• President of the Hirshabelle State of Somalia, Ali Gudlawe Hussein, issued a decree on Saturday relieving Ali Jeyte Osman of his duties.
• In his stead, Hussein named Abdullahi Ahmed Maalin as his replacement in a new development that locals have termed as surprising and highly unexpected.
Efforts in the war against the al Shaabab terror group have suffered a setback after a regional governor in Somalia who has been spearheading local resistance against the militia group was sacked.
President of the Hirshabelle State of Somalia, Ali Gudlawe Hussein, issued a decree on Saturday relieving the governor of central Somalia’s Hiran region Ali Jeyte Osman of his duties.
In his statement, Hussein named Abdullahi Ahmed Maalin as his replacement in a new development that locals have termed as surprising and highly unexpected.
"Not a good timing. In my opinion, Jeyte is a very influential member of his community, and I hope that he does not abandon his responsibilities," a native who identified himself as Warsame said in his reaction to the news.
Ali Jeyte is credited to have led the fight against al Shabaab in Hiran region and used his influence to speak to the communities in the region.
He articulated issues and solved problems with ease and was seen as less corrupt than other leaders of his calibre.
On April 6, 2023, local media reported that he survived an assassination attempt after a roadside blast targeted his convoy outside the town of Baladweyne.
The explosion hit a military vehicle which was part of the governor’s motorcade, killing at least one security official.
Local media accounts said the attack on Ali Jeyte's convoy happened as he returned from a village visit outside Baladweyne, days after declaring that he would lead operations to dislodge al Shabaab from the region.
A section of those in support of his ouster, however, said the war against the al Shabaab would continue in his absence as it's not an individual undertaking but a shared responsibility.
They said Ali Jeyte's successor will equally spearhead the war against al Shabaab with the same spirit and dedication.
Harakat al Shabaab al-Mujahideen, commonly known as al Shabaab, is a Salafi-jihadist military and political organisation based in Somalia.
It has, however, spread its tentacles in other parts of East Africa and has over the years caused bloodshed in countries like Kenya and Uganda mostly through suicide bombings and IED explosives.