Warqadii Casilida Marwo Yusur Abrar
October 30, 2013
HE Hassan Sheikh Mohamud
President of Federal Republic of Somalia
Mr President: It is with great sadness that I submit to you this letter to serve as my official resignation of the post of Governor of the Central Bank of Somalia.
when I accepted this role, I did so with the interests of the Somali people in mind. Having worked at senior levels at some of the largest financial institutions in the world, I was looking forward to the opportunity to lend my skill sets to rebuild the Central Bank and improve the lives of our people, as the Central Bank is key to the development of the economy. I was encouraged and inspired by the Somalis whom I met everywhere I went, so full of hope that the nation’s recovery was near, and that they could soon partake in the rebuilding process. Undoubtedly, economic recovery is critical to this recovery from both a fiscal and security perspective. However, it has become clear to me that my ability to act in the interests of the Somali people has been undermined and will continue to be undermined by various parties within the administration. From the moment I was appointed, I have continuously been asked to sanction deals and transactions that would contradict my personal values and violate my fiduciary responsibility to the Somali people as head of the nation’s monetary authority. To use one example, as you are aware based on our multiple conversations on this matter, I vehemently refused to sanction the contract with the law firm Schulman & Rogers, regarding recovery of the Somali financial institutions assets frozen since the fall of Siad Barre’s regime.
I have read both the Agreement and Power of Attorney which your office instructed the former governor to sign with the law firm. I don’t believe that these documents serve the interest of the Somali nation and I believe that they put the frozen assets at risk and open the door to corruption. My suggestion to let me share these documents with a Central Bank appointed legal counsel for a second opinion fell on deaf ears. The message that I have received from multiple parties is that I have to be flexible, that I don’t understand the Somali way, that I cannot go against your wishes, and that my own personal security would be at risk as a result. I am the least concerned about the security threat, but I am truly disappointed that I have not received your support and leadership on this matter so that I could objectively perform my duties.
I am sure you are aware, Part II, Section 3, Article 6 of the Central Bank of Somalia Act states: “Except as otherwise specified in this Act, the Bank, and the members of the Board or the
staff, shall not take instructions from any other person or entity, including Government entities. The autonomy of the Bank shall be respected at all times and no person or entity shall seek to influence the members of the decision-making bodies or the staff of the Bank in the performance of their functions or to interfere in the activities of the Bank”. Unfortunately the Central Bank has not been allowed to function free of interference, and as such cannot operate as a credible institution.
the Central Bank is in poor condition with payroll processing the only semi-functioning unit. It will take dedicated effort, expertise, and commitment from multilateral agencies to build
it into a fully functioning Central Bank. It requires a governance structure starting with the appointment of a Board of Directors. Most of all for the country’s economic recovery to start, financial system to advance, and Hawalas to remain open and continue to serve the
Somali people, the Central Bank has to take its rightful place as licensor, supervisor, and monitor of the country’s financial system. In the seven weeks since my appointment as Governor, I have already made significant progress. I met with global financial leaders,
including the World Bank, IMF, AfDB, Barclays and the US Government, to raise the profile of the remittance crisis facing Somalia and help drive a solution. I worked closely with the World Bank and the IMF to develop a detailed plan to rebuild the Central Bank?s functions on a large scale. The IMF has already started training our staff in Nairobi. I reached out to the money transfer companies who are now looking to the Central Bank for leadership and guidance. The staff at the Central Bank is more motivated now than they been since before the civil war. I can only imagine what could have been achieved provided I had your support to perform my duties objectively.
while I am disappointed by this lack of support, I am
more disappointed for the Somali people who would have benefited the most from these and future contributions.
Yussur A.F. Abrar
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