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Last Updated: Thursday, 25 November, 2004, 13:38 GMT
Life in Somalia: Idi's story
Eight residents of Somalia's capital, Mogadishu, tell us what the new government's priorities should be and how they have survived 13 years of anarchy.

Scrap metal worker

Khat dealer


Bus driver




Muktar "Idi" Ramadan

I can't wait for Somalia to have a government again.

Life is really hard for musicians at the moment.

We need protection, as we are not related to the major clans. Whenever I leave my home, I cannot be sure that I will make it back alive.

All the warlords still want to be president and we cannot have 15 presidents in Somalia
All the nightclubs in Mogadishu have closed. They have become refugee camps.

All we do now is sing at wedding parties, maybe once a month.

We are afraid, there are gunmen everywhere. If we had a concert, the militias might come and rob us and the audience - but they would make sure they enjoyed the music first.

The wedding parties are big, spectacular affairs, you wouldn't think they were in a country without a government.

But it's only the people who are members of the big armed clans who can have these parties.

Other people get married but they cannot have big parties in case they are attacked and robbed. They just get married in secret.

Piracy is another big problem for Somalia's musicians.

You can get illegal copies of my tapes everywhere in Somalia, and I don't earn any money from it.

Even if I want a copy, I would have to buy it.

I hope this government will restore peace and hope to Somalia but I don't have faith that they will.

It will be very hard to collect all the weapons from the militias.

I cannot see all the different warlords working together. They are not going to fulfil their promises to disarm their militia.

They all still want to be president and we cannot have 15 presidents in Somalia.


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