More than 400 children can now resume their education after the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) completed renovation works of a school destroyed in a bomb attack three years ago.
Dr Qamar Primary School – established in 2009 in memory of Dr Kamar Aden Ali, a former minister in Somalia’s Transitional Federal Government, who died in a terrorist attack in Mogadishu – was badly damaged in a suicide bomb attack, leading to its closure in 2016.
The attack forced 420 children to abandon school, prompting AMISOM to undertake renovation works, late last year, to ensure the students return to school.
“The renovation of the six classroom block will facilitate access to education for hundreds of Somali children who were affected by the bombing and ensure they continue with their education,” the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (SRCC) for Somali, Ambassador Francisco Madeira, said during the handover of the school to officials of the Federal Government of Somalia, yesterday.
The SRCC said the building and refurbishing of schools as part of the Quick Impact Projects (QUIPs) programme being undertaken by AMISOM to provide basic necessities to communities and also help stabilize the country.
“In order to ensure the growing youthful population can make meaningful contributions rather than become a threat to the country, the federal government and the federal member states must ensure that children have access to education to help them prepare for the challenges of nation building,” said Ambassador Madeira.
He pledged AMISOM’s continued support to the federal government and the federal member states, saying the implementation of QUIPs was critical in the execution of the Somalia Transition Plan.
The plan, which was approved by the federal government and development partners, aims to guide the country towards assuming full responsibility for its own stability.
The Federal Government Minister of Women and Human Rights Development, Deqa Yasin Yusuf, thanked AMISOM for its contributions, saying the renovation of the school had given the children an opportunity to a fundamental requirement – basic quality education.
“With the support of AMISOM we were able to renovate the school, and the students can now resume classes,” Ms. Deqa said.
The handing over ceremony was also attended by senior AMISOM officials, including Adebayo Kareem, the Head of the Protection, Human Rights and Gender Office.
To ensure a smooth transfer of responsibility to the federal government, AMISOM is undertaking a wide range of activities aimed at improving the security and living conditions of residents.