Paraplegic Somali graduate vows to bring change as public servant

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Moulid Ali Dukow overcame the challenges of disability to graduate in public administration from SIU in Mogadishu/Fardowsa Sheikh Abdirahman/Ergo

(ERGO) – Moulid Ali Dukow, 25, a paraplegic, is looking forward to changing the world after graduating in public administration from Mogadishu’s Somali International University (SIU) last week.

The optimistic young man from MahasinHiran region has poured his energy into his education since losing the use of his legs as a boy.

After falling sick with an undiagnosed illness, he was taken to Mogadishu for treatment but told by the doctors that they could not do anything to alleviate his condition.

“I started off using crutches when my arms were strong, but later on my arms started getting weak, making it very hard for me to use the crutches, so I opted for a wheelchair,” Moulid told Radio Ergo.

Moulid being interviewed at home by Radio Ergo’s correspondent, Fardowsa Sheikh Abdirahman/Ergo

He completed primary and secondary school in Mogadishu, coming to the top in his secondary exams. From a poor family, he applied for scholarships and accepted an offer from SIU.

“I chose this course as the faculty looks at solving problems. The course teaches you how to bring change,” Moulid said.

“In Somalia, public administrators use power and money but I believe I will not use power and money. Instead, I will conduct my work as someone who loves his people and loves to serve his people.”

Moulid praised the university teaching staff and his 86 classmates for giving him an equal chance and helping him to overcome the challenges he faced.

“I was helped a lot. I studied for a four-year course in a room with wheelchair access. My fellow students helped me with everything I needed,” he said.

Moulid used to drive several kilometres from his home in Daynile district to the university in Taleh on his three-wheeler motorbike. Once he had a narrow escape in a collision with a speeding khat vehicle. He remembers the rainy seasons as the worst time when he had to avoid puddles and potholes on the roads.

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