Nabadaynta Somaalia

The rule of law collapsed during decades of conflict, leaving Somalia's National Security Architecture weak and contentious. Non-state armed groups maintain substantial influence over politics and security. Improved security and rule of law is a key priority for Somalia in enabling continued progress towards stability and facilitating the transition from a reliance on the African Union Transition Mission to Somalia (ATMIS), formerly AMISOM, to security delivered by effective and accountable Somali security forces. Customary and Shari’ah-based judicial systems have gained legitimacy but their roles within the formal judicial system are unclear, and statutory courts have limited capacity. Marginalised groups, including women and minority clans, often lack access to fair dispute resolution, threatening the sustainability and inclusivity of peace initiatives.

About the Programme

The objective of Nabadgelinta Somaalia (NS) is to enable Somalis to benefit from improved security and access to justice through inclusive approaches that enjoy broad-based understanding, support and both elite and public confidence. NS aims to deliver tangible improvements to the accessibility, efficiency, quality and predictability of security and justice outcomes for ordinary people. The programme will develop and pilot low-cost approaches to improving security and justice responses, working with existing formal and informal institutions in a number of specific locations – initially in Jubaland and Southwest State and agreed with the relevant authorities. NS seeks to enable Somalis to benefit from improved security and access to justice through inclusive approaches that enjoy broad-based understanding, support and both elite and public confidence. NS is a multiyear, multi-donor programme and runs between 2022-2029.

 Outcomes

NS adopts innovative approaches to supporting security and justice by ‘blending’ technical S&J expertise, including both institutional and public policy development and reform and community safety and access to justice, with social norms and behaviour change approaches. Asal, in partnership with Saferworld, have been contracted to provide technical S&J expertise and are leading the Institutional Strengthening and Participatory Public Policy component of NS. Through this work, we support:

  • Open and inclusive policy dialogues between the government and citizens to enhance participation in policymaking, promoting good governance, transparency, and accountability. The policy dialogues ensure inclusivity by involving diverse stakeholders, including women, minorities, and marginalised groups. They highlight the need for clearer communication, contextualization, and flexibility in policymaking.
  • Through Town Halls, we support district authorities in creating safe spaces and forums for the public to express their concerns to government representatives, increasing civic participation and accountability. The town hall meetings promote regular engagement between communities and authorities, enabling joint identification of local priorities and solutions, leading to improvements in safety, fairness, and justice.
  • Our work supports development of mechanisms for communities to address concerns about police conduct, promoting adherence to the rule of law and procedural justice through active community participation. Successful discussions with senior government officials and civil society representatives have led to the adoption of a civilian oversight model. An ad hoc committee, including public members, state parliamentarians, and executive members, was established to drive public engagement and support for this model.
  • NS design and approach is rooted in Islamic principles by grounding its efforts and its communication in well-established Islamic concepts such as participation, honesty, fairness, inclusivity and dignity. Asal is leading the work to identify and operationalize established Islamic principles that are in harmony with the values of Somali society to promote transformative change including advancing gender equity and social inclusion and drawing on meaningful partnerships with Somali religious leaders.
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