UNICEF Somalia Review January 2000

General situation
Security: Police in 'Somaliland' arrested some 30 people allegedly for engaging in activities contrary to Islam.

Political developments: President Egal visited Berbera and held meetings with elders of Sahil region in an effort to resolve administrative problems. The dispute over the administration of Sool region between 'Puntland' and 'Somaliland' continues. The 'Puntland' President, 'Abdullahi Yusuf, called upon the Dhulbahante clan to clarify whether their allegiance was to 'Somaliland' or 'Puntland'. 'Somaliland' President Mohammed Ibrahim Egal had earlier issued a similar call. The Speaker of the 'Somaliland' Parliament who is also a member of the Dhulbahante clan issued a similar call.

Missions: Several missions visited the zone. They were from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA) and the Saudi Arabian Chamber of Commerce.

Economy: The exchange rate of the 'Somaliland' shilling fluctuated between 2,800 and 2,860 shillings to the dollar.

Programme activity

Health/Nutrition: A health and nutrition co-ordination meeting was held in Hargeisa on 12 and 13 January, 2000. The 'Somaliland' Minister for Health and Labour (MOHL) chaired the meeting. A seven -day health management training workshop was held in Hargeisa from 15 to 20 January, 2000 for 12 participants who included six regional medical officers and six hospital directors.

UNICEF in collaboration with the MOHL conducted a nutrition survey covering children aged under five years in Sheikh Nur displaced persons' camp in Hargeisa town. A total of 500 children were surveyed and 335 households covered. Results will be out later.

Expanded Programme on Immunisation (EPI): A five-day orientation training workshop was held in Burao town for 30 EPI staff and mother and child health centre (MCH) team leaders from 12 health centres in Togdheer, Sool and Sahil regions. The training focused on management, repair and maintenance of health centre cold chains (vaccine storage facilities).

Reproductive health: A 15-day training course was held in Hargeisa for 14 nurses and mid-wives from health centres in Galbeed, Awdal, Sahil and Togdheer regions. The objective of the training was to upgrade their skills so as to enhance the management of essential obstetric services in the community and at health centres. The training was supported by UNICEF and implemented by the Ministry of Health and Labour (MOHL).

Water and Environmental Sanitation: Construction work on the Zeila water project is progressing. Rehabilitation of water and environmental sanitation facilities for five schools in Hargeisa was completed during the reporting period.

Education: Text-writing for the lower primary school curricullum has been finalised and passed to the national steering committee for review and approval.

The steering committee consists of 35 members and is divided into seven groups. Each group reviews one of the followin subjects - Somali, Arabic, English, Islamic studies, Science and Social Science.

Youth Education, Development and Protection Programme (YEDPP): UNICEF has rehabilitated five basketball/volleyball courts, one resource centre and the Hargeisa Stadium as part of its programme to cater for the physical and recreational needs of youth.

Media: The Africa Correspondent for Stuttgarter Zeitung, Christoph Link visited the zone as part of a visit facilitated by UNICEF. He met 'Somaliland' President Mohammed Ibrahim Egal and visited Berbera port and met its manager.

Baidoa, Bardera, Jowhar, Mogadishu and Kismayo Offices
South/Central Zone of Somalia

General situation

Jowhar Liaison Office: Jowhar town remained relatively calm during the reporting period. However, bandits near Balad in Middle Shabelle region killed a Somali CARE International staff member.

Mogadishu Liaison Office: Mogadishu remained calm with the main sea and airport closed. Some local businessmen invested in a new seaport in Medina district with the support of a Mogadishu faction leader.

Some Mogadishu-based faction leaders, Hussein Mohamed Aideed, Osman Ali Hassan 'Atto', Mohamed Kanyare, Dr Hussein Hajji Bod and Hussein Addow met at the Shamo Hotel in South Mogadishu to discuss formation of an administration for Mogadishu and the reopening of the city's main air and seaport facilities. However, Muse Sudi another faction leader did not participate in the talks. The Lower Shabelle region remained calm under the control of the Islamic Court militia.

Baidoa Liaison Office: Baidoa and surrounding areas remained relatively calm.

Bardera Liaison Office: Bardera and the rest of Gedo region remained relatively calm. Peace talks were held between the two Somali National Front (SNF) factions in Dollo. They agreed on a ceasefire as a move to enhance peace in the region.

Security: An International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) food convoy was ambushed between Sakow and Bardera. During exchange of fire between a security escort and bandits, one person was killed and two injured. The food eventually reached its destination in Garbaharey and Burdubo.

Kismayo Liaison Office: Kismayo town remained relatively calm during the reporting period. An ICRC field officer, Mr Rage Dahir, was ambushed near Hosungo village by militiamen who wounded him in the legs. He was on his way to distribute non-food items in Hosungo. Fighting between Ogaden and Shiqal villagers had resulted in the near-total destruction of Hosungo village.

Programme activity

Health: A meeting was held in Mogadishu between UNICEF staff and Sahra Mohamed Nur, the Executive Director of Cogwo NGO, to discuss the possibility of establishing MCH centres. UNICEF supplied two medical kits to Hamar Jajab and Muslim Aid-UK NGOs in Benadir region.

Sub-National Immunisation Days (NIDs): UNICEF and WHO co-ordinated the implementation of the second round of polio NIDs in three regions of the zone. The regions were not covered during an earlier round that covered most places of Somalia.

UNICEF staff made supervisory visits to the SOS-Hospital in Mogadishu and the Mogadishu North Cold Chain. SOS staff confirmed that there was an increase in measles' cases among children over the age of five years.

Nutrition: Monitoring of food and livestock prices was undertaken in Bardera by UNICEF staff. The results indicated that prices of most items had increased.

Supplementary feeding: UNICEF distributed a total of 30 mts (1,200 bags) of Supermix supplementary food supplies provided by the European Community Humanitarian Organisation (ECHO). The supplies were distributed to three MCH centres in Baidoa town through NGOs. UNICEF also supplied 400 bags of Supermix to Ufurow health post to be distributed to 1,000 malnourished children. Baidoa hospital distributed 50 bags (1,250 kg) to malnourished child patients in the hospital.

Water and Environmental Sanitation: Work on construction and rehabilitation of boreholes and other water projects continued in Western Bay region and Hoddur through UNICEF support. UNICEF is also funding rehabilitation of a borehole in Bardera town.

Cholera prevention and preparedness: Several co-ordination meetings on cholera control and prevention were undertaken in Mogadishu, Bay, Lower and Middle Jubba, Lower Shabelle and Gedo regions with health and WES partners. Issues discussed included community organisation and mobilisation, training and education, and raising awareness for preparedness and prevention of cholera.

Out of 80 stool samples taken from Benadir Hospital in Mogadishu, 24 tested positive for cholera.

In response, UNICEF and its partners who include Medecins Sans Frontieres - Spain, Somali Red Crescent Society (SRCS), Muslim Aid UK, IARA, COGWO, Action Contre La Faim (ACF) and WHO have undertaken chlorination of water sources, established oral rehydration therapy centres and opened cholera treatment centres.

UNICEF in collaboration with InterSoS, an Italian international NGO, assessed water supply needs of Berdale, Dinsorr and Bur Hakaba districts of Bay region. UNICEF staff conducted WES assessment visits to areas served by the UNICEF Kismayo Liaison Office including Kismayo and Jamame Districts in Lower Jubba region and Jelib district in Middle Jubba region. It was discovered that 34 water sources out of 54 hand-dug wells rehabilitated by UNICEF were functioning while nine wells had been dismantled although the platforms were still in good condition.

Education: The reconstruction of the UNICEF-supported disabled school in Jowhar and Makalango Primary School in Jamame District was completed.

More than 500 children will benefit from the reconstruction of the schools. UNICEF distributed education supplies - textbooks and chalk - to Fanole and Ahmed bin Hambal primary schools. Other supplies which included wheel barrows, rakes, shovels, axes, brooms and four garbage bins were also provided by UNICEF to improve school hygiene.

Youth Education, Development and Protection (YEDPP): UNICEF undertook compilation of profiles of organisations and groups involved in youth activities and sports in the Zone. Rehabilitation of a football playground in Baidoa was completed in Baidoa. The stadium was later renamed the Dr Ayoub Stadium in honour of Dr Ayoub Sheikh Yerow, UNICEF's Central/Southern Zone Health Officer who was killed in a banditry attack in September 1999.

The Millennium Peace tournaments were successfully concluded on 31 December, 1999 and trophies awarded to winners of various competitions.

The tournaments were held in Merka and Baidoa.

As part of YEDPP, six footballs, six volleyballs, three volleyball nets and 36 T-shirts were provided to InterSOS Jowhar for three schools in the area.

UNICEF also supplied books in English and Somali to COGWO NGO for their women's rights education programme. A total of 44 copies of different books on child rights were provided to the UNICEF-supported youth resource centres in Merka and Jowhar.

Media: The BBC Somali Radio Service undertook coverage of the UNICEF-supported Millennium peace tournaments in Baidoa and Merka.

Female Genital Mutilation: COGWO NGO conducted an FGM study in Mogadishu co-ordinated by UNICEF. The results of the study and report are under preparation.

We welcome your feedback on the UNICEF Somalia Review. You can access other information on UNICEF Somalia by visiting our website at:

Should you have further queries on the UNICEF Somalia Review contact:

Robert Kihara,
Asssistant Communication Officer, UNICEF Somalia:


Julia Spry-Leverton
Communication Officer
TEL: 254-2-/623958/623950/623862/623959/350410
FAX: 254-2-520640/623965