Farmaajo to attend UNGA after renouncing U.S citizenship


Sunday September 8, 2019 MOGADISHU (RBB NEWS) – President Mohamed Farmaajo will for the first time since coming to office attend the UN General Assembly following renunciation of his U.S citizenship.

Planning Minister Jamal Hassan told the media Sunday President Farmaajo who is facing an election next year will address the Assembly mid this month, a task which he assigned Prime Minister Hassan Khaire in the last two years.

”This year, President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo will attend the upcoming UN General Assembly. The president did not attend the assembly during the last two years which he was in the office,” said the minister.

The announcement which comes barely a month after Farmaajo gave up his U.S citizenship affirms views that his allegiance to the U.S while serving as President in Somalia presented legal challenges.

Besides requiring citizens travelling back home to use U.S passports, U.S immigration laws also demand that dual citizens who hold senior state positions like President in foreign countries will have to consider renouncing citizenship to the U.S.

The UNGA is a global platform for leaders to present their credentials and that of their countries to the world, a chance which skipped President Farmaajo for the better part of his presidency.

The move to renounce foreign citizenship was also seen as possible political strategy to upstage rivals in future political contestations should Somalia set the citizenship bar for senior political office holders. PM Khaire who is eyeing the Presidency in 2021 holds a Norwegian passport.