29 January 2012

Somalia: Top Shabelle Officials Speak About Fantastic's Death

press release

London — It's with great sadness and demise that Shabelle Media Network has lost one of its best resource persons, a valuable friend, a man who was well-known for his journalistic professionalism and commitment, the director of Shabelle Media Network in Mogadishu Mr Hassan Osman Abdi 'Fantastic' who was murdered on Saturday evening around 6:30pm at his home in Wadajir district of Mogadishu.

The news of the director's murder shocked us all and left us with grime impact and grievance.

We are extremely shocked by this tragic murder and Shabelle Media Network will greatly miss Hassan Osman Abdi. While we struggle to hold our tears back and prove our resilient, we express our condolences and heartfelt sympathy to the wife, children and family that Mr Abdi has left behind and we hope for the family to overcome this difficulty time.

Abdi's death was a result of a barbaric crime, a hostile action against human dignity and human rights by a merciless group assailants armed with pistols who shot him at the entrance of his home in Nasteh neighborhood of Wadajir district in Mogadishu. Instantly after the shooting in which Mr. Abdi sustained serious injuries, he was rushed to Madina hospital for treatment of the life-threatening injuries but unfortunately he passed away at the hospital. Although the exact motives of the attackers' remain unclear, the nature of the attack reminds us the previous orchestrated killings in which two of previous Shabelle directors were murdered with the aim to silence our free media missions and force us to quit and desert our fundamental core values of promotion of freedom of speech, human rights and democratic ideals that empower humanity and preserve human dignity.

A father of three, Mr. Abdi was born in 1982 in Jilib of Lower Juba region in Somalia and joined Shabelle Media Network in early 2008 and worked in different capacities. Since October last year, he was head of Shabelle Media Network in Mogadishu. While working under threats and humiliation, Mr. Abdi proved true professionalism and managerial competences which assisted Shabelle to maintain its vision and deliver the mandated tasked of serving to the Somali people with impartial and unbiased media services.

Shabelle denounces this barbaric murder with strongest terms and calls for thoroughly and independent investigations that can lead to the identification of culprits and justice to be served. Shabelle also restates that Mogadishu is not any more a no man's land; the responsible authorities should act accordingly and help us prevail against the impunity for the perpetuators of such hideous crime and let the justice be delivered.

As a committed media organization that is guided by the values of freedom of expression, the right to exercise freedom of speech and dissemination of impartial, neutral and mainstream media services for the Somali people, Shabelle Media Network will not be threatened by these criminal acts and will not relinquish its commitment to freedom of speech, human rights and democratic ideals that prosper our nation and build sustainable platforms for peace and isolate violence and it's means to achieve gains.

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