Somali refugee wins local seat in Italy
ROME, Italy - Somalis living in the diaspora have once again set a record, following the most recent election of a refugee in Italy, Somalia's former colonial master, and which hosts thousands of people from the war-torn Horn of Africa nation.
Abdullahi Ahmed Moalim was elected the results represent a local council in Torino, a city within Italy that was d considered one of the most influential areas during the famous Roman Empire that ruled Italy for several years.
His uncle, Dr. Abdurahman Baadiyow, said his nephew arrived in Italy about 12 years ago and has been too much into the European nation's politics. He fled Somalia due to persistent internal conflicts and the Al-Shabaab threat.
"Congratulations Abdullahi Ahmed on his election to Torino, Italy. Abdullahi is my nephew who fled to Italy as a refugee. May God protects his two countries," Dr. Abdurahman Baadiyow said in a tweet.
Early this year, Abdullahi was awarded honorary citizenship of the town of Setting Torinese in Italy, further underscoring his immense contributions towards the local community in Italy. He also received an award commonly known as Altiero Spinelli.
"Dear friends, I'm glad to share a good news with you: after being awarded honorary citizenship by the town of Settimo Torinese, today I received the "Altiero Spinelli Prize" from the European Commission in recognition of the work done with the European Solidarity and Mediterranean Festival of Ventotene," he was quoted by the local media.
"I'm extremely honored and proud for this award. This is not only a prize for what we have accomplished so far but most of all an encouragement to go ahead this way. As usual, I want to say thank you to all the people with whom I have shared this path."
His quick rise in politics is a manifestation of the development of Somalis living in the diaspora especially on matters of politics and good governance. In fact, he joins a host of Somalis serving in elective seats such as in Norway, Australia, the UK, Canada, and the US.
For instance, Ilhan Omar, a Somali refugee in the US, is serving her second term as a congresswoman in the 5th District of Minnesota. In Canada, Ahmed Hussein is serving as an MP and minister in the current government.