MOGADISHU (SD) – Somali government has pledged to return close to ten million US dollar barely three years of Somalia seized the money.
In a statement, Somali prime minister Mohamed Hussein Roble has extended apology to the government of United Arab Emirates (UAE) for the seizure of the funds in 2018 at Aden Adde International Airport.
The PM expressed his government’s commitment to the UAE government as soon as possible.
“Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble has formally apologized to the United Arab Emirates for the incident of seizing the Emirati plane in Mogadishu in April 2018, which was carrying financial aid to the Somali government and pledged his country to return the seized money to the UAE as soon as possible,” the statement reads in part.
In April 2018, an UAE Cargo plane identified Boeing 737/700 carrying over nine million U.S. dollars was intercepted at Adan-Adde International Airport.
The cash was confiscated by the security officials while the plane was allowed to take off back to UAE.
The money was deposited at Somali Central Bank until an investigation is complete.
Days after Somali government said it would utilise millions of dollars for UAE intended purpose.
The country’s Foreign Affairs ministry acknowledged that there was a misunderstanding earlier between the two countries concerning UAE’s intention of transporting $9.6 million to the country, but it has since been clarified that the money was for military assistance.
The seizure coincided with announcement of UAE’s decision to halt its military training programme in Somalia which had been running since 2014 as part of international efforts to build capacity of the Somalia army.
Besides training, the Gulf nation was paying salaries for 2,407 Somali soldiers and building infrastructure such as training centres and hospitals in the war-torn country.