International Journal of
Peace and Development Studies

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Peace and Dev. Stud
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-6621
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJPDS
  • Start Year: 2010
  • Published Articles: 103

Full Length Research Paper

The national peace building policy of Somaliland: Undoing what has worked?

Abdulahi Hamdi I.
  • Abdulahi Hamdi I.
  • School of Graduate Studies, University of Hargeisa, Somalia.
  • Google Scholar
Mydlak Robin
  • Mydlak Robin
  • Independent Consultant, Germany.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 01 April 2022
  •  Accepted: 21 December 2022
  •  Published: 31 January 2023


Part of the foundation of Somaliland’s stability over the last three decades has been its localized customary, clan-based peacebuilding mechanism. This may now be at risk. The ongoing institutionalization of Somaliland's peacebuilding structures through the National Peacebuilding Policy (NPP) reflects many features of a liberal peacebuilding milieu and legitimizes state-building models shaped by international development partners rather than local conflict resolution actors. This article posits that the key policy objective of institutionalizing the peace building in Somaliland threatens to undermine an existing and dynamic tradition with proven efficacy.  Rather than promoting peace, the NPP's layering of government peacebuilding capacities at district, regional, and national levels could endanger peacemaking efforts by truncating local capabilities and hitching these to governmental structures reliant on external funding. Rather than retaining proven localized practices, this institutionalization undermines volunteerism, creates unnecessary costs for the state along with new opportunities for political clannism, extraversion, and rent seeking, which threatens to undermine what Somaliland has achieved thus far.


Key words: Somaliland, peace building, liberal peace building, conflict transformation.