Former NISA Director: Somalia PM Masterminded the Assassination of Ikran Tahlil

From left: Ikran, Fahad, Mahad, Abdirahman Al Adala and Roble, the Prime Minister.

Mogadishu (PP News Desk) — The former director of National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA) Fahad Yasin alleged that the Prime Minister of Somalia Mohamed Hussein Roble had masterminded the murder of Ikran Tahlil, a former NISA officer. In a lengthy interview conducted by Farah Abdulkadir, a journalist, in Qatar, Fahad has shared details about his understanding of the circumstances leading to the death of Ikran.

“When I was deputy NISA Director and then then Director of NISA Ikran did not work for the organisation. I was told that she was in charge of the protocol at the office of my predecessor, Abdullahi Sanbaloolshe, and at some point the head of a human rights office created by him” said Fahad. As for her disappearance and subsequent “murder”, Fahad said that the conspiracy to kill Ikran was hatched by foreigners and Somali nationals. “Ikran sought employment at Roble’s office. On the night of her disappearance I was out of the country. Abdirahman Yusuf (Al Adalah), the Information Vice Minister came to Ikran’s house and took her to a premises where she met Mahad Salad, a Somali MP, and was afterwards taken to Darasalam “gated” community in Mogadishu. Then, another vehicle took her to a place near Jilib, where Mahad Karate , [a senior Al-shabaab officer], executed her” Fahad added. He said that Roble had scuppered the proposed national security meeting to present NISA findings on Ikran’s “disappearance”.

“Firstly, they put my life at risk by persuading Djibouti to detain me so that the proposed meeting could not take place” said Fahad.

Unanswered questions

The highly sanitised interview with the former NISA Director leaves many questions unanswered on top of the unsubstantiated allegations against the Prime Minister of Somalia and the NISA Director, Mahad Salad. Fahad implied that former NISA operatives are in an ambiguous employment relationship with the agency. “Former NISA operatives can be activated anytime” he told the interviewer. The risk faced by former NISA operatives is compounded by the livelihood pressures that, if Fahad’s version of Ikran’s quest for employment is true, lack of procedures to protect former officers against blackmail by opponents or assassination by Al-shabaab. Fahad was not asked if Roble was privy to the contents of the NISA file on “the disappearance of Ikran”.

President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud appointed Mahad Salad the new Director of NISA two weeks ago.

In 2017 Facebook post, Mahad Salad, then an MP, rejected the formation of a national army made up of soldiers from federal member states. “The planned London Somalia Conference will prevent Somalia from having a national army. Somalia will have only police force tasked with revenue collection” wrote Mahad.

Mahad Salad’s 2017 Facebook post on London Somalia Conference.

“This is the only clue about Mahad’s position on the federal government security forces, but it is not a conclusive evidence that he committed the crime alleged by Fahad” said a former counterterrorism office in Bosaso who asked for anonymity.

Revelations of Fahad affect any investigations the NISA director plans to conduct on the assassination of Ikran. Al-shabaab denied a report that the proscribed organisation had assassinated the former NISA officer.

“NISA is a Mogadishu-based organisation, very tribal and divisive and has been a political tool since 2013” said Ali Adan, a retired senior officer of the former National Security Service.

© Puntland Post, 2022