Thirteenth Workshop on Federalism for the Ministry of Interior and Federal Affairs

Max Planck Foundation organises workshop on boundary demarcation in federal countries

Participants from the Ministry of Interior and Federal Affairs were trained on the 27 August on boundary demarcation in federal countries. The technical workshop was held in Mogadishu under the guidance of Max Planck Foundation's technical advisors.

The workshop examined boundary demarcation criteria and covered both procedural and substantive aspects of demarcation processes. Participants were able to draw on their knowledge of previous workshops organised by the Max Planck Foundation on closely interlinked themes, including the functions and structures of local government in federal systems and the formation of constituent units in federal countries.

The workshop explored various demarcation factors - such as population size, economic capability and historical boundaries - and discussed how demarcation authorities prioritised competing considerations. Following a review of several comparative case-studies, the discussion session gave participants an opportunity to compare global examples of demarcation processes against the criteria for determining size and configuration of local government units in Somalia. The participants were particularly interested to understand how demarcation authorities balanced potentially competing and at times contradicting demarcation criterion.

At this early stage of transition to a federal system, territorial reorganisation is an important priority for the Ministry. In support of this process, the workshop materials offered in depth examination of comparative demarcation experiences. It is hoped that the training's technical overview of demarcation processes will aide participants to identify gaps and inconsistencies in the current legal framework of Somalia.

The workshops for staff of the MoIFA are an integral part of the Foundation's project "Support to the Somali Federalisation Process", which is implemented with the financial support from the German Federal Foreign Office. The project supports key institutions in the Somali federalisation process with continuous legal assistance and capacity building.