Somaliland International Recognition Group(SIRAG)
London, UK
29th July 2004

Press Release regarding ‘Some NGOS Are More Equal Than Others' by Ali Gulaid, San Jose, CA, 29 July, 2004’

Sadly, we were shocked to find out about the above article published on Somaliland Org website. The conference 'Peace, Security and Development In The Horn of Africa “the Somaliland Experience” August 1-2, 2004, African Renaissance Center For Social Science Research, Media And Development “ARECSMED" published on SIRAG's website( http://www.sirag.org.uk/arecsmedaugustconf.htm) was organised well beyond the current debates that are taking place in our homeland. SIRAG forwarded the conference details to all the Somaliland websites. This conference was neither hidden nor had an agenda behind it. Sadly only few websites chose to publish it and we thank them for that. This is not the problem of ARECSMED if people chose not advertise this historical conference and promote its success for Somaliland.

I have a great respect for brother Ali Gulaid whom we work together on non political projects as part of our Diaspora efforts to advance Somaliland’s cause. However, this does not mean that we can not have our differences.

This conference is the first of its kind where the hard work of the nation of Somaliland were to be exhibited to the whole world. SIRAG has gone out of its way to support this conference and forwarded it to governments, international NGOs, universities and so on to let the international community know that Somaliland would not wait for anyone but will advance with their nation building in the Horn of Africa.

SIRAG has partnership with ARECSMED and designed a web site for this new organisation that has just barely started working in Somaliland. Within the short period that ARECSMED was formed they have managed to take a lion’s share in supporting our media organisationsin Somaliland like SOLJA. Mohamed Rashid SH Hassan the director of ARECSMED has asked us to promote their work through our website and help ARECSMED with all the support that we can offer them.

Our nation need all the help they can get. Since those of us from the Diaspora have the time and luxury of working from countries that have advanced technology we should never forget that our beloved nation does not have the same resources that we do. It took a long time for ARECSMED to get off their feet. We did ask for support for ARECSMED but so far no one actually came forward. The internal politics of our country should never stop us from seeing the big picture. Neither SIRAG nor ARECSMED have any direct support from the government of Somaliland. So to label non profit organisations with politics is itself a defeating ideology.

The government of the Republic of Somaliland are accountable to the nation of Somaliland so we can not speak for them. The people of Somaliland are wiser than before even though those of us who live in the Diaspora think otherwise. They have chosen their future and are the guardians of their heritage. Today the nation of Somaliland is much stronger than any time in their entire history.

Our role from the Diaspora is to support our nation without bringing down the foundation it stands on. Somaliland has adopted democracy as new and challenging as it may be. The proud people of Somaliland have learnt from their history and came out with flying colours against all odds. It is this new spirit and vision for greater Somaliland that we must inspire and look forward to. The sunshine has shined beautifully in Somaliland. We must embrace this new rainbow of beautiful colours that has changed our infant nation with wisdom and beauty. Each colour would inspire our young generation with new ideology and creativity that has never been seen before. We must never stand in front of time and challenge progress. For putting a barrier in front of time is like standing in front of a flood and trying to block it.

Peace and Progress for Somaliland.

Marwo Lulu Farah

Chairwoman of SIRAG

www.sirag.org.uk

siraguk@hotmail.