University students going for a break at the Somali National University in the capital Mogadishu on October 23rd, 2014. Classes were held in September for the first time in 23 years after shutting down during the country’s civil conflicts. Dramatic improvements in security in the city enabled the Federal Government to renovated the campus which now has 374 students and six different faculties. AU/UN IST Photo / Ilyas A. Abukar
Mogadishu (HOL) – After almost half a decade, AMISOM has announced that it has finalized plans to transfer control of Somali National University to the Federal Government of Somalia.
The university campus has been the Burundi contingent of AMISOM’s command headquarters. After vacating the facility in phases, the troops will now be relocated to Jowhar.
Mohamed Ahmed Jimale, the Rector of the Somali National University, thanked the AMISOM and Burundi contingent for initiating the transfer and noted the symbolic role the university plays in Somalia’s recovery.
“If you leave this campus operational, it will show the world that AMISOM, especially the Burundi contingent, left behind a golden place that can produce a professional workforce that Somalia will need for its developmental programs. I thank AMISOM and the Burundi contingent for this initiative,” Mr. Jimale stated at the pre-planning meeting.
The meeting was attended by top AMISOM officials led by Dr. Walters Samah, the AMISOM Political Affairs Officer, as well as Ms. Fouzia Warsame and Mr. Hassan Osman Ga’al, both Deans at the University.
Ms. Fouzia, hailed the move by AMISOM, noting that the handover of the facility will boost social development and also present the Somali youth with more opportunities.
“I think our youth are capable but they just need opportunities and this university is a symbol of that opportunity,” Ms. Fouzia explained.
The Somali National University was established in 1954 and obtained official university status in 1969. Since then, it has educated generations of Somali professionals including a number Presidents and Prime Ministers.