Somali National University before the civil war
Somali National University compound after the civil war
Renewed Somali National University compound anno 2017.
Construction of the new University Liberary
The Somali National University is located in Mogadishu, the Capital city of Somalia. Mogadishu is a cosmopolitan city with an estimated population of around 2.5 million. The Somali National University, being the only production center of Somali brain-power was established in 1954. It is a semi-autonomous state-owned university governed by a board. It had 13 fully functional departments, 700 staff and more than 15,000 students when the civil war started and remained closed for more than 24 years. Apart from the physical and badly damaged structures, everything else was gone with the war.
On 14 November 2013, the federal government cabinet led by his excellency the Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon endorsed plans to re-open the Somali National University. On 16th of August 2014, his Excellency the President of Somalia Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud officially opened the SNU. In October 2014, the Speaker of the Federal Parliament Mohamed Osman Jawari officially inaugurated the first academic year of the SNU.
This shows a good start and a strong commitment from the government side. But there still remains many things to be done and the capacity of the government is very limited. Therefore, the Diaspora organizations and the International NGOs have many roles to play in contributing the development and reconstitution of the higher education system in Somalia. Particularly the Diaspora has a special obligation since most of the highly-educated people including some of us in Denmark have graduated and benefited from that free of charge system. Many lecturers in the SNU are our colleges and old friends. The Dean of the Economics faculty is also a member of the SSPDO who went back to Somalia two years ago. In fact he has approached us with various project proposals.
After going through the various project proposals and discussing them, SSPDO/SOCDA and SNU came to the conclusion that one project we considered could solve a common problem to both the existing faculties and the future upcoming ones. That is the Construction of a library.
High level education only have meaning when it caters to quality and achieves its mission. In order to achieve these goals, libraries have an important role to play in students` qualities by improving their research skills and information literacy. Library, especially an academic library, and quality education are inextricably tied up. The construction of a library will not only serve the many students and their lecturers but will also serve many other academic citizens for their day to day activities. No other library of its kind or size is available in Mogadishu so far, therefor it is very important and essential to SNU and other private universities.
The situation of the construction of the Library is progressing. The foundation of the construction is completed, the pillars are erected and other construction work has been done. Completion of the whole process of the construction is due to be finished by the end of July 2017.
By the beginning of August 2017 complete constructions of the library and the office are handed over to the Somali National University authorities.
Almost 1500 books are already collected and more books to be purchased soon. Furniture, computers and other necessary equipment are ordered.