31 October – Source: AMISOM – 300 Words
The UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict, Virginia Gamba, has commended AMISOM for ensuring the protection of children in conflict. On Wednesday, Ms. Gamba concluded a three-day working visit to Somalia to assess efforts to protect children from conflict-related violations. As part of the visit, she held discussions with child protection focal persons in the AMISOM military, police, and civilian components, including the Deputy Head of AMISOM, Simon Mulongo.
During the meeting, Mulongo, who is the Deputy Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission for Somalia (DSRCC), briefed her on AMISOM’s programmes and activities. “We train our troops on child protection at pre-deployment, induction and in-mission levels, to remind them of their obligations. We monitor compliance, and troops in violation are held accountable. We also mentor, advise and support the Somali security forces,” the Deputy SRCC said. Ms. Gamba noted that some of AMISOM’s child protection approaches could be adopted as best practices for the protection of other children in conflict situations. “If you don’t mind, we would like to explore your expertise and see how it could work for some of our other operations,” said Ms. Gamba.
An AMISOM Human Rights expert, Ms. Ulrike Kahbila Mbuton, briefed the UN top official on AMISOM’s efforts to uphold the rights and welfare of children in the mission’s area of operations. “AMISOM has been carrying out child protection activities both within the mission, and other activities in support of the Federal Government of Somalia and the member states. AMISOM holds vocational training programmes for disengaged child fighters to support their reintegration into society, she Kahbila. She also revealed that AMISOM has instituted standard operating procedures on handling child detainees and internally displaced people’s camps and established a toll-free line to report incidents of violence against children.
31 October – Source: Radio Ergo – 447 Words
At least 6 000 families have been displaced in Badale in southern Somalia’s Bay region after flash floods caused by torrential rain hit the town. Fadumo Moalim Abdirahman, from Horsed neighbourhood, said she spent the whole night of 20 October in her house, submerged in water. Youth from the local community, who were organising search and rescue in the area, rescued her and her seven children, including three girls and four boys, aged from three to 12 years. “I had a hut and iron-sheet house and all that we had in the house, food and utensils, were washed away. We are left with nothing, even my 12 hens died in the water,” Fadumo told Radio Ergo.
Fadumo and her family are now sleeping outside as they have no shelter. “We came here for safety and there was no flooding here at the time. But we do not know if floods will reach us here. We have no food, though we are getting a little from other people,” she said. Meanwhile, Fidey Mohamud Isack’s family and dozens of others are surrounded by water in Axmed-gurey surburb of Badale and have no sanitation facilities. They moved to a nearby area of higher ground. Fidey told Radio Ergo they had nowhere to sleep and had barely eaten for the last seven days. She said they were surviving on tea using the few kilos of sugar and tea that was all they had managed to rescue from the floodwaters. “We have no mattresses and utensils, we just ran for our dear lives!” she said.
Siraji Yussuf Sheikh, a wholesale trader in Bardale, told Radio Ergo that his stock of 120 bags of sugar, rice and flour worth US $4 000 was destroyed by the floods. “We cannot open our stores because they have been inundated with water by the flash floods and we are yet to get support,” he said. Bardale district commissioner, Mohamed Isack Hassan, told Radio Ergo that several suburbs of the town remained under water since the flooding occurred on 20 October. He said 240 goats were known to have drowned and countless food stores and houses were submerged. A fuller picture was not yet available……
31 October – Source: SONNA – 935 Words
Today, I am very happy to visit the beautiful Puntland, one of the important states in Somalia. On behalf of the Chinese Embassy, I would like to take this opportunity to extend cordial greetings and good wishes to the government and people of Puntland State, and sincerely thank the government and people of Puntland State for their long-term support and warm and friendly reception to our visit. This is my second visit to Puntland State. When setting foot on this beautiful land, we feel the friendship of Puntland State. The purpose of my visit is to enhance the friendship between the Chinese and Somali people, investigate the investment and business environment in Puntland State, and promote investment cooperation between the two sides. In the first half of this year, Mr. Deni, President of Puntland State, visited Zhejiang Province of China. The two sides discussed areas for strengthening cooperation, enhanced mutual understanding and deepened friendship. I would extend the appreciation to President Deni and the government of Puntland State for their efforts to develop friendly and cooperative relations with the Chinese side.
Somalia is a beautiful country with great development potential. Somalia is in the international important shipping channel of the Mediterranean Suez Canal-Red Sea and its geographical position is unique. Somalia is close to the Middle East and Europe, and it has its obvious advantages in the Indian Ocean,Somalia is a country with a large land and plenty of its great potential to develop wind and solar energy,Somalia has more than 3 300 kilometers of coastline, many natural ports, and the development of maritime shipping is unparalleled. Somalia has a vast sea area, rich fishery resources, broad prospects for the development of blue economy and marine industry. There are abundant labor resources and young people account for a high proportion of the population in Somalia. Somalia has its rich resources in tourism and is an ideal place for the development of tourism industry. Somalia also has a large number of overseas patriots, who are important investors in Somalia/. The most important thing is the Somali people are diligent, intelligent and creative. This is a country full of hope and bright prospects…..
31 October – Source: Xinhua – 228 Words
Somali national forces backed by the Jubaland state army on Wednesday killed seven Al-Shabaab extremists and injured eight others in an operation in Lower Juba region in southern Somalia, an official said on Thursday. Shirwa Omar Barush, a senior officer in Somali National Army who was one of the commanders leading the operation told journalists that the joint operation was conducted in areas bordering Jamame town. “We started the offensive in Koban village passing through Bangeni, Arare and Mana Mufo villages and there was stiff resistance from the militants, but our forces finally drove them out of those villages and we killed seven of them and injured eight others,” Barush said.
He added that among the dead was the militants’ commander of the battle. Residents said there was confrontation in the town. “Al-Shabaab militants in the town were attacked by the government army, both sides exchanged heavy fire, but the forces are now in the town and the militants are outside of it,” Hawa Elmi, a resident told Xinhua by phone. On Oct. 19, the Somali army killed 20 Al-Shabab militants in an operation in the central region of Hiran. The Somali army backed by African Union Mission in Somalia, chased Al-Shabaab extremists from the capital Mogadishu in August 2011, but the militants still hold swathes of rural areas in central and southern regions conducting ambushes and planting landmines.
31 October – Source: Kenyan.co.ke – 285 Words
The Directorate of Criminal Investigations on Wednesday, October 30, came out to clarify reports that suggested that they had nabbed several terror suspects and recovered some Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). DCI took to social media to allay the fears stating that the messages had been circulated by malicious individuals who intended to spread fear in the country. “Attention!!! We wish to notify members of the public that the allegations being circulated on Social Media of some IEDs [have] been recovered & several terror suspects arrested by DCI and Anti Terror Police Unit (ATPU) detectives at Matiangoni, Kilifi County are both false and misleading. “Detective[s] nor any other Police Officer recovered any such Explosives nor arrested any such Suspects at the said area,” DCI tweeted.
The Sleuths further revealed that all security agencies from Kilifi, Ganze, Rabai, Mariakani SGR Terminus, Mombasa SGR Terminus and DCI Units across the region had been put on high alert. Officers from the Coastal region also confirmed that they had not conducted any operation in relation to the reports circulated in the social media. Detectives added that they had launched a manhunt for the original author of the message and the intention of the alarming story. The information widely circulated on social media platforms alleged the operation, which led to the recovery of IEDs was conducted by the Anti Terror Police Unit (ATPU) in Matiangoni, Kilifi County.
In a related incident, a matatu driver on Wednesday, October 23, performed a heroic act when he outwitted suspected Al-Shabaab terrorists in an attempted terror attack. The driver (name withheld) in Mandera South was travelling along the Elwak-Borehole 11 Road with eight passengers on board when he was flagged down by about 10 gunmen.
30 October – Source: Daily Nation – 503 Words
A police officer, who survived an attack in which two Cuban doctors were abducted in April, took the witness stand on Wednesday before a Nairobi Magistrate Court sitting in Mandera. Constable Ramadhan Barua, said he was picked at the Mandera police line early in the morning on April 12 by a police car and together with Constable Katambo Ngala they headed to the residence of the two doctors. Mr Ngala was shot dead in the incident. The court officials arrived in Mandera Wednesday to visit the scene of abduction and to see how the environment where the incident happened looks like. Dr Landy Rodriguez (a surgeon) and Dr Herera Correa (a general practitioner) were kidnapped in a daring road ambush by suspected Al-Shabaab militants, who killed one of the police officers escorting them.
“We were dropped off by the police vehicle that returned with our colleagues, who were on the night duty, we stayed to wait for the hospital vehicle that always transported the doctors,” Mr Barua told Principal Magistrate Martha Nanzushi. He was testifying in a case where the driver of the vehicle in which the two doctors were travelling, Issack Ibrein Robow, is facing four counts including committing a terrorist act, kidnapping, falsely obtaining Kenyan registration and being unlawfully present in Kenya. He said he noticed from the many concerns raised by Dr Rodriguez that their driver had not honoured a previous evening agreement on the time the medics would be picked. “The doctors had asked the driver to pick them as early as 7:30 am but he did not show up. Dr Rodriguez asked my colleague to call the driver,” he said. He said the driver, Mr Robow, only showed up at about 8:45am and they left the compound immediately. “We were stopped by the governor’s convoy to give way for him to leave his residence before we followed them behind,” Mr Barua said……
29 October – Source: UNICEF and WHO – 942 Words
The Somalia Polio Programme has not confirmed any new cases of circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 2 (cVDPV2) in children with acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) since 8 May 2019. The last case of circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 3 (cVDPV3) in a child with AFP was detected and confirmed on 7 September 2018. A total of three cVDPV2 cases have been reported in Somalia across 2019. In total, 15 children with polio have been detected in Somalia since the onset of the ongoing concurrent cVDPV2 and cVDPV3 outbreaks in 2017.
Four new PV2 results were reported by KEMRI laboratory during week 42 and are pending sequencing results. All of these PV2 samples originate from children who reside in areas where mOPV2 vaccination campaign was recently conducted (last targeted mOPV2 campaign was held from 19-22 August 2019); Two PV2 results were identified from a child with Acute Flaccid Paralysis (AFP) (SOM-SAH-BER-19-007) and one contact from Berbera district in Sahil region. One PV2 result from a contact of a child with AFP has been detected in Hargeisa district in Galbeed region, the contact of SOM-WGB-HAR-19-016 was confirmed with PV2. One PV2 result (SOM-BRI-ALU-19-CC-3) was detected from community sample in Alula district in Bari region (silent region). Sequencing results of the two PV2 cases ( index SOM-NUG-GRW-19-003 and contact SOM-WGB-HAR-19-014 ) reported last week were confirmed PV2-Sabin……
OPINION, ANALYSIS AND CULTURE
31 October – Source: Radio Ergo – 410 Words
Pregnant women in Abudwak, central Somalia, are thankful to be receiving free delivery services at a private hospital in the town, following closure of the only public health facility that had been providing free maternity care. Nasra Bishaar Ismail, 23, gave birth to her first child by caesarean delivery at the private Abduwak general hospital five days ago, after a 32 –hours in labour. She had been getting ante-natal care at the hospital but feared she might not be able to afford professional help for delivery. “I was so worried about what would happen to me because I had no money and would not have been in a position to seek help from private hospitals,” Nasra said. “The baby and I are recovering very well, though with some bruises caused by the birth complications,” she said. Another mother, Hamdi Mohamed Ahmed, underwent prolonged labour in her village of Yamaarugley for six days. She was finally transported to Abudwak by her family. “I was informed of the free delivery services offered by the hospital but when I went into labour, I opted to stay at home. But that did not work out and so I was brought here,” she said.
Hamdi also had financial problems, as her family lost 140 goats during drought over the last three years, and would not have been able to pay for private delivery. “I failed to deliver the baby naturally as I was suffering from anemia. Then I was brought to these doctors,” she said. She was very weak and needed blood and intravenous fluids on arrival. Dr Mustafe Mohamed Hassan, head of the maternity department at the privately run Abudwak general hospital, told Radio Ergo they were offering free delivery services to fill the gap left by the only public health centre in Abudwak that closed several months ago due to lack of funding.
“Before we started offering this free service, people used to go seeking medical help in Galkayo, Dhusamareb and Adado towns. But now people know about the services we are offering. Only minutes ago, we helped a mother through a stillbirth, she was from a remote area,” he said. “People pay nothing. Since we began this free service, we have assisted 30 mothers.” The public health centre that had been providing free maternity services in Abudwak was Ibado hospital. It was run by the International Medical Corps (IMC), which ceased its support in June due to lack of funding for its programmes in Galmudug.