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Last Updated: Thursday, 25 November, 2004, 13:36 GMT
Life in Somalia: Abdidir'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.

Mahamut:
Scrap metal worker

Nimo:
Khat dealer

Abdullahi:
Cattle-herder

Abdi:
Refugee
Abdidir:
Bus driver

Bashir:
Gunman

Halima:
Refugee

Idi:
Singer

Abdidir Ali Hashi

I am 22 years old. I am married but we don't have any children yet.

I drive this bus on a 30km route to Mogadishu. On the way, we go through six check-points run by different militias.
Abdidir Ali Hashi
I hope that education would be free again

At each one, I have to pay 50,000 shillings ($3). This covers the whole day.

I cannot do anything about it, if I had armed guards on my bus, there might be a gunfight and passengers would be killed.

Because of those fees, it's really hard to get by and I have to keep the fares for my passengers high.

I support the government - we need a government.

We can accept [President Abdullahi] Yusuf even though he is not from here but from northern Somalia.

We have a saying: "A man who marries your mother becomes your uncle."

This means that if we really want to, we can all live together again.

The first thing the government must do is to take down the checkpoints, disarm the militias and restore law and order.

I also hope that education would be free again.

Then I could go to school, get some qualifications and work in an office instead of driving this bus.





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