no progress was made in any of the meetings.”
This is a lie. No one goes into a meeting to resolve something with a fixed mind. You do not book a seat at the dialogue table with fixed demands that only favor you and not the other party.
Kenyans, led by the government are now sending a clear message to Mogadishu, “Not a single inch of Kenya’s boundary will be moved or vacated for anyone.”
Foreign Affairs CS Juma said; “Kenya’s position over this matter is inevitable and we shall not cede even an inch of our territory to anyone.”
Most Kenyans share the sentiments of the CS including the Secretary-General of Central Organization of Trade Unions (COTU) who also says “Not an inch of Kenya” will be moved or ceded.
“We have noted with concerns Somali’s intention and plan to auction the oil before January 2020 which is the effective date for sharing between the two countries,” said CS Juma.
Is Somalia was indeed genuine, why is the government trying to auction the area? Why?
Kenya is on the right side. In fact, this area lies to the line of latitude, which gives Kenya s larger share of the disputed area, something Somalia wants to hear nothing of.
How can Somalia demand that their boundary MUST extend to the southeast as an extension of land boarder? How?
We join other Kenyans in saying, Not an Inch less.