Monday, September 17, 2012
By Aletta Gardner
Kos Ahmed Muhamed, a Somali woman living in working in Bellville, Cape Town. Picture: Aletta Gardner/EWN
CAPE TOWN - There is excitement amongst exiled Somalis about the possibility of returning to their homeland.
Hassan Sheikh Mohamud was elected president of the war torn country earlier this month.
Many living in Cape Town hope the development marks the end to 21 years of civil war and widespread unrest, which has seen tens of thousands flee the country.
Mohamed Abdi Yusuf fled to South Africa in 2006.
The 30-year-old is among thousands of Somali nationals who live and work in Cape Town.
However, there is burgeoning excitement among Mohamed and his countrymen after a new president was elected.
The election brings new hope that Somalis may soon return home.
“On the night of the election, we were watching it on TV and we just celebrated. We are hoping that now we’ll have a chance to go back home.”
The Somali Community Board estimates some 50,000 Somali refugees and asylum seekers are living in South Africa.
A number of those living in Bellville said they are hoping that the new promise of peace holds so they can rebuild their motherland.