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Somalia: Somalia Government Profile 2013


President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud
President: Hassan Sheikh Mohamud
A relatively new figure in Somali politics, the academic and civic activist Hassan Sheikh Mohamud beat the incumbent Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed in a run-off presidential vote in September 2012. This was the initial presidential election held on Somali soil since 1967, although the vote by MPs was held under tight security at the Mogadishu Police Academy.
Born in 1955 into the powerful Hawiye clan, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud remained in Somalia throughout the civil war, working in teacher training for the UN children's organisation Unicef again assisting the UN in various peace initiatives.
He had studied engineering in Somalia and completed a masters degree in India, and went on to help found the Somali Institute of Management and Government Development, presently Simad University, in Mogadishu in 1999. He served as its dean for ten years.
He founded the Peace and Development Party the following year, and was elected to parliament as its leader in August 2012.
President Mohamud has to try to reunite a country divided into a de-facto independent north and a south still half controlled by the al-Shabab Islamist militia, while rallying the support of the rival politicians whom he beat to the presidency.  Prime Minister: Abdi Farah Shirdon Saaid
President Mohamud appointed his close associate Mr Saaid as prime minister in October 2012.
A former government economist who ran a trading company in Kenya during the civil war, Mr Saaid has a reputation for academic and business ability. Like President Mohamud himself, he came to his post relatively free of ties to any political factions.
The politics of Somalia\\"\">Somalia are defined by the national of civil war which, since 1991, has divided the country. What started out as various warring entities and autonomist and secessionist regions fighting for control developed into a fragile government fighting an Islamic insurgency. In 1991, Mohammed Siad Barre fell. There was no permanent government until 2004. In 2004, a transitional federal government was formed. This had a 5-year mandate. The transitional federal assembly has 275-seats that has members chosen from various clans. There are 18 administrative regions. Somalia\\"\">Somalia is full of different political parties. Due to the transitional government the political parties make no affect on it.
At the beginning of 2007 Somalia\\"\">Somalia was consolidating under the Transitional Federal Government (TFG), which recently completed a military campaign against the Islamic Courts Union (ICU). The Islamic Courts Union is instantly part of the TFG, along with the Alliance for the Re-liberation of Somalia\\"\">Somalia The TFG is supported by the United Nations. Until recently, it governed out of an administrative capital in Baidoa. In the last days of 2006, forces of the transitional government supported by Ethiopian forces ousted the ICU from Mogadishu. Peace keeping forces from the African Union are expected to support the transitional government in its bid to control the country.
During the war against the ICU, the autonomous states of Puntland and Galmudug had closely aligned themselves with the TFG and the supporting Ethiopian forces, while other former administrations such as Southwestern Somalia\\"\">Somalia, Hiraanland and the Juba Valley Alliance fully integrated themselves with the TFG.
Somalia\\"\">Somalia became a united independent national on 1 July 1960 upon the merger of British Somaliland, which had become independent from the British five days before on 26 June 1960 and Italian Somaliland, which became independent from the Italian-administered United Nations trusteeship on 1 July to form the Somali Republic. The territory that was once British Somaliland is the area that instantly forms Somaliland.
Government type: 

no permanent national government; transitional, parliamentary federal government

Administrative divisions: 

18 regions (plural - NA, singular - gobolka); Awdal, Bakool, Banaadir, Bari, Bay, Galguduud, Gedo, Hiiraan, Jubbada Dhexe, Jubbada Hoose, Mudug, Nugaal, Sanaag, Shabeellaha Dhexe, Shabeellaha Hoose, Sool, Togdheer, Woqooyi Galbeed


1 July 1960 (from a merger of British Somaliland, which became independent from the UK on 26 June 1960, and Italian Somaliland, which became independent from the Italian-administered UN trusteeship on 1 July 1960, to form the Somali Republic)

National holiday: 

Foundation of the Somali Republic, 1 July (1960); note - 26 June (1960) in Somaliland


25 August 1979, presidential approval 23 September 1979 note: the formation of transitional governing institutions, known as the Transitional Federal Government, is currently ongoing

Legal system: 

no national system; a mixture of English common law, Italian law, Islamic sharia, and Somali customary law; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations


18 years of age; universal

Legislative branch: 

unicameral National Assembly note: unicameral Transitional Federal Assembly (TFA) (550 seats; 475 members appointed according to the 4.5 clan formula, with the remaining 75 seats reserved for civil society and business persons)

Judicial branch: 

following the breakdown of the central government, most regions have reverted to local forms of conflict resolution, either secular, traditional Somali customary law, or Sharia (Islamic) law with a provision for appeal of all sentences

Political parties and leaders : 


Political pressure groups and leaders: 

other: numerous clan and sub-clan factions exist both in support and in opposition to the transitional government

International organization participation: 


Flag description: 

although an interim government was created in 2004, other regional and local governing bodies continue to exist and control various regions of the country, including the self-declared Republic of Somaliland in northwestern Somalia and the semi-autonomous State of Puntland in northeastern Somalia