Galkayo is the only town in Somalia that the civil war has divided into two parts. It is one of the areas that the collapsed central government of Somalia began to fight the community claiming they were oppositions and anti government. It is where hundreds of innocent people including children, women and elders were killed by either the government or clan militias. Galkayo was one of the worst devastated areas by the civil war and clan conflicts. It is the only town in Somalia that has currently been administered by two administrations with different policy and conflicting ideas.
It is located in a strategic place in the center of Somalia. It is open to Ethiopia, South central of Somalia and Puntland. Galkayo used to be one of the best areas that boosted in business and trading activities before the civil war.
The current security situation in Galkayo sometimes gets deplorable and daily or weekly based killings and other criminal cases usually take place.
KAALO Aid and Development Organization, a local NGO which has experience of conflict resolutions and community mobilization for peace and creation of positive environment has been able to convene two groups from the two sides of the town. KAALO completed a workshop on Non formal Peace and Civic Education held for both sides of the town which went on separately and parallel in North for Puntland and South for Galmudug on 29th September to 1st October 2012.
The project has been funded by DIAKONIA, SWEDEN . For the closing ceremony KAALO prepared to realize its vision for peace and bring the participants and authorities of the two sides in one place for the closing ceremony of the worskhops. The dream of KAALO became reality and the outcome and achievements of the workshops were more than expected.
Closing Ceremony for Workshop on Non formal Peace and Civic Education in Galkayo
(Mohamoud Gure Guled, the governor of South of Mudug Region, opening the ceremony)
Significant closing ceremony was made for the completion of the two workshops on Non formal peace and Civic Education that were held parallel in both sides of Galkayo; North/Puntland and South/Galmudug on Monday 1st October 2012.
After the activities of the workshops of the two sides finished at their locations all the participants were brought together in one place for closing. More than 200 people participated.
Other than the workshop participants many authorities and prominent figures from the conflicting sides participated in the closing ceremony including the Governors from the two sides, MPs, the presidents of the two universities, university students, artists from both sides, traditional leaders, women Organizations, NGOs , journalists from media houses. It was four hours long ceremony and everyone who wanted to make a speech, poem or slogans for peace was given opportunity to state.
Halima Jama speaking on behalf of women groups of both sides of the town)
The table below shows the names of the people who made speeches or recited poems at ceremony
|Mohamed Jama Yusuf||Puntland||Mudug region||Governor of N. Mudug region|
|Mohamud Gure Guled||Galmudug||Mudug region||Governor of S. Mudug region|
|Abdulkadir M. Shirwa||Galmudug||GU university||President of the University|
|Mohamed Igal||Puntland||EA University||President of the University|
|Mohamed Sugulle||Puntland||Traditional leaders||Clan leader|
|Ahmed Musse||Galmudug||Traditional leaders||Clan leader|
|Habio Kuforow||Galmudug||MP||Head of women Affairs|
|Sufi Aw-Ali||Puntland||Artists Organization||Poet|
|Ahmed Osman||Galmudug||Artists Organization||Poet|
|Roble Dirie||Puntland||Youth||Peace activist|
|Halima Jama Elmi||Pl/Galm||Peace activist Or.||Head organization|
|Sh. Mohamed Osman||Puntland||Religious leaders||Member|
Topics highlighted in the speeches made by the Authorities and other prominent figures participated in the workshop closing ceremony were mainly suggestions and recommendations for peace and respect of human rights and they strongly stressed in their speeches by condemning the perpetrators and showed how the people of the two sides are very close relatives, brotherly, sisterly, friendly, parentally and neighborly to each other. They declared together war against security spoilers and killers of innocent people. They strongly recommended working together for making peace between the two conflicting sides. The outcomes of the speeches included:
- The authorities of the two sides will work together for peace building and must have information sharing on daily bases;
- The authorities should create positive environment to enable the people of the two sides come together and discuss about how to end the conflict and live side by side peacefully through reconciliation;
- Holding series meetings between community prominent figures selecting in demographic areas;
- Conducting forums on peace for large number of people from both sides bringing them together aiming to reduce hostility and aggressions;
- Regional and districts authorities, traditional leaders, youth, women groups travel together to rural areas where the pastoralists of the two sides fight in grassing and water and bring them in one place and give them opportunity to speak out and say about why fight and not peace and then create peaceful weather and put an agreement between them;
- Mobilizing mass-walk through the town participated all sectors of the communities of the two sides and break the barrier green line which is an imaginary line between the sides of the town.
- Brining the police of the two sides and create a friendly environment to work together and improve the security of the town.
The governors of Puntland side and Galmudug side Mr. Mohamed Jama Yusuf and Mr. Mohamoud Gure Guled respectively promised that they will work together for peace and reconciliation of the people of Mudug region but they requested for the support of the people otherwise they said they would not achieve the goal for peace and security unless the authorities, traditional leaders, women, youth, and other sectors go together for peace and security which enable the people to live side by side in friendly environment.
(Mohamed Jama Yusuf, the governor of North Mudug region, closing the ceremony).