News / Africa

Journalism Brings Hope for Young Somalis

Journalism Brings Hope for Young Somalians Despite Dangeri
X
August 15, 2013 1:38 PM
They are 17, 18, 20 years old. They are journalists in Mogadishu, one of the most dangerous places in the world for reporters. At Radio Shabelle, the biggest station in Somalia, most of the journalists are young and don't have much experience, but they are devoted and passionate, despite being targets of the terrorist group al-Shabab. Emilie Iob and Patricia Huon interviewed some of these journalists for VOA on a trip to Mogadishu.
Emilie Iob and Patricia Huon
They are 17, 18, 20 years old. They are journalists in Mogadishu, one of the most dangerous places in the world for reporters. At Radio Shabelle, the biggest station in Somalia, most of the journalists are young and don't have much experience, but they are devoted and passionate, despite being targets of the terrorist group al-Shabab.

Kept like a fortress, this building is the headquarters of Radio Shabelle. It is here, in Mogadishu, that Hidaya Abdullahi Sabriye comes to work every day. She is only 17, but she already has been a journalist for two years. She said her job is her passion.

"I decided to become a journalist first because I liked it. And also because I felt the community needed journalists to report on what is happening," she said. "I believed that, with the crisis that Somalia faces, you need independent journalists who help the people by reporting well on what is happening."

Sabriye is one of the voices heard every morning on the radio. At Radio Shabelle, most of the journalists are young adults, or even teenagers. Somalia is rebuilding, and the media is growing. Journalism is one of the rare sectors that offers job opportunities to young people without a school degree or political connections, according to Radio Shabelle founder and director Abdi Uud.

"The media won't get better as long as Shabab is here and journalists remain a target and they keep shooting the messengers, which are the eyes and the ears of the people. It can be discouraging. I'm surprised and happy to see that the number of media is increasing, Uud said. "The media schools are increasing, and the number of journalists are increasing. Young people are joining. So that brings hope in the future of journalism in Somalia."

A lot of journalists at Radio Shabelle live within the radio's premises. On the roof are dorms where those who are too scared to go back home can sleep. Somalia is one of the most dangerous places in the world for journalists. Last year, at least 18 of them were murdered, and six this year so far. At Radio Shabelle, these young reporters are conscious of risking their life. They don't often go into the field, and when they do, it's only with tight security, said reporter Hassan Sheik Abukhar.

"This is a dangerous job because we can't go anywhere. We can't see our families or attend any program because our security is not good. No one can promise you that you will come back to the station safe," said Abukhar.

But the desire to inform and to acquire professional experience makes them stay. A new measure could, however, exclude these youngsters from the studio. Last month, the Somali government adopted a controversial law that forbids every person under the age of 40 from practicing journalism.

You May Like

Video Experts Warn World Losing Ebola Fight

Doctors Without Borders says world is losing battle against Ebola, unless wealthy nations dispatch specialized biological disaster response teams More

Video Experts: Rise of Islamic State Significant Development in Jihadism

Many analysts contend the group - which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq - has been rebuilding for years More

US-Based Hong Kongers Pledge Support for Pro-Democracy Activists

Democracy advocates call on Chinese living abroad to join them in opposing new election rules for their home territory More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearancei
X
Elizabeth Lee
September 02, 2014 8:57 PM
Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearance

Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Experts See Rise of ISIS as Significant Development

The Islamic State’s rise seems sudden. It caught the U.S. by surprise this summer when it captured large portions of northern Iraq and spread its wings in neighboring Syria. But many analysts contend that the group - which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq - has been rebuilding for years. VOA's Jela de Franceschi takes a closer look at the rise of ISIS and its implications for the Middle East and beyond.
Video

Video Israel Concerned Over Syrian Rebels in Golan

Israeli officials are following with concern the recent fighting between Syrian rebels and government forces near the contested Golan Heights. Forty-four U.N. peacekeepers from Fiji have been seized by Syrian Islamist rebels and the clashes occasionally have spilled into Israel. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forces

A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video US Detainees Want Negotiators for Freedom in North Korea

The three U.S. detainees held in North Korea were permitted to speak with foreign media Monday. The government of Kim Jong Un restricted the topics of the questions, and the interviews in Pyongyang were limited to five minutes. Each of the men asked Washington to send a representative to Pyongyang to secure his release. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti has our story.
Video

Video Turkmen From Amerli Describe Survival of IS Siege

Over the past few weeks, hundreds of Shi'ite Turkmen have fled the town of Amerli seeking refuge in the northern city of Kirkuk. Despite recent military gains after U.S. airstrikes that were coordinated with Iraqi and Kurdish forces, the situation remains dire for Amerli’s residents. Sebastian Meyer went to Kirkuk for VOA to speak to those who managed to escape.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.

AppleAndroid