20 students from Somaliland will study in Taiwan thanks to a scholarship provided by the Taiwanese government
By Abdirisak Itaqile
In a glitzy ceremony held in Grand Haddi hotel on Tuesday, the first anniversary of the establishment of Taiwan Representative Office in the Republic of Somaliland and 2021 Taiwan Scholarships Award ceremony was graced by high ranking Somaliland government officials including the Vice President Abdirahman Abdilahi Ismail Saylici.
Taiwan opened its Representative office in Somaliland capital Hargeisa in August last year and marked the first anniversary by awarding Taiwan scholarships certificates to 20 students to study in Taiwanese Universities.
His Excellency Ambassador Allen C. Lou, Representative of Taiwan Representative Office in the Republic of Somaliland said in his opening remarks ““On August 17, 2020, the Taiwan Representative Office was established in Hargeisa. This marked a milestone in relations between our two nations. Accordingly, our cooperation has deepened in many areas. We are pleased to have implemented numerous cooperation in areas that are fundamental to national development, such as agriculture, healthcare, ICT, energy, business, etc. We are confident that the mutually beneficial and friendly ties between Taiwan and Somaliland will be further deepened. ”
Ambassador Allen C. Lou, congratulated the recipients and highlighted the cooperation of Somaliland and Taiwan in the education sector.
“I would also like to highlight another important area of our cooperation that is education. Taiwan is helping Somaliland young talents building dreams through education as the USA did for Taiwan several decades ago. We believe that once the Somaliland young talents are equipped with big wings, the sky is their limits. In today’s celebrations, I am happy to see that 20 young talents have been awarded for the Taiwan Government Scholarships (Taiwan Scholarship and Taiwan ICDF Scholarship). As the African proverb says” If you educate a man you educate an individual, but if you educate a woman you educate a family (nation). I am also happy to see today there are four female young talents to be awarded Taiwan Scholarships to study in Taiwan. Most of them study medicine and medical management.”
The 20 scholarship recipients have been awarded scholarships respectively through the Taiwan ICDF Scholarship Program and the Taiwan Foreign Ministry Scholarship Program. The recipients are the first batch of Somaliland students that have been granted scholarships to study in Taiwan since the two countries established their official diplomatic relationship last year.
On Aug. 17, 2020, a new chapter in history was written. The opening of the #Taiwan Representative Office in #Somaliland showed what can be achieved when those who love freedom, democracy & justice stand united. Watch Minister Wu’s anniversary message & join in our celebrations!🔽 pic.twitter.com/uBpDu3ElZW
— 外交部 Ministry of Foreign Affairs, ROC (Taiwan) 🇹🇼 (@MOFA_Taiwan) August 17, 2021
In a pre-recorded video, Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu expressed hope that the recipients after enhancing their professional knowledge and skillsets in their respective academic fields, they will make great contribution to Somaliland.
“I am delighted to join in celebrating the first anniversary of the establishment Taiwan Representative office in the republic of Somaliland. In today’s celebration, the office is awarding certificates for the Taiwan scholarships. I am happy to see the 20 young people have been chosen for hard work and outstanding performance. I encourage the recipients to cherish this hard-earned opportunity and make great contribution to Somaliland after finishing studies in Taiwan. Somaliland will always be friends with Taiwan and Somaliland will always be in my heart, thank you.” Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said in the pre-recorded video.
Speaking at the ceremony, the Vice President of the Republic of Somaliland Abdirahman Abdilahi Ismail Saylici offered the recipients sound words of encouragement. VP Saylici also extended gratitude to the government and people of Taiwan, Representative of Taiwan Representative Office in the Republic of Somaliland His Excellency Ambassador Allen C. Lou, and Taiwan Representative Office staff for their “diligence, thoroughness, and overall commitment to this and every initiative” in which both countries are involved.
The government of Taiwan supports the Somaliland government in its efforts to advance democracy and freedom. Taiwan is to implement emergency and humanitarian aids, development cooperation, and mutual assistance, and mutual benefits cooperation to benefit both peoples.
Thirteen students: Abdirisak Ismail Qalinle, Bashir Hassan Daud, Umalkhair Jama Mohamoud, Mustafe Abdi Farah, Salma Ahmed Saed, Jibril Abdi Mead, Hamda Mowlid Ismail, Mustafe Ibrahim Farah, Abdirahman Hussein Muse, Muna Mohamud Musa, Abdirisak Ibrahim Farah, Mohamed Ibrahim Abdi and Hussein Mohamed Mahamud received the Taiwan Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) scholarship, while seven in the persons of Mohamed Adan Ali, Mohamed Abdalle Osman, Abdisamad Abiib Omer, Abdirashid Ahmed Mohamoud, Abdiaziz Ahmed Hashi, Abdirahman Ahmed Jama and Ahmed Yousuf Hassan were recipients of the International Cooperation Development Fund (ICDF) scholarship.
Of the 20 students, two will be pursuing PhD degrees, seventeen will be pursuing master’s degrees, while one person will pursue degrees at the bachelor’s level.
The awardees will be pursuing studies in healthcare, Tropical Agriculture, civil Engineering, Telecommunication Engineering, ICT, Food Science, Soil and Water Conservation, Human Resource Management, and Curatorial Studies among other areas in Bachelor’s, Masters’ and Ph.D. programs. The Awardees are set to leave the country at the end of this month after Taiwan allowed the entry of an estimated 13,000 foreign students ahead of the start of the new school year in September.
During the ceremony, the awardees presented certificates of appreciation to Ambassador Allen C. Lou on behalf of Taiwan Representative Office in the Republic of Somaliland, and Mr. Abdiqani Muse Hassan, the Head of Economic and Commercial Affairs of Republic of Somaliland Representative office in Taiwan on behalf of the office, In recognition of their valuable contributions in facilitating Taiwan Scholarships for Somaliland students & their role of providing guidance and necessary information throughout the process.
Also present at the first anniversary of the establishment of Taiwan Representative Office in the Republic of Somaliland and Taiwan Scholarships Award ceremony, which took place at Grand Haddi Hotel in Hargeisa on Tuesday, August 17, were the Vice President of the Republic of Somaliland Abdirahman Abdilahi Ismail Saylici, Minister of Health development Omer Abdilahi, Minister of Agriculture Ahmed Moumin Seed, Minister of National Planning Hassan Gafadhi, Mayor of Hargeisa Abdikarim Ahmed Moge, Chairman of Somaliland National Commission for Higher Education, representatives of political parties as well as family members of the scholarship awardees.
About the Author
Abdirisak Itaqile, is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Somaliland Monitor