Turkish aid associations have made important contributions to Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia, which was hit by a harsh drought earlier this year, as exemplified by the work of the Turkish Red Crescent (Kızılay).
Kızılay General Manager Lütfi Akar said they had left “unforgettable work” in Mogadishu, during a visit to Somalia to visit two sites where Kızılay is building two buildings -- one for the Turkish Foundation and one for a vocational school.
Site Engineer Semih Tunçer briefed Akar on the details of the project during his visit. Akar told journalists after examining the site that the 6,500 square meters of land had been given to the Red Crescent by the Somali government. “We are going to build the Turkish Foundation building based on Seljuk and Ottoman architecture. There will be a Turkish bath and a prayer room inside. There will be a museum where Turkish art works will be on display. It will also serve as a guesthouse for Turkish citizens,” Akar said.
He said the second building would be a vocational school that would train professionals in industrial spheres. Akar stated that they had earlier planned a vocational school for the health industry, but later changed the project after the Turkish Ministry of Health ordered the construction of a school in Mogadishu that would provide the same educational opportunities as theirs. He said a range of subjects, including machinery, electronics and computer science, would be taught at the technical vocational school. “The school will have 360 students with boarding facilities for 240 students.”
Akar noted that all the buildings were located in the most central areas of Mogadishu. “Kızılay will leave behind unforgettable work in Mogadishu. They are all charity-oriented works, aiming to support the local populace. Thanks to the generous donations of our people, the Turkish Foundation and school will rise like a monument.”
He said the Turkish Red Crescent would also clean up post-war rubble on Mogadishu's streets.
Turkey is also building an asphalt and concrete plant and a furniture factory in Mogadishu. The tenders for some phases of these projects will be completed within the next six months. These factories are expected to start manufacturing within the next year. Seventy-seven machines from Turkey will be transferred to Mogadishu over the next few weeks to begin work on construction.
In addition to the Turkish Red Crescent, the Turkish Cooperation and Development Agency (TİKA), the Ministry of Health, the Kimse Yok Mu humanitarian association, the Humanitarian Aid Foundation (İHH) and the Yardım Eli Association are active in Mogadishu, helping to build schools, hospitals, buildings and roads.