Why Corruption prevails in Somalia?

Since 2006, Somalia has become the most corrupt country of the world. In fact, the country was stateless within the weak institutions because the militants and armed militia were fighting against the Somalia Federal Government backed by international community.

In addition, predatory politicians, commercialisms, local NGOs, International NGOs, narrow elites are still making fortune by perpetuating and excerpting corruption. However, the corruption is of the outcome of a political process, absence of effective institutions, political instability and clannism democracy managed and monopolized by small elite of politicians since 2000.

In this opinion articles, I focus on the main causes of corruption prevails in Somalia especially corruption impedes public service and goods. Indeed, the corruption is not from society because in early 1970s and late 1980s, Somalia has made main progress and economic growth and other side Somali society is making achievement in Western Countries and Africa in terms of business, politics and education.

The main causes of corruption in Somalia

It is necessary to clearly define the terminology of corruption before the examination factors induced the corruption in Somalia, the definition of corruption is abuse of the public office for private gain. (2005, World Bank) as similarly Lampsdorff (1999) defined corruption is misuse of public power for private gain. However, the corruption exists in Somalia undermines and cripples the public service delivery and economic growth, increases the poverty, inequality and unemployment.

Fragility State and political instability

Since 1991, Somalia is suffering from lack of a strong central government and political instability. In addition, the politicians are struggling for their own induvial interest instead to rebuild the state and institutions which collapsed during civil war. Curbing of corruptions requires political stability and effectively institutions could eliminate the corruption.

All though, the article 111c of professional Somalia Federal Constitution stipulates the aunt-corruption law and recently the House of the People and Upper House of Somalia Federal Parliament passed the aunt-corruption law and signed it by Somalia President Mr. Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo in accordance with article 90 of Somalia Professional constitution but formation and nomination of anti-corruption commission members under the process .

No merit-process recruitment

The concept of public servant recruitment must be based on merit as mostly developed countries, but it is deferent from Africa in general, and especially in Somalia.

There is extensive nepotism, favoritism and political patronage linked with employing and recruitment of public servants and other side, powerful clans, politicians and businesspeople exerts the pressure the government to nominate their own members as top jobs such high rank officer(general directors) , the positions of independent commissioners for public appointments and armed commanders to return back money to their own groups.

In addition, some institutions dominated by the specific clan which disbanded administrative accountability system of internal control for the institutions including integrity, civil service standers and ethics code.

Again, it is normally in Somalia that the political patronage allocation of public sector jobs to reward family and clan members, campaigners and followers but its inconsistent with Somalia constitution and Somalia civil servant law. However, the corruption is hindering the efficient and effectives of public delivery service and economic growth and development in Somalia.

Democracy based on tribalism

Since 2000, Somalia political structure based on clan power-sharing that is the mean, the all members of Somalia Federal Parliament, minsters, military commanders and ambassadors allotted clans through clan power- sharing formula and this structure leads to unqualified people holding the top jobs of country including political and top offices positions of the government like general directors which crippled the effectively and efficient of public service, reduction of poverty, creation of jobs for youth and economic growth and development. And the other main causes of corruption are lack of an adequate accountability and transparency, lack of role of civil society and media, mixed of judiciary and executive arms and lack of citizens awareness.


Nomination of anti-corruption commission members are very intellectual, and honesty have full mandate and legitimacy to investigate any office including top offices of the state;

Establishment an effectively public complaint system which the people submits their complaints;
Implementation of full separate of powers such as executive and judiciary branches;

Corporation with international community to freeze the accounts of corrupts in the international banks;

Civil society and media must to take their role for curbing the corruption;
Rising the awareness’s citizen against the corruption;

To foster the provisional of anti-corruption commission staffs because fighting of corruption is very difficult task because you are conforming people are properly very intelligent knowledgeable and powerful;

Digitize the public service and use E- government which should reduce the corruption and it allows all transaction and public service to be done online. Thus, increasing transparency, efficiency, and accountability.

Ahmed Mohamoud Mohamed,
Email: siyasi114@gmail.com