BY M.M. AFRAH©
syndicates in the payroll of giant industries under a
notorious godfather and a local warlord are making millions
of dollars by dumping toxic wastes on our coastal regions
and territorial waters, while United Nations officials
responsible for the protection of the environment and
the international law of the sea, are dragging their feet.
Is this a cover up, or the proverbial three monkeys-see
no evil, say no evil and hear no evil? I mean those who
never open their mouth on this grave matter, never lift
a finger against the Mafia syndicates and their godfathers,
even after they knew their names and nationalities. Not
even when they operate this apocalyptic business openly
under their very nose.
what the hell is going on out there?
wastes are the most harmful form of pollution. The effect
on humans from contaminated seafood includes birth defects
and premature death. The result made our sea life synonymous
with environmental disaster, pressing new problem in chaotic
Somalia. Again it baffles me and some of my colleagues
in the media why action were not taken against these thugs,
even after their names were known, thanks to the local
human rights organizations. It is no longer secret that
some of these criminals include one of the notorious warlords
who have been bankrolling at the expense of our environment
during the last decade.
warlord does not want to understand that a war to exterminate
what is left of a country once called the Somali Republic
is on the rampage. As he is blinded by the myopia of making
a quick money, he does not realize or do not want to realize
that the country is facing a war of extermination worse
than the civil/clan wars-a war that aims the country to
disappear from the face of the earth. This warlord (the
appropriate prefix is The Vulture) reminds me of the German-Jewish
bankers and industrialists who in the 1930s, hoping to
save themselves, lent Hitler money, instead of organizing
insurgents against the Nazis with that money to carry
out hit and run operations. Few years later, these same
Jewish bankers and industrialists ended in Hitler's crematory
Pearl Harbour, the holocaust, the genocide in Rwanda,
the Twin Towers in New York City, the Iraq quagmire and
Darfur would look like a picnic compared to what is in
store for the long suffering people of Somalia.
investigators discovered that pollution in the Somali
coast is a major problem that is affecting the coastal
areas and the rest of the country, too. It affects ocean
organisms and directly affects human health and resources.
Somali fishermen told the investigators that they are
witnessing the toxic wastes in Somalia's territorial waters
are killing the fish population and many plants in the
ocean, and have huge impact on the health of the inhabitants.
They had witnessed deformed babies and premature deaths
in the coastal regions, which is fast spreading to the
hinterland-and to the entire country. They told the investigators
that no amount of sweet talk and diplomacy could save
Somalia. It is not as simple as that, they said.
the vultures, as we read some times during the last 3-4
months, have problems of their own. In sorting out this
problem, new signals have been emerging from Mogadishu.
They are wasting a lot of time over trivialities, circumventing
the crucial problem-that of disarming their own militia
and removing all road barricades without exception. Now
it emerged that the militia of one of the warlords refused
to disarm and dismantle their roadblocks from the main
arteries of the capital. Because of these inequities,
donor countries are disinclined to support the disarmament
project as they are doing in Somaliland and Puntland.
It is worth mentioning here that Osman Atto has taken
the long awaited step to remove his militia from the Afgoi/Mogadishu
road during the week, but the lingering question is: Would
he stay on course and stick to his guns? I hope so.
political analyst was quoted as saying that some of the
warlords are not serious in the business of disarming
their militia. "We are dealing with the struggle
for power and media hype between rival gangs," he
said. Of course, the original intention to disarm the
militia and dismantle the string of barricades was noble,
but the great impression created is an exercise knocked
together in ad hoc manner by certain individual warlords
and their paymasters intent on reinsuring themselves,
never to commit themselves finally to a single course,
but forever contriving to hedge and lay off. Sixth sense
(that's if you believe in telepathy) would tell you that
whatever they say or do would turn out to be their typical
baloney and hogwash. It is a world of incurable hate and
mistrust. Simple every day disputes escalate into bloodshed
because of the presence guns.
in this website have said before and are saying it again,
and again that the country requires a broad effort to
try to get people to give up their stash of weapons, so
that the gun culture would not effect next generation,
but the lingering question is: "If they surrender
their cache of weapons who will guarantee their safety?
Many honest citizens kept their guns close to their hearts
for no other reason than to defend their family from the
marauding Mooryaan. The simple reason is that they could
not afford hiring private army and that there is no central
government to protect them. It is as simple as that.
back to the toxic wastes that are being dumped on Somalia's
coastal regions, it is obvious that the Mafia syndicates
and their godfathers have been taking advantage of the
chaotic situation in Somalia and the cash-starved warlords.
As a result, the country's territorial waters, the longest
in Africa, became free for all. In addition to toxic wastes,
fishing trawlers from a number of countries vacuum clean
the ocean floors with impunity, scot-free.
irony is that whenever young militias try to apprehend
a foreign trawler for illegally fishing within the 200-miles
of Somalia's territorial waters, the foreign media cook
words such as "pirates of the high seas." A
recent case in point is a Korean cargo ship, registered
in Panama, and was apprehended as the seamen, mostly Africans,
were discharging dozens of barrels containing toxic wastes
off Adale coast. This is just a tip of the iceberg from
the coastal area, and there were many more during the
last decade or so. It is estimated that in Puntland alone,
several hundreds factory trawlers illegally fish off the
ocean floors of Bossaso, Hafun, and Las Qorey as there
has been steady increase in demand for the red lobsters
and other seafood in affluent societies.
could go on and on with this frightening story, but I
feel like being stonewalled by those who were supposed
to take action against those responsible for these monstrous
crimes. For people like me who have seen and reported
too many horror stories and got used to them at certain
points, this particular one gives me sleepless nights.
has the right to ask this legitimate question: "Where
are the officials from the United Nations responsible
for the protection of the environment? Are they waiting
for manna or karma to fall from the sky to help them do
Kofi Annan, where art thou, brother?