Published On: Wed, Nov 21st, 2012

Increased educational opportunities in Somaliland lead to greater professionalism

Technical Veterinary School students take part in a field activity April 18th in the Somaliland town of Sheikh. [Tony Karumba /AFP]

Unlike her older siblings, Amran Yonis, a 22-year-old business administration student at Golis University in Hargeisa, said she had plenty of options available to her when she was looking to enrol in higher education in 2008.

“My elder siblings who finished before me had to wait three years because there was only one institute of higher learning, the University of Hargeisa,” she told Sabahi.

Yonis is part of a rising generation of Somali students eager and able to further their education.

Saeed Ahmed Hassan, president of Golis University, said enrolment at his university has increased dramatically. “Three years ago, we had 500 students, but now there are 3,000,” he told Sabahi. “In 2012 alone, we admitted 1,200 students.”

He added that business administration, engineering, sharia law and medicine are among the most popular programmes.

According to the Somaliland Higher Education Board, more than 60% of college students in Hargeisa are women.

To accommodate the influx of new students, the school has rented three additional buildings and constructed a fourth. In addition, the need for more qualified teachers has prompted the university to recruit from Kenya.

The impact of war

The protracted civil war that began in 1991 and the lack of strong government institutions able to uniformly regulate schools mean that degrees from local universities are often not recognised internationally, according to Mohammed Nur, a retired school administrator who consults with the government on education matters.

“The requirement to open colleges or universities is minimal,” he told Sabahi. “Important things such as facilities are not checked and [universities] admit students regardless of what they scored in secondary school.”

Addressing these concerns, the government says it began implementing measures to regulate higher education when it set up the Higher Education Board in 2010.

According to Khadar Ahmed Diriye, the board’s director, 16 universities have been established across Somaliland in the past 20 years.

“We found most [universities] were easily registered previously without proper procedure,” Diriye told Sabahi. To establish a regional standard, the board recently required all universities to re-register and issued them with temporary charters while their credentials are reviewed.

Diriye said the government brought in senior officials from Kenya’s Higher Education Commission to help re-organise the education sector in Somaliland.

Partnering with universities in neighbouring countries

Universities in neighbouring countries are partnering with local colleges on a wide range of specialised programmes.

For example, thanks to a partnership with Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology in Nairobi, Golis University now offers a master’s in business administration.

In addition, Ethiopia’s Admas and Alpha Universities, and Uganda’s Fairland University have opened campuses in the region.

Hassan of Golis University said these collaborations provide local universities with the opportunity to adopt best practices in management and curricula development, strengthening Somali universities’ capabilities and credibility.

Challenges and opportunities ahead

University graduates are expected to boost the highly depleted employment pool in Somaliland, said Mohamed Dahir, a manager at Somaliland Civil Service, the recruitment arm of the regional administration.

College graduates hired by the administration in the past two years have already helped transform government institutions, he told Sabahi. He said these professionally trained employees have helped streamline the administration’s revenue collection system and improve efficiency at airports and other ports of entry.

“We have employed trained accountants, clerks and immigration officers, among others, who are technology savvy,” he said. “We have recently witnessed very good results. Previously, virtually all our personnel lacked proper education or training, which affected service delivery.”

By Keyse Yusuf

- Sabahi Online

Displaying 22 Comments
Have Your Say
  1. hadhka says:

    Ka dhinta cadagow! Fantastic progress. Maansha allaa

  2. Kayse says:

    Separatists always party anything they hear without knowing the full picture. Quality not quantity. There are so many private schools and universities across Somaliland region but apart from Amoud, they are all there only to generate money from the poor kids and families.

    The kids are left with no jobs because the education they received is not even equivelent to high school education in Uganda. Many graduates are forced to spend thousands more to study abroad or take the dangerous journey of migration.

    There is no quality education in the region and each so called teacher counts the head of students as dollars. All they talk about is "1 student = $10-20 per month, 100 students minimum in order for me to generate $1000-$2000". I know this because my own cousins asked me to invest in it.

    The materials are not regulated, there are no standards, every man/school prints his own materials from the internet. You should see for instance the English curriculum, it is lower than grade 4 in Australia. The books do not even make any sense.

    I have personally read the materials of Calaami School, Darasalaam, Alpha University, University of Hargeisa and few others.

    I understand there is shortages of everything but please stop misleading the poor die hard separatists abroad who have not set foot in the region since 1988.

    80% of the youth are unemployed, most of these students are girls, as soon as they graduate they are forced to marry or stay at home no one hires them, the guys develop depression and many either take boats or chew khat.

    My advise for the regional council is to bring in professional people and start providing regulations and filter the materials and have standard form across the board.

    Quality not quantity.

    • Layla says:

      To Kayse,
      We all know that everything can not be prefect.However, (Something is better than nothing) and when some parts of Somalia the youths are recruited to terrorist groups and they are encouraged to kill here Somaliland they learn.! amazing eh!

    • Hoodo says:

      Cassis nijaas. While this kids are going to school did you ever ask yourself what you are doing? Let me tell you what you are doing is xashiid, fitna, hate, nifaak and dying of others moving forward.
      Wow waxa Maxa laga abuurey. Subxanaalah I swear I have never seen someone so consumed with hate and fitna like this fool.
      I would ask you to re evaluate yourself and especially your mind.
      We might have disagreement I understand that it’s natural but their are ways to express your disagreement. Hate,fitna,jealousy and ninsence talks are not the appropriate ways to display or reason your disagreement.
      I feel really sorry for you and kindly ask you to get some help.
      Your daily insults will do nothing to somalilanders or Somaliland but they all show your character and the psychopath you are.
      May god save you from yourself Amin.

  3. misslovely says:

    kayse faqash
    looma baahn aragtitaada meeshan somaliland la dhaho rag baa u tashaday labaatan sano ka hor somaliland way dhaqaadee adna taageer ama dee meel laga tashaday labaatan sano ka hor ka guu guu lee sida ciyowga yaa kuu joojinaaya

  4. Reer-Dunbuluq says:

    You see, Mr Kinsi SHEEGATO, how hate blinds and consumes you.

    Thank God! At least our children learn how to read and write in peace. this positive news that double daggers your heart

  5. Irir Samaale says:

    Don't worry northerners your investment on your skills will not be in vain and will come to good use
    to better the Union in the future Insha'Allah

  6. Buuxiye says:

    Somaliland needs more Medical Vets to deal with the increase in Wounded animals in the Region!

  7. Ahmed says:

    Kayse cashoolee caruurtii aad fara xumayn jirtay baad doonaysaa Xamar.. Xamar rag baa ka taliyaa madaxaa gooyaaa..

  8. Ahmed says:


    What a biologica liar!

    • Hoodo says:

      Did you mean biological liar? Some little extra esl will be helpful in terms of eradicating minor typos.
      I think you got ample time to go back to those classes and the benefit will also include little extra aussie dollars from the welfare program which helps out right now.

  9. Ahmed says:

    80% of Somaliland youth are unemployed? Yes they are beause they dont wana work..When and where did Somali youth work..? They dont work in UK,, and US., let alone SL. One the reason that somaliland is being established is to change the lazy culture that we ineherited from Communist Siyaad.

  10. Ahmed says:

    Former students of Hargaysa university went and study cambridge and Oxford univeristy.. They went all corners of te world for furher studies..Kayse Jahil, doesnt he know there is UN report about SL university al the time… and HU is always leading universities in the horn..16 top merchants that include Saudi tycoon fund Hargaysa University.. Keep that in mind. Mr jaahil Kayse.

  11. Kayse says:

    Only Kayse knows how to tell the separatists the truth, deep down I know they agree with what I said. All you have to do is Google it and see their own words.

    Quality separatists not 10000 useless one-man "universities" occupying residential homes with half with no chairs.

  12. Kayse says:

    This is their own reviews:

    Jaamacadaha Tirada badan ee Somaliland ku yaala oo noqday goobo ganacsi

    Waxaa mudooyinkii ugu dambeeyay soo kordhayay Jaamacadaha laga hirgalinayo Somaliland. Jaamacadahaa oo noqday goobo ganacsi , waxaa inta badani jaamacadahani yihiin faracyo ama laamo laga soo qaatay wadamo kale, Dhibaatooyinka ka dhashay waxaa ka mid ah:-

    1- iyaga oo qaata arday aan ka soo bixin dugsi sare
    Arrintan ayaa yaxyax ku abuurtay bulshada, iyada oo qofka doonaya inuu jaamacad galo ay fududahay sida uu u galo , waxa kaliya ee ka xigaana ay tahay lacagtiisa.

    2- Macalimiinta Jaamacadahaa wax ka dhiga oo aan intooda badani dhaafsiisnayn Shahaadada koowaad ee Bachelor , iyada oo sharciga Caalamku cadaynayo in qof Bachelor sitaa aanuu wax u dhigi Karin qof kale oo Bachelor dhiganaya.

    3- Macalimiinta Jaamacadaha ka soo baxay oo intooda badani part-time ah, taa oo noqotay mid macalinku aanuu ahmiyad wayn siinayn wixii uu ardayda u dhigayay, noqotayna goob laga helayo dakhli oo qofku ku xisaabtamaya la iskuna dhiiri galiyo, ‘maxaad jaamcadaha xiisad uuga tuuran wayday, kolay lacag baa kaa soo gali doonta ee’

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