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Survival struggle for Somali IDPs kicked off land in Mogadishu


Saturday October 2, 2021

Habibo Hafow Adan, a widowed mother of eight, has been living with her children in one of two flimsy huts belonging to relatives after being forcibly evicted from their own IDP camp in the Somali capital, Mogadishu.

“Sometimes we get something to eat, other times we just sleep hungry. We are not living our best lives now. There are no clients to wash their clothes,” Habibo told Radio Ergo.

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She was among 2,000 IDP families forcibly evicted by the private owners of land housing 11 IDP camps in Dharkeynley district in June.

Life for Habibo was not always so harsh and unpredictable. Her husband used to provide for the family from the produce of their farm in Goof-gadud, Bay region.  But when he died, she had no farming skills to take over the farm and no financial capacity to hire any workers. She abandoned the farm and fled to Mogadishu with her children.

She said they were given three days’ notice to vacate the camp, where she had built a hut. She worked as a cleaner until COVID19 disrupted her only source of income. Most people she used to wash clothes for have bought washing machines, she said, eliminating her role.

Currently, two of her children are sick but she has no money to take them to hospital for treatment.

Mohamed Ibrahim Adan, another IDP who was evicted from Aw-bariyow camp, has joined 25 families paying four dollars rent a month each for the private land where they have put up makeshift huts.

“We were not even given a proper notice period. We were told to move within three days and when I pleaded with him, he said it is up to you and I don’t care. I was evicted forcefully,” he complained.

“I used to work as a labourer, but now I can’t work because of my back pain. I haven’t been working for four months now. I just stay at home with the children.”

Mohamed’s family are surviving on the $3-$4 his wife makes on the days she finds a cleaning job.

“None of my children are enrolled at school or madrassa because I don’t have the money. The teachers too have families to feed, so my children are just staying home. My eldest child is 14 years old. I would like them to get educated but my life situation won’t allow me,” he said.



 





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