Mahama withdraws acceptance as AU envoy to Somalia

John Mahama tells the AU that the lack of support by the government of Somalia could jeopardise the whole peace process

The former President John Dramani Mahama has written to the chairperson of the African Union Commission to withdraw his acceptance of the continental body’s appointment as its High Representative for Somalia.

While thanking the AU for the confidence reposed in him, Mahama noted that, “the high political importance of the proposed assignment requires that the High Representative enjoy the unalloyed support and co-operation of all political stakeholders.”

“President Mahama whose appointment as the AU envoy has been roundly welcomed by the Council of Presidential Candidates of Somalia, and the Coalition of Somalia’s Federal Member States, further cautioned in his letter to the AU Chairperson, Moussa Faki Mahamat, that the lack of support by the Federal Government could jeopardise the whole process and undermine the hopes that the entire world has in bringing  peace to the esteemed land of Somalia,” a statement by Joyce Bawah Mogtari, his special aide said.

“The former Ghanaian President who continues to receive requests from various international bodies and groups and is widely respected for his commitment to democratic consolidation, peace building and development used the opportunity to reaffirm his commitment to the African Union’s vision of an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa, that includes Somalia.”

“We don’t like Mahama”

Last week, Somalia rejected the appointment of Mahama as African Union’s (AU) special envoy to help mediate that country’s political impasse.

In a letter seen by and confirmed by sources at the AU, Mahamed Abdirazak, Somalia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation said Mahama has “extensive links” with Kenya, and that the country will no longer support him [Mahama] in his new role.

“It is indeed surprising that a candidate with extensive links with Kenya’s leadership has been chosen by the AU to facilitate talks on a political impasse partly engineered by those Kenyan leadership has supported,” the letter stated.

“Given the politically sensitive nature of the task of a high representative in any case, I am certain you will appreciate the importance of any candidate for such a post to be seen as impartial and without any links to the region,” it added.

“I hereby notify the African Union of the formal withdrawal of support by the Federal Government of Somalia for the AU High Representative for Somalia.”

Read the full letter below:

On Saturday (8 May) John Mahama, was appointed as the African Union (AU) High Representative to Somalia.

“President Mahama will work with the Somali stakeholders, to reach a mutually acceptable compromise towards an all-encompassing resolution for the holding of Somali elections in the shortest time possible,” an AU statement said.

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