November 20, 2012

Back from Mogadishu - The Fastest Changing City in the World

New Construction Underway in Mogadishu, Somalia. Sutika Sipus 2012.
I always intend to write at least twice a week, but lately there has been a delay as I've been on the road.  I recently returned from Mogadishu and am amazed by how quickly the city is changing.  Although journalists continue to tout it as the worlds most dangerous city, I believe it is time to shift the title into something about how the city of Mogadishu has undergone the most radical transformation in the world.  It hasn't even been one year since my first visit, and yet many parts of the city are unrecognizable today.  And new construction is everywhere!  Hotels, travel agents, import/export businesses and even a new petrol station are up and operating.

In the past, the only way to secure fuel for automobiles was through sharing containers of poor quality fuel, now today a modern petrol station is under construction with modern functioning pumps.  A mall constructed in the 1970s was recently renovated, and the Somali National Theatre, the site of a violent suicide bombing last spring has been restored again into a magnificent state.  Certainly problems within the city remain however if the pace continues and can expand throughout the region, the problems have a limited future of influence.

Somali National Theatre. Sutika Sipus. March 2012
Somali National Theatre. Sutika Sipus. November 2012.


  1. Sadly, it's clear that Somalia has a bad reputation due to it's situation.

    Amidst all the achievements that Somalia has made in the last year alone (having a proper government, retaking and pacifying main cities with help, piracy down to 10% the level it was in 2010), it still suffers from a stigma. It's sad, but you hear press saying "we don't want another Somalia".

  2. I love how Somalis themselves are so motivated and entrepreneurial, almost every business success you hear about in Mogadishu is from a Somali, either diaspora or local. (and in mobile communications and Realestate, they seem to really be thriving)

    I can only imagine how far the country could go if it only had complete peace.