President urges Somali youth to harness energy and commitment to rebuild Somalia

Asad Cabdullahi MataanBy Asad Cabdullahi Mataan

Speaking at a Somali Youth Day celebration this evening, H.E. The President, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, called on the young people of Somalia to use their energy, ambition and commitment to build a better Somalia.

Referencing the influence of the Somali Youth League, who in the 1950s were instrumental in ensuring that Somalia’s struggle for independence was successful, H.E. The President said, “Today, on the occasion of Somalia Youth Day, it is good that we acknowledge our history and those men and women who, though not very old, or very experienced, used their courage and energy to pave the way to build the nation we have today.”

H.E. The President described his pride in Somalia’s young people, saying that, “It is truly remarkable to see our youth, who have survived the destructive power of war, study, work and build up their lives against all odds.” He continued that he was encouraged to see young Somalis from the diaspora return to take part in rebuilding Somalia, stating, “What connects our young people- no matter where they are from or where they have lived till now- is their belief in this nation; they share more than a culture and a language, they share the same hopes and aspirations.”

More than 70% of Somalia’s population is under the age of thirty. H.E. The President acknowledged that many challenges remain for Somali youth, but he encouraged them to participate in creating the future they want, and to work with their elected representatives to do so.

“We must work together if we want the best for each other. As a government, we have responsibilities to you, and as young citizens, you have responsibilities to the government: you must participate, you must challenge what you want changed, you must seek for truth and demand hard work and results from the people you have elected to represent you,” said H.E. The President.

H.E. The President urged the crowd celebrating Somali Youth Day to engage with change, create and seize opportunities and play their part in determining the Somalia of the future.