A senior official of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) has urged Somalis in the regional diaspora to return home and help rebuild the nation.
Maj. Gen. Fidza Dludlu, AMISOM’s Head of Mission Support, who led a delegation of officials of the mission to meet with representatives of Somali diaspora communities in Kampala, Tuesday, said he believed this present moment was timely.
“Advances have been made in Somalia and there is need for people with skills to come back and help rebuild the country. Due to the many years suffered in civil war, there is now an urgent need for highly skilled people in Somalia,” the General said.
Dludlu, who stood in for the African Union Special Representative for Somalia (SRCC), Francisco Madeira, shared the gains AMISOM has made in the fight against Al-Shabaab terrorists who have been waging an insurgency against the Federal government and highlighted efforts being made to restore peace and security.
Somalia is slowly emerging from decades of war and instability, evidenced by a booming construction sector, livestock trade, fisheries and service industries, telecommunication and money remittance services and an estimated growing GDP, Dludlu said.
With the help of the United Nations, AMISOM and other international partners, the country has successfully established federal administrations and plans to conduct legislative and presidential ballots before the end of the year.
Despite a visible presence, AMISOM has succeeded in degrading the presence of Al-Shabaab terrorists. Earlier this month AMISOM’s Ethiopian contingent thwarted an Al-Shabaab attack on a military base in Halgan, killing more than a hundred militants.
Responding to queries about security of the country, the AMISOM Deputy Force Commander, Maj. Gen. Mohammedesha Zeyinu, said Somalia is relatively secure due to sacrifices made by the AMISOM forces.
There are about 2,000 Somali youth currently enrolled in various Ugandan universities, according to Abdinasir Hashi Hirsi, a representative of the Somali Students’ Association in Uganda, who was present at the meeting.
Abdiaziz Mohamed Hassan, a student at Kampala International University, urged AMISOM to also help improve education standards in the country besides securing the country. He cited unemployment as a major cause for youth radicalization and said Al-Shabaab militants were luring young people with money.
“The youth are the ones who have been misled by the terrorists and are the ones who are killing people. I urge AMISOM to establish projects that enable the youth get better education and live a better life,” he said.