Joint Efforts

Puntland Development Research Center (PDRC)
Media Association of Puntland (MAP)
Intergovernmental Academy for Somali Language (AGA)

 

The Puntland Development Research Center (PDRC), the Media Association of Puntland (MAP) and the Intergovernmental Academy of Somali Language (AGA) have jointly held a one-day workshop aimed at improving the use and proficiency of the Somali language in the various media outlets of Puntland. The workshop specifically targeted female journalists that are engaged in the various media facilities operating in Garowe, the administrative capital of Puntland State, Somalia. Thirty female journalists working with radios and TV stations, the print media, and websites have attended the workshop that covered topics such as; the importance of the use of the Somali language in the media, appraisal of limitations on proficient Somali language use in the media, and recommendations for professional self-improvement amongst the journalists.

In his opening statement, PDRC Programme Director, Ali Farah, thanked AGA and MAP Chairmen, Dr Mohamed Afrah and Faysal Khalif, for the continued support to the proficient use and preservation from misuse and derogation of the Somali language throughout Somali inhabited regions in Somalia, Djibouti, Ethiopia, and Kenya. The director reiterated PDRC’s support to the media and highlighted the continuation of similar efforts to enhance the capacities of Female journalists and the media sector as a whole.

The Puntland Minister for Information, Culture, and Heritage, H.E. Abdiweli Hersi, officially opened the workshop. He highlighted the need to include the media as an essential partner in the promotion and preservation of culture and heritage in Puntland/Somalia. The minster also highlighted the Puntland Cultural Week, currently underway in Garowe, where cultural teams from all regions are taking part.

In his turn, the chairman of MAP, Mr. Faysal Khalif Barre stated that, “…this is an opportunity for us (the media) to review our mistakes which threaten the very existence of the Somali language; it is my sincere hope that female journalists will lead these correctional efforts. After all, they are also the future mothers and first teachers of the coming generations.” The chairman concluded.

Dr. Mohamed Dahir Afrah made a remarkable presentation on topical themes and guided group discussions among female journalists attending the workshop. The female journalists appraised the difficulties they meet in their daily journalist work. Finally, He outlined four main pillars for promoting the proficient use of the Somali language as: the education sector, the media, public service sector and literature.

It is worthwhile to mention that the female journalists admitted the discrepancy and misuse of the Somali language in their daily work. The journalists attributed this to a number of reasons including the lack of basic style guidelines, the coinage of new terms adopted from foreign languages, the deterioration of the country’s education system, and the prolonged social upheaval in Somalia.

At the end of the presentations, Dr. Afrah, Mr. Ali Farah Ali and former Puntland Minister of Education Abdi Farah Juha responded to questions from the journalists in a plenary session. Similarly, a number of recommendations were made to improve and maintenance of the professional usage of the Somali language in the media.

The Intergovernmental Academy of Somali Language (AGA) was launched in Djibouti on June 26th 2013; with the expressed purpose of safeguarding and developing the Somali language. The Puntland Minister for information, communication, culture, and heritage spoke at length about the need for the common academy and Puntland governments’ commitment to its success during the launching ceremony. The Puntland government endorsed the establishment of AGA and remains committed to supporting the preservation of the Somali language.

The Media Association of Puntland is the state-level body for the professional and independent media in Puntland State, Somalia.

PDRC is a research center in Puntland State, Somalia. Since its establishment, in 1998, PDRC has supported capacity building for the media and improved their access to remote areas in Puntland State. For almost 2 decades, Interpeace – an international Peacebuilding alliance – has supported successful reconciliation, social integration, and democratization programs through its local partners in Somalia.

For further information please contact:

Puntland Development Research Center (Lead Executing Agency) – alialifarah@gmail.com
The Intergovernmental Academy of Somali Language (Technical Lead)
The Media Association of Puntland (Coordinating Agency) – info@mediapuntland.com