The Somali Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has disputed rumors that it has hired a commercial company to manage visas for Somali citizens visiting Kenya. In a letter issued to their Kenyan colleagues on Thursday, the Ministry advised them to disregard any communication from unknown sources.
Despite acknowledging receipt of the letter concerns people mobility between the two nations, the Ministry expressed disappointment that the letter’s contents were false and did not reflect the attitude of the Federal Government of Somalia. The government stressed that it did not support any unauthorized businesses or persons claiming to help Somali citizens apply for visas.
The Ministry further stated that the Somali government anticipated Kenya to implement the visa-on-arrival agreement for Somali passport holders in accordance with the joint communique of July 15, 2022, and the earlier agreement struck between the two countries.
A further communication purporting to be from the same office prompted the Ministry’s return letter. The letter certified World Tour and Travel Services, a Somalia-based company, as the sole body tasked with organizing and submitting visa applications for Somali individuals visiting Kenya.
According to a reputable source within the Federal Government, the letter was most likely faked by the government’s opponents in order to derail the military effort against Al Shabaab and other ongoing activities.
Since social media becomes a main source of news and information, the Somali government has seen an increase in the use of forged or counterfeit letters in deceptive online campaigns.