Hundreds of Kenyans of Somali origin took to the streets of Kenya on Wednesday night to celebrate the newly elected Somalia President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo.

Former prime minister Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo, seen here in 2010, has been declared Somalia's new president. (Farah Abdi Warsameh / The Associated Press)
Former prime minister Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo, seen here in 2010, has been declared Somalia’s new president. (Farah Abdi Warsameh / The Associated Press)
The residents in Garissa and other Somali dominated areas hailed the newly-elected former prime minister who holds dual Somali-U.S. citizenship as step toward emancipation of Somalia from the ills of bad governance for more than three decades.

The residents said Farmajo is a development-oriented person whose leadership track has been proven in the short stint he was Prime Minister of the war-ravaged country.

“We believe the newly elected President will bring much needed change in Somalia, insecurity and corruption being the most challenging and complex thing in that country, we congratulate and at the same time pray for him in his new position,” said Halima Abdi, one of those who took to the streets.

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Abdi said Farmajo has shown leadership qualities at the period he was prime minister adding that he had brought some sense of governance in the war-torn country.

Hundreds of locals moving in huge convoys of vehicles celebrated through the night and early hours of Thursday morning.

Others took a walk in the town’s streets waving the Somalia flag and beating drums busted with songs of “Somalia hanolato” (May Somalia live longer) as they matched in different parts of Garissa town.

They were joined in celebrations by residents in Somali dominated areas including Nairobi’s Eastleigh areas as well as refugees in Dadaab camp which hosts majority of Somalis.

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Abdirizak Hassan said he came out to celebrate the victory of the Somali President because he believes Farmajo will fight corruption that he claimed saw the country’s resources taken away by “foreigners.”

“We believe Somalia despite wracked by war and every day explosions, it has a lot of resources that is only benefitting foreigners, so my consideration is that the newly elected president will ensure resources are used to rebuild the country,” he said.

Farmajo emerged winner against the incumbent Hassan Sheikh Mohamud after second round of voting by garnering 184 against 97 of Mohamud who dropped out of the race to avoid a third round.

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Aden Duale, Majority Leader of the National Assembly of Kenya, expressed hope that the new president will provide solutions to numerous challenges that the country has faced.

“Congratulations to President Farmajo for winning the election, we hope he will lead Somalia on a new path of reconstruction, reconciliation and stability,” Duale said.

He lauded the incumbent Mohamud for accepting the results of the elections while also thanked all Somali government officials, members of parliament, electoral agency and the international community for the smooth and peaceful election. Enditem

Source: Fabian Mangera, Stephen Ingati, Xinhua/


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