Somalia: PM visits Dadaab Refugee Camp
NAIROBI, Kenya August 23, 2014 (Garowe Online)-Federal Government of Somalia’s Prime minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed Mohamed and his entourage paid a surprise visit to Somali refugees in Dadaab camp of northeastern Kenya on Friday, Garowe Online reports .
Mohamed was accompanied by internal affairs minister Abdullahi Godah Barre, other government officials, Kenyan politicians who hail from northeast counties and the United Nations High Commission for Refugees [ UNHCR] officials on his critical assessment into the living conditions of Somalis in the world largest refugee camp, Dadaab.
During his visit, Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed Mohamed also toured several sub-centers such as health facilities and schools built in the home of over half million Somalis. He held talks with representatives from the Somali refugees. Asylum seekers talked about the substandard living conditions in the camp.
''70% of the Somali refugees are youth who need bright future, jobs to sustain their lives. For instance I came to Dadaab refugee camp when i was just four years old, i have two children and was part of the delegation,” said Fatuma, Dadaab committee member. “We visited schools and we have seen irregular school syllabus. We urge the government to help this society regain service so that people can return to the country”.
Speaking to the media shortly after his tour, Prime minister Mohamed gave assurances to the refugees, saying his government will quickly address the grievances raised by the Somali refugees in the camp
''There is nobody who wants to live as refugee in the rest of his or her life. Now the people living in these camps are the third generation, it important for us to share our minds so as to came up with a solution to these refugee problem,” Somalia Prime Minister went on.
“The president and I will put more efforts to ensure that all the Somali refugees are returned back to the country,” he said.
The prime ministers visits to Dadaab refugee camp came months days after representatives from countries hosting Somali refugees met and held talks in Ethiopia’s capital of Addis Ababa. The participants promised to continue hosting the Somali refugees until they return back to their mother land.
On the other side, Kenyan government has more recently accused Somalia Government of failing to honour Refugees repatriation agreement .
Mohamed becomes Somalia’s highest-ranking official who visited Dadaab Refugee Camp. Dadaab is a home to over half million Somali refugees who fled from the country’s worst upheaval following the topple of long standing Dictator, Mohamed Siyad Barre in 1991.