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Somalia lawmakers approve new cabinet after challenge

Somalia’s parliament has endorsed the country’s new cabinet, a victory for the prime minister after more than 100 legislators challenged his nominations last week.

Acting parliament speaker Abdiweli Sheikh Ibrahim said Wednesday that 224 MPs out of the 341 present voted in favor of the new cabinet, while 15 rejected it and two abstained.

Somalia’s chief justice has sworn in the cabinet members.

Some lawmakers had said the proposed cabinet went against the power-sharing formula that Somalia’s powerful clans agreed on previously.

The fragile central government is trying to assert itself in this long-chaotic country after the election of Somali-American President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed last month.

The international community has poured in hundreds of millions of dollars in recent years for Somalia’s political and economic recovery.

The ministers were sworn in immediately by the supreme court, according to the said radio.
The Somali premier had named the 26-strong cabinet on Tuesday last week.
The prime minister’s own appointment by the president was controversial, because UN sanctions experts had previously accused Soma of paying Somalia’s oil ministry nearly $600,000 to protect a 2013 exploration contract.

Britain’s Serious Fraud Office investigated but found insufficient evidence to prosecute.
Somalia has been in turmoil since 1991, hit by decades of conflict at the hands of clan militias.
President Mohamed has pledged to his people that the era of al Shabaab and other Islamist militant groups was over, promising the group’s fighters “a good life” if they surrendered.

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