Amsterdam, the Netherlands – On 7 October 2015, the AWEPA ‘Supporting Legislative Institutions in Somalia’ team had the opportunity to meet with Mr. Peter de Clercq, the UN Deputy Special Representative for Somalia and exchange information on the political developments in Somalia, as well as the funding structures for future programmes for the National Federal Parliament.
Mr. De Clercq was recently appointed the UN Deputy Special Representative, Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Somalia, after previously serving as the Deputy Special Representative for Somalia for the United Nations Political Office for Somalia in the period 2011-2013.
The meeting started with a briefing from Mr. De Clercq on the progress made so far in Somalia and the challenges ahead. He acknowledged that there has been remarkable progress, especially in terms of political development compared to the past decades.
The country has taken many steps in rebuilding its institutions and is moving forward towards achieving peace and stability. He also described a positive development regarding the reduced role of clan militias in Somali politics, which has consistently been a factor hampering the peace-building and reconciliation process in Somalia.
As a result of the increased institutional capacity-building, among others by AWEPA, the Parliament has become a more accountable and representative body. Mr. Clercq applauded AWEPA on its work with the Parliament and noted that the stakeholders expressed great appreciation for AWEPA’s work in Somalia.
Despite the overall developments since the installment of the current government and parliament in 2012, the country still faces huge challenges and setbacks, including the fragile security situation and political instability. Mr. De Clercq emphasised that it is important for the international community to continue supporting the on-going processes.