Why will I Celebrate on 18 May? (By: Dr-abdikarim D Hassan)

Although I will not wave a flag or dance in a concert, or take part in a march along the road still, I will celebrate the commemorations of 18th May. After twenty-nine years, we continue to struggle with the same difficulties, challenges, and misfortunes about good governance, tribalism, corruption, incompetence and lack of political maturity, but I will celebrate.  Although we are torn apart and debilitatingly consumed by persistent disappointments with the institutions we put in place to take us out of the misery and devastation of post 18 May era, nonetheless, I will celebrate.


In addition to the currently engulfing panic and anxiety of COVID-19, we are missing the most basic services needed for decent livelihood: poor disorganised education, rudimentary health care services, a deeply stagnated economy, ravaging abject poverty impoverishing large swaths of the society, and the ever-increasing disparity between the poor and the rich have become constant fixtures of our country, yet I will celebrate.


The dream that this country will one day acquire recognition from the rest of the world has become a distinct memory of the past.  that dream and many others for a better governed, stable, and prosperous society became far fetched illusions, their mere entertainment amounts to an illogical fantasy, however, I will celebrate.


Embarrassing and shameful dependency on foreign hand-outs for every aspect of our existence coupled with complete inability to invest in our strengths and resources to, at least, come up with a long term effective plan for the development of this country, has left our decision in the hands of others and emboldened them to dictate, demand and dispense penalties, nevertheless, I will celebrate.


Some prominent intellectual figures and young misinformed youth of this country have been sadly denouncing their allegiance to the cause of their people by throwing themselves into the arms of a fragile entity claiming to own our destiny. Their willingness to volunteer as the dagger that will be vehemently buried into the back of their people has nauseatingly disturbed the majority of Somalilanders, nonetheless, the reality is, their decision, however grotesque and repulsive it may seem, is one of the manifestations of a weakened command and dishevelled national project. yet I will celebrate.


18 May continues to be a symbol of freedom, self-determination, and a strong reminder of what could be achieved when differences are put aside, forgiveness is promoted, and hope and shared destiny are created. 18 May stands for breaking the shackles of the past, liberating ourselves from the constraints of prejudice, tribal bitterness and releasing winges of ambition into a future of boundless opportunities, self-actualisation and fulfilments.


18 May embodies the ultimate sacrifice. It celebrates the lives of selfless men and women who put their souls in the line of duty for others to enjoy the blessings of freedom; they eagerly relinquished the comforts of blissful life for others to escape from the crushing fist of a tyrant and cruel dictator. It signifies indescribable courage of standing up to oppression and claiming justice and equity for their own qualities and for their indispensability for human existence.


Although occasionally its sparks fade by the unscrupulous actions of those it shines for, the light of hope enkindled by 18 May still glows in the distance.; still, inspire us to renew our aspirations for excellence; still seduce us to dream about a better future; still, entice many to fight for justice; and still, urge us to yearn for better leadership and accountable transparent system of governance.


And for these reasons, I will be celebrating 18 May in my own way: locked-down, washing my hands and spreading the message of awareness. stay save.