Somalia has rejected former Ghanaian President, John Mahama, as African Union’s (AU) special envoy to help mediate talks over the country’s political deadlock which Somalia believes is partly engineered by those the Kenyan leadership has supported.
Mohamed Abdirazak, Somalia’s Foreign Minister said in a letter to the head of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, that Mahama had “extensive links” with Kenya’s leadership and would therefore not support him for the role.
The letter was dated May 9 and circulated among diplomats on Tuesday.
Abdirazak in the letter claimed that the AU did not thoroughly scrutinise Mr Mahama’s background. “Given the politically sensitive nature of the task of a high representative in any case, I am certain you will appreciate the importance of any candidate for such a post to be seen as impartial and without any links to the region,” he said.
Mr Mahama, Ghana’s leader between 2012 and 2017, was named the High Representative of the African Union for Somalia’s political mediation on Saturday.
Relations between the two countries have been frayed, including a maritime border dispute that has lingered on for years.