Somalia’s Outgoing President Vows to ‘Cleanse’ Capital of Rivals

MOGADISHU (Somaliguardian) – Somalia’s outgoing president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo has vowed to “eliminate” his rivals in a meeting held with youth lobbying for peace in the capital, a few days after announcing that he will roll back an extension of his term.

The youth have held protests in Mogadishu this week and met with many of those involved in the current standoff in Somalia’s capital, urging them to restore calm and end their dispute through dialogue.

In a meeting at the presidential palace, the country’s embattled president Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed – better known as Farmajo – told the youth that he was fighting warlords seeking to conquer power through violence and asked local youth to support him in driving them out of the capital.

According to one of the youth, who has spoken to Somaliguardian on the condition of anonymity for fear of being identified, Farmajo vowed to take an immediate action and “cleanse” the capital of opposition forces and a faction of the army against an extension of his term.

For the youth, Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed’s remarks – who seems to be hell-bent on moving ahead with planned offensive against troops supporting his opposition – were unexpected and left his office without any assurance that a feared war would be prevented. In the past few days there has been a precarious calm in the capital, though Farmajo’s supporters are still facing off with those against his term extension move in a number of neighborhoods.

It comes as the prime minister Mohamed Hussein Roble continues to exert major efforts in preventing further confrontations and loss of life in the capital, after an upsurge of violence has forced tens of thousands of families to flee their homes earlier this week. He opposed Farmajo’s bid to stay in power beyond his constitutional term, drawing support from the international community and local political stakeholders.

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