20. VOXPOP (Somali) Osman, Mogadishu resident:
I come here every Friday and I am happy with the improvement being made because it allows me to swim safely.
21. VOXPOP (English) Mohamed Yusuf, Spokesperson Mo
gadishu Mayor’s Office:
“You see I am here without my security guard, I am enjoying with my generation
without fear. I am not fearing now compared back to three years ago, al Shabaab was controlling this area, no one, none of us could come here, even us, so today we are free and we have to thank the African Union, our friends of the African Union, they give us an opportunity
to defeat al Shabaab.”
22. Med shot, pan from man swimming to the beach 23. Wide shot, boat with lifeguards patrolling
Sun, sand and plenty of fun, mark a day at the beach; but this beach is in one of the least expected places. Lido beach in the heart of the Somali capital Mogadishu has come alive and people here are making the best of the weekend. This was not the case just 3 years ago when al Shabaab, the Al Qaeda aligned extremist group run this city, but times have changed. With thousands of city residents finally able
to enjoy their country’s seashores
, a team of lifeguards has been trained by the municipality to ensure their safety and reduce the number of drowning cases that have occurred in the past.
The project was initiated by the Mogadishu Mayor’s office and the district
commissioner of the area, tasked with implementing it. Abdullahi Hussein Hassan was a teacher before he became the commissioner; he remembers one of his students drowning at this very beach and was eager to safeguard others.
“I am very happy that
this project has been initiated a
Abdullahi Hussein Hassan
As you can see there are lots of people here not only from this area but all parts of the city and outside as well. They have come here and
are having fun and after they can go home safe.”
The team of 15 lifeguards, volunteer their time and boats over the weekend, they
are mostly fishermen from the area and the commissioner’s office
provided them with training and gives them with fuel to run their boats.
“People often drown because the waves are heavy an
d it pulls them to sea and
many don’t know how to swim,
so we go and rescue them.
Omar Haji Mohamud
, a fisherman turned lifeguard. “
Every weekend we save many lives without pay, we volunteer our time and experience. The districts commissioner provides us with fuel we need