Oral customary laws of Somali-Issa communities in Ethiopia,…Djibouti, Ethiopia, Somalia
Representative List 2024
EN: The oral cystomary laws (Xeer Ciise) were drafted on Sitti Mountain which is located in Ethiopian Somali Regional State, Sitti Zone, Aisha District by 44 fathers refered to as Gande who represented the Somali-Issa communities in Djibouti, Somalia and Djibouti
EN: The traditional judges (Guddi) representing the 12 clans of Somali-Issa gather in the shade of trees (gedehoseti), used as courts, sit around in cercle to hear the case of conflicts and provide solutions according to the traditional laws (Xeer Ciise)
EN: The Gande is the Constitutional Court. It handles exceptional cases that are not resoled and passed through the procedure of the twelve trees or appeals. The Gande usually conducts meetings at the residence of the Ugaas who presides over the assembly.
EN: Moustafa Mohamed Ibrahim is the 19th Ugaa of the Somali-Issa. He is the traditional spiritual leader of Somali-Issa in Djibouti, thtiopia and Somalia. The main headquarter of the Ugaas is customarily fixed to be in Dire Dawa City in Ethiopia.
EN: Men wear a white t-shirt above their waste and put on a white garment on their shoulders. Below their waist, they wear white cotton cloth (gundate) which has woven stripes in the middle and fastened with a cowhide belt.
EN: Representatives of Somali-Issa communities living in Ethiopia, Djibouti and Somalia come together to exchange information in joint consultation forums on current issues. They provide solutions to urgent problems using the oral customary laws and ensure peaceful co-existence of the people.
EN: A traditional dancing known as Harimede or Willwille is performed during the election of a new Ugaas. The Ugaas is the spiritual father and politicial leader of the traditional governance of the Somali-Issa established on the basis of oral customary laws.
EN: Most of the Somali-Issa in Djibouti, Ethiopia and Somalia are transhumant pastoralists who are engaged in rearing domestic animals such as cattle, goats, sheep and camels. Thus, they are mainly generating their income from production of these livestocks.
EN: A wedding ceremony of Somali-Issa. The photograph depicts departure of the groom and bride from the bride's residence. The couple is accompagnied by the best man of the groom and bride's maids. At their departure, cultural wedding songs are performed.
EN: Concerned community member of Somali-Issa and practitioner of the element confirmed his free, prior and informed consent on the nomination and inscription of Xeer Ciise on the Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity with his signature.