Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Muslims shield Christians in the face of death - Mandera's bravery revelation.

I have been dormant for sometime after recently changing jobs. Well, this is to break the ice and lull in doing what I like to do, write, so expect much more from this space!

Back to our story and its eye catching title, Muslims shield Christians in the face of death - Mandera's bravery revelation. Your guess is as good as mine. I smiled, yes, as weird as you might think when I first read about what transpired on Monday in a remote area of the restive North-eastern Kenya bordering Somalia.

Al-Kabaab militants sprayed bullets on a Makkah bus headed to Mandera town from the Kenyan capital Nairobi, precisely between Kotilo and El-Wak villages. However that was not the news that brought satisfaction among all those who heard about this tragic incident that unfortunately claimed two innocent lives.

Coincidentally, Makkah is Islam's holiest city in Saudi Arabia. The bus where this miracle survival took place is also called Makkah Bus Service!

However, the story is not in the attack but rather the real story was in the reaction of the majority Muslim commuters on the bus who came to the rescue of the minority Christians travelling alongside them.

When the heavily armed Al-Kabaab militants stormed into the bus the Muslims passengers were ready to die while defending the few Christians on-board. First, they gave them Muslim attires to wear and later on when the militants sought to segregate Muslims from Christians in order to cold-bloodedly kill the Christians as they have done in the past in Kenya, to be precise in Mandera, Mpeketoni, Nairobi and Garissa. But that was not the case this time after Muslim passengers dismissed them and defied their order.

What a beautiful thing to do! I have no words to describe this rare, wonderful, kind, brave, honest and love depicted by helpless people overpowered by evil but who did not despair or loose hope but instead stood their ground to say no even with guns pointed at their heads.

"This time round the notorious Al-Kabaab gang loathed by many in this part of the world for their cruelty and complete disregard of shame, faith or reason were in for a rude shock! Muslims on the bus defied their order to flush out Christians amongst their midst even at the face of death leaving the gun tooting Al-Kabaab vagabonds in limbo and total bewilderment," You can quote me on that!

They could not believe the Muslims defying their order while still urging them to kill them first. This unprecedented move was not only share bravery unheard of but was also a wake up call for those naysayers who were always quick to jump into conclusions when these savages calling themselves Al-Kabaab, who mind you do not represent true Islam, go about their murderous acts of killing in the name of religion because they hide behind the veil of Islam, which coincidentally means peace.

What our wonderful Muslim brothers did in the face of adversity to refuse to sell out their Christians brothers and sisters needs to be applauded and imitated by all other true Muslims because it will simply render the bad intentions and madness of the few blood letting losers like Al-Kabaab, useless. This is will kill them because this goes against the whole reason why they are going into their killing spree targeting Christians which is intended to solely create mistrust among Muslims and Christians.

For those who bought into the cheap propaganda of these murderous thugs like Al-Kabaab, believing that Islam is at war with Christianity, then this rare act of bravery by our Muslim brothers and sisters on the attacked bus who stood against injustice, is proof enough that Islam does not condone violence or hatred and that true Islam has nothing in common with terrorism because it is a peaceful religion maligned by these freelancers whose masters are unknown!

Can we please salute these brave Muslims men and women, who defended humanity, defended justice and defended true Islam in the face of adversity.

Peace, salam, nabad!

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Mogadishu by night

My last day in Mogadishu couldnt be better than a ride at night across the white-washed seaside city to sample what it has to offer before I momentarily leave the city for an international assignment.

It was reassuring to see police checkpoints at all intersections in Mogadishu thst required pedestrians to stop, unwind their car windows and put lights on so that all passengers are seen and in some cases they'd ask you to open your car boot for security check.

I found the armed security personnel manning the various government checkpoints to be alert and respective except one big checkpoint on your way to the airport which is manned by intelligence officers who are at times rude to pedestrians and at times seen pointing the gun at people without any cause of alarm.

Apart from that little hitch up, the streets of Mogadishu are well lit at night by street lights allowing businesses to open until late as residents go about shopping in the much cooler evenings as others sat outside coffee shops sipping capuchino and tea as they engaged in lively chit chats.

Unlike other major capitals in the world, crime is not rampant in Mogadishu unless of course the militants suicide bombing attacks which has also drastically reduced thanks largely to the war weary residents closely cooperating with security agencies by reporting any suspicious characters.

I cannot imagine how Mogadishu will ultimately look like with permanent peace and no fear of militant attack.

It's long past midnight now and I have to rest because I have an early morning flight tomorrow to catch before leaving Mogadishu or Xamar Cadey! the local name for this wonderful old city overlooking the Indian Ocean.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

'Rer hebel' syndrome – Somalia’s clan cancer.

If there is any single invention that might be a national hit in Somalia it would probably be an anti-clan pill which once ingested automatically reduces the level of adrenaline released into the blood of a Somali to reduce the clan madness, affinity and allegiance beyond reason in the name of equally defending his clan rights or wrongdoing.

And If you really want to know how we Somalis react to any negative connotations against our clan just check the comments section of the tens of thousands of Somali websites available online. Social media has not been spared either as Facebook and twitter lead in that front. Almost all articles, opinions and news carry a comment section where ordinary readers most of who are Somalis themselves express their views.

Let me state clearly here that this article is never intended to ridicule or negatively impact the quoted websites, writers or contributors but rather to simply justify my point that clan interests often blind us and surpass national interest pulling us down into the abyss of clan chauvinism.

For the record the worst offenders and supporters of this backward reasoning are the elite and the most learned amongst us Somalis. Yes, I have said it and its the damn truth. It is so sad that those of us who are learned and who ought to led the ignorant majority are the worst offenders and misusers of the clan card?

Really? No wonder Somalia is taking too long to heal and settle because of this double faced clan card the learned folks keeping pulling.

Can the real Somali in us stand up?

With the above self explanatory personal plea not to turn this observation into one-big-clan-ball, sample the following links I randomly picked from several Somali websites. This does not endorse or implicate the said sites but rather is intended to be viewed as an example. I must also admit apart from some of the hate filled responses, I found some remarks rib-crackingly funny!

1. http://www.hiiraan.com/op4/2014/jan/52852/clan_federalism_poison_injected_in_the_somali_mind.aspx

Check out some of the comments:

Jama fartaag· Top Commenter (signed in using Hotmail)

Honestly this person is clueless go and see whether Mogadishu is one clan city or not before you jump to wrong fake conclusion.

The only way out Somali problem is federalism with democracy. When implement good federal system 95% Somalis will feel more comfortable where they live within Somali territory.

Yixisqil Xababaaq · Top Commenter · Works at Self-Employed


Janno Gale · Top Commenter · Iska waran secondary school

Kuwaan daaroodka sheegtaa waxay ku oran lahaayeen sidaan Mr Culusoowoow.

These people who claim to be Darood (Clan) should have said the following to Mr. Ulusow

He goes ahead to post a Somali poem that starts like this:

Mar haddaad Hawiye tahay - As a Hawiye (Clan)
Aniguna Daarood ahay - And am a Darod (Clan)

ashekow (signed in using yahoo)

Ahmed Said; Dr. Ulusow has never been against federalism. He is only against the clan based federalism. The system itself has no problem. Today's Somali federalism is neither good for Somalis in general nor make anything to the clans orchestrating today. It is misguided and badly designed federal system. What kind of federal system can call the defection of its federal government? It is a joke bro!

Tanadeh Tanaad · Top Commenter · Stanley, Falkland Islands

This guy must be getting social welfare. He has all the time in the world to author this puerile articles every now and then.

PM Sharmarke should appoint this guy for a post in the local government of GURICEEL so he can shut up for good.

Usama Farah · Top Commenter · Perth, Western Australia

Puerile? I wonder what makes you say that. They guy seems to have legitimate talking points.

2. http://hiiraan.com/news4/2015/Feb/98139/djiboutian_in_fight_for_fortune.aspx - This is a story about a Djiboutian opposition tycoon accused of links to terrorism.

Check out some of the comments:

sigmasoma1 (signed in using AOL)

Well, there were one dictator and one thief. The thief was the right hand man of the dictator but the thief put his hand deep into the dictator's pocket. The dictator felt it and tried to grab the thief's hand but he skipped and disappeared into the bush. Now the dictator has to catch the thief so this damn ass is worse then the dictator.

gedigedow (signed in using yahoo)

who is this arab man mothers fuckers this is somali land

Ali Abdi · Top Commenter

SOMALI-Aamaanadii buu labaxsade, markii horeeba soo isagu xoolihii shacabka lagadhace nin carab ah gacanta umagalinin?

ENGLIS-He fled with whatever he was entrusted with, in the first place isn't he who handed over the public wealth to an An Arab?

Zami @ 2/14/2015 12:36 PM EST

Top Three Somali Traitors

1) Abdullahi Yusuf
2) Hassan Sheikh
3) Omar Guelleh

wiifgarow @ 2/14/2015 9:19 AM EST

This Arab is an Isse (A CLAN). Only his actions make an Arab. All Mankind are Issas and All are Equl. I suppose you are not familiar with either of those declarations mr Bashir

bashir326 @ 2/13/2015 6:05 AM EST

Is this a joke or a bad dream?
This onion chewing ARAB wanted to become the president of Djibouti.
This is not Yemen my friend.


This is now me speaking! Surely, the above conversations are just but a tip of the iceberg!

Back to my point about the clan madness amongst Somalis, I sometimes wonder what can Somalia really do to undo the chest thumping and superiority complex around the myriads of clans which people continue to kill for, steal for or even shamelessly defend it with their own blood and pride.

I wish I knew a way out of this complex and sensitive issue that touches on our own very existence.
You meet a Somali man anywhere, after the normal greetings the next question he would most likely throw at you is always this:

Warya adigu yad tahay?

Hey, what clan are you?

You are expected to say your clan, sub clan, sub-sub clan down to your family.
I used to try to avoid answering this question but over the years my resistance has somehow faded largely due to the numerous arguments my resistant has led to.

So what makes us so intertwined with our clans? why is the clan issue so important in Somalia?
The answer to that lies in how our forefathers used the clan for personal gain and protection. During those old days, the clan protected you and your precious herd of camels from robbed by other rival clansmen, which was the order of the day then as riches amongst Somalis then so measured on how much camels you had. The more camels a man had the richer and nobler he was!

Times have changed my fellow Somalis, we no longer keep camels or live in those old days. Can we sober up please and stop being so trivial.

A simple Somali man in the streets working so hard to earn a decent life is simply Mohamed, Ali, Warsame or Guled. But as soon as he becomes rich or famous then he becomes Abgal, Marehan or Habar gidir.
What is this nonsense?

As Muslims this is actually contrary to the teachings of Islam. Allah says in the Holly Qur’an in Surah al-Hujurat Chapter 49, Verse 13: "O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise (each other). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of God is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And God has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things".

Even with this clear verse that is well known by many Somalis, we continue to look at each other along clan and tribal lines and segregate against each other or look down on one another.

I sincerely hope we will learn from our mistakes and stop making a fool out of ourselves. This madness must stop and we have not love each other and stop the bloody war that continues to rob us of our sons, daughters, mothers and fathers.

If we don't stop, we might end up having no more Somalis because at this rate we are killing each other on flimsy grounds of tribal or sectarian beliefs, then God forbid, we might as well as disappear on the face of the planet.

Peace, salam, nadab!

Somalia independence week celebrations kick off in Mogadishu

Mogadishu, June 26, 2015 - Today is 26 June the day when the Somalia flag was hoisted for the first ahead of full independence 4 days later on the 1st of July 1960

In the capital Mogadishu, celebrations to kick off the independence week started have started in earnest as hundreds of people, politicians, security officials and members of the diplomatic community converged at the Mogadishu mayors official residence for a Somali flag hoisting event in commemoration of the 26 June when the sky blue flag with a 5 pointed star was first hoisted in Mogadishu 55 years ago at the same venue.

President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud led the nation in the celebrations which was also attended by the Prime Minister, ministers and other leaders.

President Hassan wished all Somalis a happy birthday and urged them to desist from being used to break or cause havoc in the country reminding the people that Somalia is on course to reclaim its place among world nations and called upon the Somali people to redouble their efforts and to work and support the government ongoing efforts at reviving the Somalia sovereignty with the help of the world.

Celebrations to mark the Somalia independence week is expected to continue culminating with actual Independence Day celebration on the 1st July.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Luis Suarez, the best and yet bad-boy of world football.

Its 2:26am Mogadishu time and am glued on my TV set watching the mouth watering quarter final clash between hosts Chile and cup holders Uruguay in the first game of the knock out stage of this years Copa America in Santiago, Chile, South America.

While looking at the Uruguay line up, I overhead the English commentator describe the Uruguayan national team as the "Cup holders who have struggled to score".

This statement forced me look at the Uruguay line up and its only then that I realized why the cup holders have struggled to score. The answer is Luis Suarez.

The 28 year old Suarez might still been infamously remembered for the wrong reasons like biting Italy's Giorgio Chiellini or his racist chant against former Manchester United black French player Patrice Evra by calling him a monkey.

Suarez was banned in both occasions and is actually conspicuously missing from this years Copa America finals for his lengthy FIFA ban for biting Chiellini.

Love or hate him, Suarez is wonderfully gifted player and simply one of the best strikers in the world at the moment. He has just helped his club Barcelona from winning the coveted UEFA Champions League after beating Italian powerhouse Juventus in the 2014-14 finals played in Berlin, Germany .

Two things made me remember Suarez that are both interconnected and which I believe could easily summarize why I highly rate the Uruguayan striker.

When the shot tempered Suarez left Liverpool following his lengthy FIFA ban, the Merseyside club struggled to find his replacement as his goals, his runs and his constant menace and terror on defenders was solely missed by Liverpool prompting the Merseyside club to finish a lowly 6th position and 25 points adrift of champions Chelsea.

Liverpool definitely missed Suarez's services and more importantly his goals.

Now that he is missing for Uruguay, its no wonder they have struggled to score in the Copa America, which they won thanks to Suarez's magic. He scored four goals then and was voted the player of the tournament for helping his country win the fourth Copa America cup. He is also his country's all time goal scorer with 40 goals.

So what makes Luis Alberto Suárez Díaz special?

well, he is a fighter, a goal poacher and a workaholic striker who makes life very difficult for defenders. When he is not busy biting, abusing or hitting defenders, he is happy scoring from all angles whether its by scraping a goal from no where, or dancing his way through defenses or simply by scoring from a dead ball situation or free kick for those who are not familiar with some of weirdest of football terminologies which beats common knowledge like dead ball!

By Guled Mohamed.

When Guled is not thinking, watching or writing about football he is busy writing about Somalia in his capacity as a journalist, blogger and or public relations /strategic communication expert. Follow Guled on twitter: @guledke

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Kenyan public find themselves between a hard place and a rock

Al-Shabaab has attacked again, but at least this time round they decided to be men enough and attacked a Kenyan military base in Lamu and of course they were not only repelled but were killed like insects dying from a deadline insect repellent or spray losing 10 of their fighters as well as a cache of weapons and ammunition including rocket propelled grenades and automatic rifles.
This does not mean that I condone this barbaric groups attack whatsoever but we know in the past they had gone for soft targets and killings of innocent unarmed people so now that they have at least tried their luck in vain at a military target it’s a positive move even though generally committing such heinous attacks anywhere is simply against the true teachings of Islam which the group has continuously maligned.

My biggest worry however is the effects of such Al-Shabaab attacks on ordinary people. Whenever you speak to residents of any site of a terror attack anywhere in Kenya their story of grief is always the same, that they find themselves between these vagabond attackers who have no regards for life whatsoever as well as our own trigger happy security personnel who instead of going for the real culprits simply round off any Dick and Harry, beat them up and lock them in the name of a security crackdown.
We all know what unfortunately happened in Garissa when unknown gunmen killed military personnel sometimes last year. A military unit descended on the town of Garissa, rounded up locals, beat them up and did not only stop there but went ahead and burnt “Suuq mugdi” market which is the main source of livelihood for many Garissa residents.

This was not only uncalled for but counterproductive because you simply loose trust of the people you swore to protect as well as destroy the same country you also swore to protect because as far as I know Garissa is in Kenya. Some people have even compared the governments reaction to the Garissa attack and the cold blood murder of so many police officers in Kapedo which the government never retaliated like in Garissa when in reality more security personnel were unfortunately killed in Kapedo than Garissa.

This double standard should stop because no life is sacred than the other and the government must treat all Kenyans equal because true justice knows no tribe or region. Unless of course.

I believe the government has a plan to fight off or prevent such terror attacks which I do not want to know because it is prerogative of the government of the day to provide security, but what disturbs me is the security agent’s reaction whenever they are deployed to scenes of such attacks.

Assuming everyone is a suspect, rounding innocent people, beating them and locking them up is not how to respond to such heinous terror attacks. If this is indeed in the government plan then it is wrong and must be stopped otherwise we might not see any difference between terrorist and professional soldiers or police who are trained with the tax payers money and are supposed to protect people and the country. This jungle rule must stop and security agencies should be the first ones to uphold the rule of law and protect human rights of suspects because at the end of the someone is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

It is therefore unfortunate that many Kenyans who are victims of these terror attacks often find themselves between a hard place and a rock, because Al-Shabaab is out to kill them and the government which is meant to protect them comes round to harass, beat them up and destroy their property. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know that turning against your own people is wrong and am sure this is not a directive from President Uhuru Kenya because our President is a gentleman.

If that is the case, who then has the balls to order hits and public harassment and intimidation like what happened in Garissa.

Guled Mohamed is a strategic communications consultant. The views expressed here are his own.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Will this be Argentina's year to end their cup drought?

Blessed with perhaps the most talented of footballers in the world with the likes of the worlds best player Lionel Messi and other top players like Aguero, Di Maria, Pastore and Mascherano just to name but a few, Argentina is again considered by book makers as the favorite to lift this year Copa America cup to end their drought spell.

But will this be the year for Argentina to end their cup drought?

The South American football powerhouse comes into the Copa America tournament straight from reaching the finals of the last World Cup which is likely to spur them to do better by trying to win.

Messi has just helped Barcelona win a treble of cups including the much more coveted UEFA Champions League which will go along way to encourage the little football wizard to power his country into glory to cement his place among the best Argentina has produced like Maradona.

Argentina's opening match of the Copa America against Paraguay ended in disapointingly 2-2 draw.

This tournament couldnt have come at a better time for Argentina who now enjoys a good form.

Will they ever rise up to their potential? Time will tell.
Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Mending Somalia's fabric: Is the jigsaw shaping up?

There is always a time for everything in this world, in Somalia there was a time when war or killing each other might have been the order of the day but it is no longer the case these days as the strategic Horn of African country continues on a road to recovery and development.

A good case to study in Somalia is the lucrative southern port city of Kismayu. Until recently it was the most contested and fought over city in Somalia largely due to its modern sea port, fertile hinterland that is good for agricultural productivity ans blessed with all season pasture in a country whose main economic activity remains to be pastrolism deeply anchored in its nomadic culture.

Just three years after the liberation of Kismayu from the much loathed Alqaeda linked militants Al-Shabaab, locals there seems to have found a coexistence formula to share power in a civilized manner through consensus, mutual understanding and agreement contrary to their old ways of defeating each other by the barren of a gun.

The recent inauguration of the Interim Juba Administration parliament and swearing in of a parliamentary speaker is a major milestone towards the revival of Somalia and a step in the right direction towards not only realizing peace and stability but getting the Somalia jigsaw puzzle together.

Just like a painting during its sketching period, it might be hard for us to notice Somalia shaping up but if you look carefully I think we are unknowingly busy sketching it via the Federal State formation process as stipulated in the constitution. We now have Jubaland, Puntland, Interim South West Aministration with the Central State of Somalia in the pipeline. Two more regions, Hiiran and Middle Shabele are expected to also join to form a State.

Once all the States are formed, it will be much more easier to administer the entire country throughly devolution and joint cooperations between the various States and the National Government. The Somalis must support ongoing efforts to revive back their nationhood.

I know there are so many problems with many people or even communities feeling left out but what Somalis must never forget is that a weak government is better than no government. This is why it is important for all Somalis to work together and agree to make concessions for the sake of peace, which as we all know is precious and has no value.
Tuesday, May 5, 2015

US Secretary of State John Kerry makes a historic surprise visit to Somalia

Mogadishu, May 05 - US Secretary of State John Kerry made unannounced historic visit to Mogadishu to meet with Somali leaders from the national government and those from the Federal States to discuss bilateral issues mainly focused on security, reconstruction of Somalia and anti terrorism efforts in the first ever visit by a sitting US Secretary of State in the Horn of African country, a security official confirmed on Tuesday.

Kerry visit to Somalia came after his first visit to Kenya where he had a video conference chat with Somali refugees at the Dadaab refugee camps home to over half a million Somali refugees amid rising tensions in Kenya following a series of terror attacks in the East African country blamed on Somalia militant group UGUS or the Union of the Massacre of Somali Community, a new name brandished by the government.

Kerry pledged US assistance to the Somali refugees and urged Kenyan not to withdraw its forces from Somalia as part of the African Union peacekeeping Mission in Somalia.

Mogadishu was locked down ahead of Kerry's visit which was never made public leaving local and international media to speculate about the visit.

"John Kerry secretly came to Mogadishu to meet with Somalia President, Prime Minister and a few other Somali leaser to discuss security especially on the ongoing US led counter terrorism operations in Somalia as well as discuss US reconstruction efforts and support to Somalia. His visit was kept a secret to avoid any security lapses due to the volatile security situation in Somalia," a female security official who did not wish to be named told www.guledmohamedblogspot.com

Somalia, is a strategic country located in the Horn of Africa where the US has vast interests ranging from hydrocarbon drilling to the control of the busy Indian Ocean sea trade via the Gulf of Aden. However, the country is slowly recovering from over two decades of civil war and is now battling an Al-Qaeda affiliated UGUS militants.

The US is Somalia's biggest financial backer, trains and supports the Somalia national army and is also the single biggest funder of humanitarian activities in the Horn of African country directly through USAID or through the UN and international humanitarian agencies.
Monday, May 4, 2015

Somalia's Spy Chief orders use of new name for militants.

Mogadishu, May 03 - "From now onwards we do not want to hear the media using the name Al-Shabaab which is a good name meaning youth because that name and their actions do not correspond, the government has decided from now onwards the group will be referred to as UGUS which stands for Ururka Guumadka Ummada Soomaaliyed", loosely translated in English as Organization for the Annihilation of the Somali Community, Somalia's Spy Chief General Abdirahman Mohamed Tuuryare said during celebrations to mark World Freedom of Press Day in the capital Mogadishu.

Me think this is exactly what the blood-letting militants ought to be referred to. So what? That is who they are and its a perfect description of their horrible actions.

However, this is the catch. Renaming the militants, I believe, would not be as easy as selling it to the media and worse off by threatening journalists with arrest should they refuse to comply.

In my opinion such sensitive PR issues need strategic communications, which is what the government needs to do by going back to the drawing board and come up with a good communication plan on how the name UGUS will stick to the militants but not by enforcement.

The Spy Chief General Tuuryare went ahead to explain why the government thinks this new name suits the militants. He said the group is best known for massacring innocent people in Somalia, which is a reality, and hence the new name UGUS.

What really worried me was his admission that the government was aware the militants alias UGUS actually infects their new recruits with the deadly HIV Aids virus before they brainwash them slowly until finally convincing them that instead of dying with AIDS and going to hell they are better off to blow themselves up with a free ticket straight to heaven!

Talk of the creepiest propaganda machine by the militants alias UGUS laced with deception of the highest degree.

If indeed this turns out to be true then we have a crises at hand. No wonder the militants alias UGUS always claim they have so many suicide bombers in line ready to go to heaven! Imagine having all those HIV positive would-be suicide bombers ready to grab the next flight to heaven! what a prank the group pulls off on this clueless young boys!

Gen. Tuuryare said the government considers the militants alias UGUS as a diseases which affects those who join it. He said unlike normal diseases where someone is required to go to a doctor, in the case of UGUS victims their doctors are Somalia government security forces who after arresting them take them to jail instead of a hospital. He said the government has to immunize its people against this deadly disease called UGUS which is out to completely wipe out the Somali race!

The Spy master urged the media to take side with their government and people against a group that has declared a total wipe out of the Somali people including the media because it is the same group that assassinates journalists and continues to do so to date.

Last year 5 journalists were murdered in cold blood by the militants in Somalia. So far this year one journalist in the agricultural rich city of Baidoa has already been murdered by UGUS together with his wife in bed as they were deep in their sleep in the wee hours of the night.

It is yet to be seen whether the media will abide by these new government regulations which is a high tech aerial battle of the airwaves with the militants who seem to have perfected the use of social media which is believed to be their biggest source of recruitment where they easily prey on their victims especially among disillusioned Diaspora youths facing an identity crises from the culture shock of being brought and raised in a far flung country away from the ideals or morals of the Somali culture which however primitive it might sound compared to Western cultures subdues youngsters and instills discipline and respect especially among his old peers and parents.

Otherwise, how do you explain a privileged Somali youth in the diaspora who has better opportunities and more importantly a safe and conducive environment to somehow brainwashed to blow himself up!

It just doesn't add up, I cant get it?

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Somalia awaits #MayPac historic boxing bout.

MOGADISHU-THE HORN OF AFRICA, MAY 2, 2015 - It has been touted as the biggest fight of the century and the most lucrative bout in the history of world boxing and just like the rest of the world many boxing fans from in Somalia will not be sleeping tonight as they anxiously await the much hyped boxing match between American pound-to-pound best defensive fighter Floyd "Money" Mayweather against his livewire challenger, Manny Pacquiao from the Philippine's.

A walk in the streets of Mogadishu revealed an unknown love of boxing in the streets of Mogadishu, with the news of the early morning bout dubbed #MayPac in the social media from the tow fighters initials dominated the streets talks and the Mogadishu coffee houses chitchats.

Support for the two boxers was almost shared equal with Mayweather slightly edging out Pacquiao. Just few years ago such enthusiasm for any sports would not have been openly revealed when the Al-Qaeda linked Al-Shabaab militants ruled much of southern Somalia banning all forms of sports or entertainment including even the traditional colorful Somali weddings.

Thanks to the improving security and the ouster of the militants, the people of Somalia can now enjoy watching soccer, movies even dare attend weddings.

"Go, go, Mayweather, make us proud," ranted 57 year old Ahmed Gedi who claims to be Floyd Mayweather diehard fan who has been watching boxing since the days of Mohamed Ali. "I believe Mayweather is currently the best boxer in the world and I can't wait to see him maul the little Filipino Pacquiao because Mayweather has never lost any fight, that is how good he is,"

Even the ladies were not left behind, 23 year old Shamsa Ibrahim said she supports Manny Pacquiao because according to her he more handsome than Mayweather.

"Manny is a superstar, he is loved by millions of people in the world because he is down to earth and very simple. I hope he beats the American boxer," she said, at the famous K4 junction in Mogadishu.

Electronic business was brisk in Mogadishu as locals who did not have cable TV's were seen doing last minute shopping for TV sets and local pay TV decoders so that they don't miss the much awaited bout.

I met Adan Mohamed at an electronic shop bargaining for a decoder to watch the match.

"The fighting had slipped my mind, that is why am trying to buy a decoder now and fix it before the match begins," the 45 year said, "I just love boxing. I want Mayweather to win because he is a better fighter than Manny. Many people in Somali will be watching the fighting because Somalis generally love sports,"

Speaking from the northeast post city of Bosasso, Abdi Hassan said he plans to sleep early tonight so that he does not miss the fight scheduled for 4am Somalia time.

"Many people in Somalia know about the fight because they watch local and international televisions and also because we have many boxing fans too. I have been waiting for this bout for many years and I cannot miss it now that it has finally come to pass. Am with team Pacman," he said.

Further south in the port city of Kismayu, which was
a few years ago a no go zone let alone people there watching any kind of entertainment, people said the boxing provides them with a rare opportunity to relax and away from their daily struggles

"I wish the fighting was much earlier in the night. I will now be forced to sleep very early in order to wake up by 4am so that I can watch my most favorite boxer Manny Pacquiao square it off with Mayweather. It will be an incredible duel that boxing fans across the world have been waiting for, I can't miss it come what may," Abdinasir Nur, 19, said by telephone.
Friday, May 1, 2015

Somalia referees receive FIFA training

Mogadishu, April 18 - Two instructors from Egypt and Jordan have arrived in Mogadishu to conduct a three day high level training and fitness test for 30 local and international Somalia referees as part of the World football body FIFA support to increase their fitness level and football knowledge which is a major boost for the country as it continues its road to recovery.
FIFA Instructor and Africa Regional Development Officer Ahmed Al Shanawi from Egypt and Hassan Mohamed Hassan, a Jordanian FIFA Fitness Instructor conducted a 3 day refereeing training and fitness test for Somalia referees officiating in the second division, first division of the Somalia premier league as well as some International referees and assistant referees from Somalia. The training started on 28 April and is expected to end on the 30th of April.
The Somalia Football Federation is a member of FIFA and is the only organization mandated by FIFA to manage football in Somalia. FIFA supports Somalia with such high level technical trainings and has in the past provided material support too like the construction and carpeting of Banadir stadium. Somalia has three football divisions that bring together over 20 football clubs. For the first time in the country history, the local league has also attracted foreign players from Nigeria, Kenya and Uganda
Speaking on behalf of the government during the opening ceremony to officially launch the FIFA Somalia Member Association Refereeing Training and Fitness Test at a psoh Mogadishu hotel, Assistant Minister of Youth and Sports Osman Adan Dubow reiterated the government’s commitment to support sports and the youth.
“I sincerely wish to thank FIFA and the Somalia Football Federation (SFF) under the leadership of its charismatic Chairman Abdiqani Hassan Arab for their unflinching dedication to continue engaging the youth and entertaining the Somalia people with football and such high level training to improve the sport. We want to assure them that the Somalia government and people are ready to cooperate with them because football is the most loved sports in Somalia,” Assistant Minister Dubow said.
SFF Chairman Abdiqani who also spoke during the launch of the program thanked the FIFA officials and urged Somalia referees to be disciplined during the training course show dedication and hard work in order to benefit from the experience of the FIFA instructors.
“Referees are the backbone of our football because without proper training and incentives they can easily bring the game into disrepute and hence the need to increase their knowledge and fitness level in accordance with FIFA standards. Somalia is represented in international matches by 9 referees but we want to produce more international referees and we can only do so with such high level training,” Abdiqani said amid applause from the referees and officials who attended the colourful event.
For his part the FIFA Africa Regional Development Officer Ahmed Al Shanawi from Egypt lauded Somalia referees’ progress and promised to share their experience with them. He said FIFA is impressed by Somalia’s recover and is ready to continue supporting Somalia football.
“There is a period Somalia was not good and Somalia was not in the plans for FIFA courses. So now FIFA is happy, very happy. This year I think FIFA have sent a lot of good things for the referees and also next year God willing we will send more and more,”
Somalia referee Aweys Abdullahi Sheikh is one of 9 other Somalia international referees and assistants. He said such high level training keeps them fit and well prepared for their hard task of officiating a football match. He hopes to one day officiate in a world cup final match.
“I am an International Assistant Referee. I officiated in many international football matches like in Tunisia where I took part in a match between Libyan and Chad. I also officiated in Angola this year. I have also taken part in a match between Burundi and Egypt. I have also been in Djibouti several times and many other places. I became an International Assistant Referee in 2014. I hope to learn more and gain more experience so that I can officiate a final world cup match in 2018, that is my dream,” he said, with a broad smile at Banadir stadium, venue of Somalia referees FIFA fitness training.
Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Meet the Libyan warlord who feeds on immigrants

Mr. Magafe, the Libyan warlord who feeds on immigrants.
Somalis are very good at nicknaming things and even people. The name Magafe literally means the one who never misses in Somali and that is what Somalis use to describe a Libyan warlord who has made a business out of kidnapping poor immigrants heading to Europe via the Sahara desert.
He waylays for immigrants in southern Libyan and has over the years built a network of freelancers said to be mostly Tuareg militias across the Libyan Desert snatching any immigrant crossing the Libyan border.
He then goes to illegally detain the immigran’ts until when they pay off a ransom to buy their freedom. Talk of slavery in the 21st century!
After he is paid a ransom, at least he is descent enough to take the immigrant’s across the desert to the coastline and hand them over to other human traffickers who charge them a certain amount of money to take them across the Mediterranean Sea to Europe via Italy.
Mr Magafe’s kidnapping business has grown so huge that it is said that he has a fleet of 4x4 vehicles, horses and even camels specifically bought to patrol the expansive Libyan Desert in search of immigrants.
He commands dozens of battle hardened-Tuareg militias who fought for the Libyan President Colonel Muammar Gaddafi and who are inhabitants of the desert themselves giving him an edge over the immigrants as his foot soldiers know every hiding place in the desert including the entire oasis where travellers rest during the hot humid day, which is the only location you can find a well or water source which in the desert means survival or death.
As a result of Mr. Magafe’s cruelty on the immigrants, it is believed hundreds if not thousands have died in Libya either in the hands of Magafe himself from torture and at times even assassinations.
If you thought that is cruel enough of Mr. Magafe wait until you hear what he does to beautiful immigrant women.
Survivors say any beautiful woman caught by Mr. Magafe naturally becomes his wife until when her family buys her off like a slave. His libido must be abnormally high since it is said that he sleeps with more than 4 or 5 women a day at times during the high season when there are many immigrants crossing the Libyan desert on their way to Europe.
His militias are said to also rape women at will or even sodomize young boys at will. The cruelty meted on the poor immigrants is simply mindboggling.
I started hearing about Mr. Magafe sometimes last year but I first thought he was simply an amateur trying to eke out a living in chaotic Libya. But then his name started going round Somalis and you’d hear stories of how Mr. Magafe has kidnapped Somali immigrants whom then he forces to call their relatives and ask for ransom to release his captives.
There is no picture or video available to show this man called Magafe, at least not any I know of or heard of leaving this sad story to remain a harrowing mystery.
This week one of my colleagues received a call from his brother who claims to have been kidnapped by Mr. Magafe and urging the brother to pay $3000 or else he will be killed
This bad news has understandably disturbed my friend. They have met as a family and have been forced to contribute money to send to Mr. Magafe.
I tried to speak to Mr. Magafe in vain, as he could not speak English. He could only speak his Libyan Arabic language, but from his horse voice I can imagine what kind of a face he was wearing, it must be a very angry face of a human slave trader in the 21st century.
If you have any information about Mr. Magafe, including pictures or videe please send to libyamagafe@gmail.com
We are trying to collect as much information and evidence as possible to bring Mr. Magafe on trial for his crimes against humanity.
Change starts with you and me. Let us save humanity.
By Mohamud Hassan
Leverage Media
Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Vote of confidence for Somalia security forces.

I have reported on Somalia since 2005 covering fighting, elections and peaceful spells but I must admit I have never been impressed by the zeal and genuine patriotism of the Somalia police, military and intelligence officers like their recent display during the IGAD ministerial summit in Mogadishu.

Understandably, Mogadishu was closed down for this important meeting because it was the first of such high level meeting by IGAD in 28 years. Ordinary people were somehow affected but many of those I met in the streets on the day were generally happy saying such important conferences are a sign of good things to come.

My crew and I were kept at a checkpoint for 2 hours a few meters from the SYL hotel where the conference took place despite having all relevant documentation and our press badges. They told us they were ordered never to let anyone through and politely asked us to call their superiors.

After hours of calling and begging, we were finally allowed after a Somalia paramilitary police captain clad in black uniforms, never seen before, and an AMISOM captain were dispatched by the office of the President to fetch us.
We had to weave through several checkpoints, which we also had to introduce ourselves even though we were accompanied by senior officers from Somalia and AMISOM.

Finally we were allowed into the premises one hour and a half after the conference had started and we went ahead to cover the historic meeting which will go into history books as a major milestone for Somalia.

As the IGAD Foreign Affairs ministers were busy deliberating in the meeting, which was opened by President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud of Somalia and closed by Prime Minister Abdirashid Omar Sharmarke, outside and within the SYL hotel, Somalia security forces and their AMISOM counterparts were busy moving around questioning anyone they came across all in the spirit of making the meeting a success.

The special forces from the police who were wearing black stood out from the rest as they paced up and down in their masked faces revealing hawk eyes , even when it was so hot in the mid-day Mogadishu sun or even when the guests were having lunch, they swiftly paced around simply to make sure nothing went wrong.

It is my sincere hope that the Somalia security forces – police, military and the Intelligence officers – will continue with such zeal as the country continues to slowly make inroads towards peace and development.
Lest I forget, the Somalia fire fighters should also be lauded for their presence in the conference to prevent any fire disasters even though nothing happened.

I salute them all and hope they will keep up the good job of protecting the country and its citizens, from the small and the big, the poor and the rich alike without fear or favour.