Economics has a gender problem. This much we know. Economics might also have an Africa problem. There seems to be an established tradition in economics of talking about Africa (and developing regions in general) from afar, with western scholars leading the discussion (see this list of so-called big thinkers in international development).
Arguably the most important conference on the challenges of economic development in Africa takes place every March in Oxford. The conference is hosted by the Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE) which is also based in Oxford. Once the call for proposals goes out, development economists working on Africa try to get their papers accepted with the hope of traveling to Oxford to talk about the continent. Then there’s the North East Universities Development Consortium Conference held every year in a north eastern university in the US. Last year’s was held at Boston University and all the papers presented were either on Africa or on other parts of the developing world. And then there is the African Economic History Workshop which has been held at LSE, Lund and in Geneva since its inception in 2005. This year it will be held at Wageningen University in the Netherlands. I could go on and on.
The exclusion of Africa from the debates that concern it is also evident in the composition of the editorial staff of leading scholarly publications in economics that focus on the continent or have the continent as subject matter. The Journal of African Economies (JAE), arguably the most prestigious and influential publication on African economic development issues, is not only housed faraway at Oxford but has only one African-based scholar on its editorial board out of a total of 27 (Johannes Fedderke is listed as based in South Africa but he is actually a full-time professor at Penn State).
Matters are not any better at the Journal of Development Economics where none of the 64 academics serving on its editorial board is based in Africa (there is only one person that is partly based in a developing country)! The Journal of Economic Growth is just as bad.
So what really explains this state of affairs? Some will say that the meetings/conferences by necessity have to be held in the US or Europe because of infrastructure concerns in Africa. But this is not entirely convincing given that some of Africa’s cities have infrastructure that easily rivals the best that the West can offer. Lagos, Nairobi and Accra can very easily host gatherings of the likes of the African Economic History Workshops. What about the exclusion of African-based scholars on editorial boards of leading scholarly publications in the field? Perhaps Africa lacks the necessary expertise to sit on these boards? Again this is doubtful: leading African universities in Kenya, Ghana and Nigeria, to mention but a few, are chock-full of academics with a deep and intimate knowledge of the continent. Some of these scholars received their training at some of the best universities around, the same universities that host these faraway get-togethers!
By physically locating these meetings in places far away and disproportionately underrepresenting African-based scholars on journals’ editorial staff, the view is affirmed that the answers to Africa’s problems and the storylines of Africa’s past can only be weaved elsewhere under the leadership of western scholars. Economics as a discipline is sending a clear message: Africa cannot be a leading participant in the debates that ultimately shape its destiny. Is there any other interpretation that one can give to this?
Why Somalia Must Abandon the Indirect Electoral Model in 2026?
“The current electoral system in Somalia is undemocratic, discriminatory, and perpetuates clan-based politics. It is time for the country to adopt a more inclusive and democratic electoral system that reflects the aspirations and needs of all Somalis.” – Dr. Abdiweli Ali
The indirect electoral model and 4.5 power-sharing formula have been the norm in Somalia’s elections for the past two decades. The system was introduced in 2000 and was meant to be a temporary measure, but it has become a permanent feature of Somalia’s political landscape. However, this electoral model and power-sharing formula have been heavily criticized by many Somalis and international observers for being undemocratic, discriminatory, and perpetuating clan-based politics.
The 4.5 power-sharing formula allocates 4.5 seats in parliament to four major clans, with the remaining half of the seats being divided among minority clans. This formula has been criticized for perpetuating clan politics and marginalizing minority groups, particularly women and youth. The indirect electoral model, on the other hand, involves a complex system of clan elders and delegates selecting parliamentarians and the president, without direct input from the general population.
There have been several key events that have highlighted the flaws of the current electoral system in Somalia. In the 2016 elections, for instance, allegations of vote-buying and manipulation marred the process, leading to a delayed and disputed outcome. The 2020 elections were also postponed due to disagreements between the federal government and regional states over the electoral process.
According to Dr. Abdiweli Ali, a Somali scholar and former prime minister of Somalia, “The current electoral system in Somalia is undemocratic, discriminatory, and perpetuates clan-based politics. It is time for the country to adopt a more inclusive and democratic electoral system that reflects the aspirations and needs of all Somalis.”
The prospect of one person, one vote in 2026 presents an opportunity for Somalia to break away from the current system and adopt a more democratic electoral process. The One Person, One Vote (1P1V) model would involve direct elections, with every Somali citizen having an equal say in the selection of their representatives.
However, the implementation of the 1P1V model in 2026 requires significant reforms and investments in Somalia’s political and electoral systems. The Somali government needs to build an inclusive and independent electoral commission that can oversee the electoral process and ensure transparency and fairness. Additionally, there needs to be a comprehensive voter education program to ensure that all Somalis understand the electoral process and their rights and responsibilities as voters.
Moreover, the current administration needs to take immediate steps to implement the 1P1V model in the upcoming elections. This would require political will, resources, and a commitment to democratic governance. The government also needs to engage in dialogue with regional states and other stakeholders to build consensus on the electoral process and ensure that everyone is on board.
The implementation of the 1P1V model would have several benefits for Somalia. First, it would promote democratic governance and the rule of law, enabling the people of Somalia to have a say in the selection of their leaders. Second, it would promote inclusivity and diversity, ensuring that all Somalis, regardless of their clan or background, have an equal say in the political process. Third, it would promote stability and peace, by ensuring that the electoral process is transparent and fair, and that the outcome is accepted by all stakeholders.
In conclusion, the current electoral model and 4.5 power-sharing formula in Somalia must be discarded to promote democratic governance and inclusivity. The prospect of one person, one vote in 2026 presents an opportunity for Somalia to break away from the current system and adopt a more democratic electoral process. However, the implementation of the 1P1V model requires significant reforms and investments in Somalia’s political and electoral systems. The current administration must take immediate steps to implement the 1P1V model in the upcoming elections, build consensus with regional states and other stakeholders, and ensure that the process is transparent, fair, and inclusive. This is crucial for the future of Somalia and the promotion of stability, peace, and democratic governance in the country.
Jibril Mohamed on Somalia’s Road to Democracy: A Journey of Hope and Resilience
Somalia’s Road to Democracy: A Journey of Hope and Preservance, by Jibril Mohamed Ahmed
Somalia has been a country plagued with decades of civil war, violence, and political instability. However, in recent years, there has been a glimmer of hope as the country makes progress towards democracy. A new book, “Somalia’s Road to Democracy: A Journey of Hope and Resilience” authored by leftist advocate Jibril Mohamed Ahmed, offers a comprehensive look at the challenges and successes of Somalia’s quest for democracy.
I had the opportunity to speak with Jibril Mohamed about his book and the journey that Somalia has taken towards democracy. Jibriil is a Somali activist who has spent his life advocating for the rights of the Somali people. He has been involved with various civil society organizations in Somalia and has been a vocal supporter of democracy in the country.
“As a leftist advocate who has seen the devastating effects of political instability and violence in our country, I strongly believe that democracy is the only way forward for Somalia,” says Jibril Mohamed. “Our country has been torn apart by war and violence for decades, and democracy offers a way to bring stability and prosperity to the Somali people.”
The book chronicles the journey of Somalia’s democratization, highlighting the challenges that have been faced and the strides that have been made. Mohamed provides valuable insights into the rich history, culture, and diversity of Somalia and highlights the resilience and determination of its citizens.
“We have faced many challenges on our journey towards democracy,” says Jibriil Mohamed. “From clan politics and corruption to violent extremism, there have been many obstacles that we have had to overcome. But despite all these challenges, the Somali people have remained determined to build a better future for themselves and their children.”
The book covers the various efforts that have been made towards establishing a democratic system in Somalia. Mohamed discusses the role of civil society organizations, the importance of free and fair elections, and the need for a strong and independent judiciary.
“Democracy is not just about elections,” says Mohamed. “It’s about building institutions that are accountable to the people and that can provide the services that the people need. We need a strong and independent judiciary that can uphold the rule of law and protect the rights of every Somali citizen.”
Jibriil also discusses the importance of inclusivity in the democratization process. He highlights the need to ensure that all Somali communities are represented in the political process and that their voices are heard.
“We cannot build a democratic system that excludes any segment of our society,” says Jibril Mohamed. “We need to ensure that every Somali citizen has a say in the political process and that their rights are protected. This is essential for building a stable and prosperous Somalia.”
The book also covers the progress that has been made towards democratization in Somalia. Mohamed discusses the successful presidential and parliamentary elections that were held in 2016 and 2021, as well as the efforts to establish a federal system of government.
“Although there is still much work to be done, we have made significant progress towards democracy in Somalia,” says Jibril Mohamed. “The successful elections in 2016 and 2021 are a testament to the determination of the Somali people to build a better future for themselves and their country.”
Jibril Mohamed also acknowledges the challenges that lie ahead in the journey towards democracy. He discusses the ongoing security threats posed by terrorist groups such as Al-Shabaab and the need to address the underlying causes of violent extremism.
“We cannot achieve democracy in Somalia without addressing the root causes of violence and extremism,” says Jibriil Mohamed. “We need to address the issues of poverty, unemployment, and marginalization that drive young people towards extremism. We also need to ensure that the Somali people have access to education, healthcare, and other basic services.”
In conclusion, “Somalia’s Road to Democracy: A Journey of Hope and Resilience” provides a valuable resource for anyone interested in understanding the challenges and successes of Somalia’s quest for democracy. Jibriil Mohamed’s insights and experiences offer a unique perspective on the journey towards democracy and highlight the resilience and determination of the Somali people.
“We have come a long way in our journey towards democracy, but there is still much work to be done,” says Jibril Mohamed. “I hope that this book will inspire others to join us in our quest for a stable and prosperous Somalia that is built on the principles of democracy and human rights.”
The Trends of Price Electricity and Food
Somaliland’s economy is making steady recovery, shaking off the adverse effects of COVID-19 to record 3% growth but it faces high inflation, extreme drought, water shortage and rising up fuel prices which has severely affected community life. Somaliland’s GDP amounted to $2.9 billion while GDP per capita estimated $697 in 2020, compared to $688 in 2019 on Power Purchasing Index living less than $1.9 per day.
Inflation was moderate between 2.4% to 3% in the first quarter of the year, with the Consumer Price Index (CPI), but headline inflation rate picked up in the second quarter 4% with rising steadily recently skyrocketing for essential commodity and fuel prices during the month’s May to June, 2022. With respect to the volatile components inflation rate has been increasing slower in second six months on this year compared to the same period last year. Inflationary pressure on the communities since the start of the pandemic, Somaliland has been battling high levels of inflation. Prices of fuel, electricity and staple foods have increased due to the interruption of global production and supply chains.
Like other arid and semi-arid regions in the Horn Africa, Somaliland has been facing drought since the rain failed. While drought is seasonal and recurrent, the intensity of the crisis is not simply a result of a lack of rain. Also, the current drought is consequently taking place at a time when pastoralist have been unable to sell livestock for export for two consecutive years. But now the livestock exported in Berbera port after two year embargo on Saudi Arabia. In January 2022, the Somaliland National Drought Committee estimated that over 800,000 people in the country were experiencing acute food insecurity and water shortages due to three consecutive failed rainy seasons. The situation has not improved since, and if the current drought conditions persist, it is expected that over I million people will need emergency assistance in the coming months.
The Somaliland CPI shows that the Food Price Index was high during the first six months from January to June 2022. In particular, there was a constant monthly increase in the food prices beyond August 2021. The current food prices has caused almost all prices of food items to increase, while price of some items have doubled. This means that household income cannot pay for the same amount of goods and services as it could previously.
Present food inflation and price up of electricity adversely affecting the standard of living of many Somaliland households particularly the most vulnerable groups in society such as low wage earner, people affected drought and those on a fixed income. It has also seriously affecting government income and expenditure, undermines the country’s economic growth and it has led to worsening levels of poverty in the state.
The economy of the country has been hit hard by Covid-19, locust, drought, and pilgrimage restrictions. In the last year 2021 recorded a trade deficit $2,346,793,407 with imported $2,616,784,914 worth of goods and exported $269,991,507. Due to the country high depend on imports this was led to instability and imbalance trade.
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The trends of price electricity and food
My Way or The Highway: Villa Somalia’s zero-sum Politics is Getting Out of Hand
In the first three years of his rule, President Farmaajo has gone from “The Savior of Somalia” to a ruthless tyrant with no regard for the separation of powers and the democratic process, enshrined in the constitution he took the oath to protect. With the help of his narcissistic prime minister, they run the country like a cartel.
In their first attempt to consolidate power they assembled a team of inner-circle friends, relatives connected by blood or marriage and partners of their interest group. No wonder this administration includes known alleged terrorists appointed to some of the most important and critical positions.
The cartel turned NISA into a force that regularly oppresses the public and opposition groups and aggressively undermines the media, free speech and freedom of movement. In their first year in office, they orchestrated an assassination attempt against prominent opposition politicians, arrested journalists without a trial and tortured them. All sorts of peaceful political gatherings held by their political rivals were prohibited, All of these occurred by using NISA, an institution that was designed to be the eyes of the Somali people to guarantee their safety.
President Farmaajo and his team are actively undermining the country’s federal system. Over the three years that they have been in office, they have unconstitutionally removed three presidents from the federal member states and replaced them with loyalists, of course, without the participation of the inhabitants of these regional states.
In the Galmudug case, Villa Somalia and its cartel divided Galmudug’s leaders, using intimidation and blackmail through economic sanctions and isolation and some financial incentives for those who choose to take their side. This added to the division of already strained relations between the different sides of the state. A long and frustrating process of intervention leading to ASWJ on one side and Haaf on the other.
The Villa Somalia then established a sham electoral commission consisting of personal secretaries and advisors of the offices of the president and the prime minister to manage the establishment of the regional administration, including the establishment of rules and guidelines for parliamentary and presidential elections.
The commission did not waste any time, proceeded on a shopping spree, selected security personnel, drivers, and even known members of Al-Shabaab as parliamentarians, going against the will, expectations and aspirations of the people of Galmudug. Completely disregarding the legitimately chosen Parliamentarians by the elders and the elders themselves, and therefore creating discontent and discord in the process, which will inevitably lead to two or more state administrations. What else did anyone with a clue of the Somali politics expect?
You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to understand that Villa Somalia is destabilizing Galmudug working day and night to install their preferred candidate on the people and government of Galmudug, just as they did in the southwest state, where they kidnapped a presidential candidate in broad daylight using a foreign army and massacred innocent people who came out to peacefully protest against this violation. They finally installed a puppet as a president, after conducting a bloody and phony presidential election.
The wicked leadership at Villa Somalia does not care about the well-being of this country. This is an effort to make sure that all federal states become an extension of the cartel of Villa Somalia. It is now clear that they have no regard for the will of the people and their right to self-government and thereby elect a president of their own.
Millions of dollars have been invested by Villa Somalia to get what they want when millions of the Somali people are starving to death, some even dying of starvation at their doorstep, this is another proof if one wants proof of the wicked that took over the house that once symbolized the unity and future aspirations of the Somali people, the Villa Somalia.
If this attempt succeeds as it did in the Southwest state, it will serve only the interests of the corrupt leaders in Villa Somalia, in their dangerous scheme to remain in office by any means necessary after 2021, it will therefore, be up to the people of Galmudug to protect their rights and reject this evil and at least learn lessons from Puntland and Jubaland, who stood up to Villa Somalia and refused to allow them to intervene in their internal affairs.
It may not be an easy task, given that Galmudug is in a fragile state right now, but it is better and more honourable to fight for your rights than to be led and oppressed by a sleezbag. A credible, fair and free election, independent of the interference of Villa Somalia, is the only thing they can embrace and never accept the humiliation the Southwest state has endured. It is now or never, or Galmudug will be a tale of the past!
The Political, religious and traditional leaders and the elite of Galmudug should note and think very carefully before they trade their integrity and fate of their people and state for cheap and short term personal gain, these wicked people are going to walk all over you with their shoes on.
Take a lesson from Puntland and Jubbaland the rewards they’re enjoying right now. You should say NO to the dirty tricks of these crooked men (who are more likely to have their drivers as president than to hold fair, free and democratic elections) or face the humiliation. IT IS YOUR CALL TO MAKE!
What Does The Quest – Mida Project Contribure To The Country And It’s People?
From 2009 up to date IOM and UNDP have been running a project entitled QUEST – MIDA which is funded by foreign countries. This project is intended to bring back the Somali Diaspora intellectuals with sound knowledge, expertise and experience to Somalia. The project’s sole aim is to utilize the knowledge, skills and experience of the Somali Diaspora in a bid to restore key aspects of good governance, developmental planning, aid coordination, public and parliamentary reforms in a transparent and accountable manner and to provide technical knowhow in different autonomous regions of Somaliland, Puntland and South and Central Somalia.
This project was ideally meant for the Somali Diaspora who had fled from Somalia to the western countries of Europe and North America and gained permanent residency. The western countries are donating the grants and reaching out to the Somali Diaspora living in the western countries to benefit from this project. Since these project activities were launched, the Somali Diasporas gaining from this project have been storming country.
Methods through which applications were sent previously and the current norms
Previously, individual from the Diaspora would request and apply for positions while they were in their country of residence and after being accepted they would come to work to the regions they applied for. But of late, other methods of position applications have emerged. The Diaspora individual will go to a high government office, where they have a relative or close friend and they will request to become a consultant, afterwards either the close friend or relative in the Ministries will send the formal request to the agencies that run the project. Therefore the government office will facilitate the request of the Diaspora individual interested in this opportunity, by sending a request letter to the agencies indicating the need for this person to work as a consultant within the ministry and to be as well offered a contract. In receiving this request letter, the agencies of this project will accept the request in consideration of the senior government office proposal. Therefore the senior regional governments as well as federal government offices have found a way to bring their relatives in the Diaspora to get paid well through this project. Each office is requesting for many advisors in favor of their relatives in the Diaspora and these requests are sent to the agencies, this has reduced and limited people who used to directly apply. Some of the people who came through this project have promoted into government ministries and began to make this project a source of income whereby they divide the income with their relatives whom they facilitated into this project.
Simply, this project was meant to encourage the Diaspora individuals to came back to the country and invest back their skills, knowledge and expertise. In order to make this a reality as well as encourage people, there were no entry tests and complex competitions that led to the placement of the project except small informal interviews that led to speedy information sharing among the Diaspora about this easily obtainable project placements and thus led to whoever was interested to apply either directly or through the facilitation of government offices and Ministries. In any way, they apply through apart from their application request and mere checking of their documents there are no investigation, analysis and lengthy follow-ups done to their submitted documents and credentials in order to prove their ability, expertise and experiences of this individual or if they can extensively contribute to the areas they applied or their reputations as well as who they were within the Somali community from where they lived.
Many of the Diaspora professionals as well as other ones have involved themselves actively in the country’s conflicts and they have a history of providing support to the warlords within their respective clan. It happened that individuals who were contracted through the same process were the ones who started to initiate further problems and fuel more tribalism and set new trial within the people instead of working towards the development of the country. It is worth mentioning that some limited Diaspora professionals find their way through this project after they were genuinely motivated and authentically sent their application while some others came through the other means i.e. via clan wise. It is possible that they don’t know or even have the ability and experiences of the work they are paid for. On the other hand there are some other people with the knowledge and expertise for the job but after they arrive here they will not familiarize themselves with techniques of the work in the country and will get confused, most of these individuals are the Somali youth born or raised in the west and are not well versed with life back in the country.
There are many other ones who do not have the technical knowledge and therefore hire internal experts to assist him draft quarterly reports. Mostly, the employees they were supposed to work with do not even know him or and rarely see him except at times when they will be seen accompanying the minister. And when the project agencies are monitoring, the staff will always speak well of him and give positive feedback about this individual because the minister brought him here and facilitated his placement thus the employees are afraid to indicate otherwise. In this regard there are no measurable impacts from this project in many areas of its interventions.
A lot of resources are lost this way which could have benefited the country in many other rewarding ways.
What exactly do these persons meddle in unlike their intended roles in the project?
As earlier described this project was meant to build the capacity of the administrations and the central government through investing back the knowledge, skills and experiences of the Somali Diaspora who were educated outside the country and who were exposed to the professional lives and behaviors of the developed world.
This was intended to bring back their development as well as what they had gained in the Diaspora back to the country. In any case if this was intended it didn’t happen this way. As soon as they arrive and get these jobs in Somalia and the good hefty salaries with no imposed taxation which they haven’t being able to get back in Europe and America their greedy desire even increases more and more. Unlike the way it should be they fall short of providing the good advice and technical assistance and the expertise they claimed to disburse and this was not in any way properly invested back at the same time they rarely export their experiences gained back in the developed countries to their Somali counterparts in the governments and in other parts of the country.
Most of them will be occupied or get involved in politics and landing a major seat in their respective governments as well as facilitate their way into the government offices through the money gained from this project which they use to mobilize elders and their clan for their own desire to get more money than he/she is earning at that time. They don’t care who they step on along the way and will get on at any cost because their immediate families are not present in the country, therefore the welfare of others in the country will not be of their concerns. Even in coming here they have ulterior motives and there is something missing from their lives they couldn’t attain up there and they need to accomplish it here at the cost of the Somali people back home.
One of the true stories that happened at one point was that a consultant to one of the ministries who was desperately searching for a government position in one of the ministries was asked why he was very interested in this job and he quickly responded that “He needed to pay off his house mortgage back in the US and this was the reason he was head over heels for the job.
As these persons are mostly attached to the ministries they have close contacts with the specific minister as well as accompany him to all his travels for the purpose of exposing themselves to different places both internally and externally so that they gain the needed reputation and initiate special contacts wherever they go. In leaving the country they reprint their fake business cards to disburse in external meetings and these persons will always struggle for external recognition. As they are close to the specific minister, this particular individual will always represent him in all his external dealings wherever possible unlike other senior civil servants in the ministry. They as well very much enjoy traveling as this is a door towards fulfilling their innate greedy personal desires.
It once happened that a director of a specific ministry was invited to South Africa, after all the travel plans were put in place the general Director went for his trip before he was cut short in the middle of his travel. This happened while he was transiting in Nairobi at the point where he wanted to update the people of the institution that sent the invitation whereby right at that time he was informed that his ministry sent someone else with a different name, in astonishment and humiliation he was forced to return back. These individuals that are constantly interchanged with the opportunities intended for the local civil servants within the country who were meant to benefit from these programs with other incompetent people brought from abroad.
The people within the country serving at different institutions are deprived constantly of their privileges and all opportunities both externally and within and this chances are preserved for other relatives mostly from abroad that are close to those who serve in senior positions both in government institutions and others.
As they are relatives or close friends with the minister, there are no follow-ups done on these people and the employees in the ministry will not be able to complain if they intervened with their work or if they have concerns. He doesn’t do a full time job but rather is a puppet and acts like a wild animal waiting for their next prey. This person will also take full advantage in the areas that concerns them unlike performing on daily basis just like other employees or as depicted in their TOR. In opposite to this, he is very much distracted searching for alternative routes and chances at any cost. By this he will go very far by establishing a seemingly illegal NGO or company with some other representatives without functioning or stagnant offices that will make them knock many doors that they think will lead them other easy opportunities.
When it is time to send the project reports to the respective agencies, they will hire someone to do it on their behalf to draft an excellent informative report and this is how they will send it to the agencies. In receiving this document the respective agencies will acknowledge the report as well as comment on the excellent information in the report which is as they expected, maybe they will at least send a letter of gratitude for the good job done. In this regards it is highly likely that they will receive an extension of the contract agreement.
What is the effect of the actions on the local communities?
When they arrive in the country to work as usual, they settle in luxurious hotels as they rely on their hefty salaries that can cater for their stay as well as lead them to be someone they are not, a figure among their clan and perceive themselves to be reputed among the community. They do not appear to be well educated as they seem from their interactions, especially when they speak they brag in amusement unlike real educated people with skills and experiences. There is one thing that they attract people to and they enjoy speaking about it that is they had lived in the west. Amazingly you will see many of them enrolling in local universities that make people doubt about their so called expertise.
They do not work or engage themselves in the activities they claim to perform in the country instead they spend their time in the areas where government officials are located because they like the exposure; they participate in events, search for seminars and trips abroad. The people are well aware of their continued secure finances therefore people tend to believe that being from abroad favored them unlike other persons more competent and hardworking than them who are not even paid good salaries.
The Somali youth are not able to find good jobs unlike them they are aware how these people from abroad easily find jobs without the struggle and how they are extravagantly spent on, that’s why they opt to migrate and risk their lives across the dangerous roads in search of better living conditions. Some are attracted to get the international passport in the western countries that is favorable for easy opportunities back in Somalia. Sufficient is this example – a few months ago a young man who had graduated from one of the universities in the country died in the sea between Libya and Europe. The deceased decided to take this risky journey after his cousin who left the country over seven years ago come back through this project with a job that seemed a lot to him plus frequent travels to seminars abroad with good per diems and extra incentives as well as having fun in luxurious hotels in the country, compared to his situation jobless and nothing to do even after trying a lot to get a job. This situation tempted him and he decided to leave the country – to him this journey was worth the risk.
Since a lot of funds are spent on this project, it is advisable that it is executed as planned and to its intended course. Therefore it is strongly recommended that the following issues are addressed:
- A free and fair recruiting process should be observed through direct applications.
- A thorough background check should be done on the candidates before the incumbent is elected to office. These key areas should be assessed;
- An in-depth look into their knowledge, skill and qualifications
- Criminal history, records and reputation they uphold in the society. The role they played in the society and how they are perceived in the society greatly helps to know them deeply by their character, attitude and behavior.
- A medical checkup should be done on individuals before their placement to Somalia.
- The recruiting agencies should give the incumbents’ probationary period while closely assessing their knowledge, capabilities and achievements before engaging them in a full term employment.
- To put in place a complain mechanism for the staff of the ministry to send across their concerns as far as this project implementation is concerned.
- Assessing and evaluating the projects’ impacts, goals, objectives and achievements before contract extension – Has the project achieved its intended goals and objectives? Has the capacity of the ministry staff been improved?
- 7. To expose genuine individuals under this project to a much needed official programs and seminars to intellectually develop them for the benefit of the staff they are coaching and to acquire knowledge from them.
- To consider in this project other Somali Diaspora from other parts of the globe (i.e. Middle East and some parts of Africa) other than limiting it to the western countries because there are many Diaspora from this countries who have a lot to offer.
- If it is possible, it is good for the project to cover people educated within the country so that they can get access to job opportunities.
5 Steps for Getting Your Product into Stores |Tukesomalism.com
When you offer a consumer product, you have to decide whether you want to sell in stores or just online. My company started online for the first two years, then started to move into stores after establishing our brand and a strong following.
To help you decide the same issue, here are a few pros and cons about going into wholesale:
Quicker movement of your product
More cash flow with larger orders
Greater consumer reach
Cuts your margins in half
Expends a lot of time for managing and communicating with stores
Offers less control of branding
Acquiring a store is a greater investment than acquiring a single consumer.
A consideration is that you don’t have to go into large numbers of stores. If you’re worried about brand protection, you can establish a great relationship with one chain and offer an exclusivity agreement. Either way, if you’re ready to go into stores, here are some steps to follow:
Establish your terms. There are some specific terms you need to have ready when a store asks you for them. Here are the questions stores will ask:
What’s your minimum opening order? Minimum reorder? You can set these minimums based on units ordered or dollar amounts. But, when you’re selling at wholesale cost, you want to establish a minimum so you can cover the cost with volume.
What’s your turnaround time? From order placed to delivery, know when your customer can expect your products.
What are your payment terms? We used to invoice the store after the order arrived, but after getting burned a few times, we changed our terms to payment due when ready to ship. After the payment clears, we ship to the customer. Some larger retailers require a “net 30” agreement, where you get paid 30 days after the customer receives the product. It’s up to you whether you can wait that long and cover production.
How do you ship? Do you offer insurance? Decide how you want to charge for shipping (domestic flat rate, by weight, etc.) and what carrier you want to use. Also, decide what you’re going to do when the package gets lost or damaged (that will happen, trust me). Establish an agreement with the store before indicating whose responsibility the damage/loss is after the package has been shipped. You can offer an optional insurance add-on (for an additional fee) to cover any lost packages or damages.
Exchanges and returns? Decide how you want to handle product breakage or instances when the customer is unsatisfied with the product. I suggest offering some sort of exchange window the customer can use when its order is delivered.
Create your line sheets. Your line sheets, your first impression with the store, should contain the following:
- Company overview
- Terms (see the explanation of terms above)
- Order instructions
- Product catalog, with:
- Wholesale price and MSRP
- SKU number and product name
- Sizing and variations
- Any additional product details
Optimize your site to show you do wholesale. On your site, be sure to include a wholesale tab so people know you offer that. Include a contact form for stores to fill out with details about themselves — information that allows you to send line sheets if you think they’d be a good fit.
Once you’ve started to gain stores, you can also put a list or a map in where people can find your product in store locations.
Reach out to local buyers. Now that you’ve set your terms and have your line sheets ready, start with local companies where you see a fit for your brand. Try to get a name of a buyer and schedule a meeting where you bring samples and discuss the brand.
The first few stores Headbands of Hope ever got into materialized because I walked in with headbands and asked to speak with the buyer. I was so confident they would sell that I offered stores a consignment agreement to test them out (producing payment for me only when the products sold).
If you’re looking to get your own foot in the door, you too can offer consignment. However, to cite my personal experience, I found that, as my company grew, it was harder to track down orders and checks on a consignment basis so today we do orders only.
Attend trade shows. Trade shows are an investment, but can be a big ticket to lots of stores and major retailers. As a fashion brand, we attend America’s Mart and Accessories the Show. Stores come to your booth and learn more about the products and write orders at the show (if they like your products).
Once you’ve secured stores, help them sell your product. The more they can sell, the more they will buy from you. Offer display materials or even Skype-in to their sales staff and talk about major selling points. Create a newsletter list for just your stores so you can cater your communication and news about your company to their language.
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