Winning hearts and minds of people should be priority in SomaliaListen /
The priority of the political leadership in Somalia should be to win the hearts and minds of the people, according to an independent United Nations expert.
Dr. Shamsul Bari, who deals with the situation of human rights in Somalia, has welcomed the election of a new President and Speaker of Parliament by Somalia's lawmakers.
He calls on the forthcoming government and the international community to seize the opportunity to build a new Somalia with the rule of law and respect of human rights for all Somalis.
"Frankly and clearly the priority will be to win over the hearts and minds of the people of Somalia. So far, I think for the last two decades no one cared for the people. The security situation was such that all the rulers, all the leaders were interested in survival and making sure that their positions were safeguarded and there was hardly any administration to look after the interests of the people. There was hardly any delivery of services to the people."
Dr. Bari said although Somalia still faces challenges, the election of new leaders is a good beginning.