The body of Paul Anthony Formosa who was killed at a port in Somalia is expected to be flown back to Malta in the next few days by the company P&O with whom he worked as project manager at the port of Bossaso.
A terrorism expert believes that the Maltese man, aged 52, was killed through no fault of his own because of the agenda which the terrorist organisation Al Shabaab has against the company he worked for.
Meanwhile, the victim’s daughter posted an emotional message saying that no one should use her father’s murder to stir up racial hatred.
The motive behind Formosa’s death might never be discovered after the media in Somalia reported that at Bossaso hospital the second suspect in the Maltese man’s murder had died.
Early on Monday morning, Abdullahi Mohamed Ibrahim and the alleged murderer who was with him entered Bossaso port posing as fishermen and as soon as they spotted the Maltese man they opened fire and shot him.
Formosa died at the hospital a few minutes later while his colleagues were injured. As soon as the attack took place, the port’s security forces shot at the attackers and killed one of them while Ibrahim was seriously injured and died early Tuesday morning.
The two suspects were members of the Islamic militant group, Al Shabaab which took responsibility for the attack. Dr Trevor Calafato, a lecturer and researcher on terrorism at the Univesity of Malta, said that Al Shabaab which means ‘young man’ is a terrorist organisation which is trying to bring down the Somalian Government which is supported by Western countries, and develop an Islamic state instead.
“Although it is not a group like Al Qaeda and ISIS they have rather similar ideologies and have ended up eventually affiliating themselves with Al Qaeda and to a certain point even with ISIS,” said Dr Calafato.
Paul Anthony Formosa was leading a project by P&O, a subsidiary of DP World which is based in Dubai. Two years ago the company won a 30-year concession by the authorities of the semi-autonomous region of Puntland to develop and manage this strategic port. A spokesperson for Al Shabaab said that the attack occurred because P&O are occupying the port of Bossaso.
Dr Calafato said that Mr Formosa was innocently caught up in this conflict full of violent and political intrigue in Somalia.
“The group wants to gain complete power over this region and he literally happened to be, unfortunately, at the wrong place at the wrong time.”
TVM is informed that Paul Anthony Formosa’s body is expected to be brought back to Malta within the next few days. Sources said that the company he worked for P&O is coordinating and financing the travel arrangements.
His daughter, Sarah Formosa told TVM that her father was not a businessman but an employee who had always tried to improve his livelihood to provide for his family which he loved dearly. In a message to those who were trying to use the murder to stir up and justify racial hatred, Sarah said that people who come to Malta from these countries are fleeing from the same people who killed her father.
In a statement, the Imam Mohammed Elsadi, in the name of the Muslim community in Malta, condemned this terrorist act and expressed his hope that an isolated incident like this does not affect the good relationship between the Maltese and the Muslims who live in Malta.