Somali officials arrested after allegedly being involved in illegal charcoal trade
Mogadishu (Harar24) – Several government officials have been arrested in Barawe, including the commissioner, heads of police and intelligence for the district, after allegedly of being involved in the illegal exportation of charcoal, sources tell Harar24.
The officials who have been identified as Sha’ir Abdi Elmi, Barawe’s district commissioner, Mahmud Sheikhuna, head of the district police, Hassan Omar, head of the intelligence in the district and a fourth unidentified military commander, were all flown by helicopter to Mogadishu.
According to an elder who spoke to Harar24 on the condition of anonymity the four officials were arrested yesterday by security forces who had arrived from Mogadishu. “A helicopter carrying security forces arrived from Mogadishu and landed at the beach yesterday. The security forces proceeded to arrest most district officials and two men involved in the charcoal business” he said. “In the recent days four ships which were loaded with charcoal were at the town’s shore, but left at the time the helicopter arrived. We’re not sure if the arrests are linked to this” he added.
Some sources within the government however confirm that the arrests were made in relation to the illegal exportation of charcoal, after the officials insisted on the exportation after several presidential decrees forbidding the exportation.
The exportation of charcoal from Somalia were classed as illegal by the United Nations and the Somali government, despite this illegal exportation continued from several ports, especially in Kismayo where it continues to be exported openly under the supervision of the Jubbaland Interim Administration and the KDF.