Somalia Male

Aged 30 | Born 1984

Full Kit

About the Speaker

"I am from the north of Somalia. The region called Sanaag. The city is called Erigabo. I grew up in a small village. Maybe 500 families live there, so we are all sort of related! I came to London in 2004. I speak four languages: Somali, Swedish, Dutch and English. I work part-time as a care assistant."

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This kit contains all the elements of a full Accent Kit


About Erigabo, Sanaag, Somalia

Somalia is a republic in NE Africa, on the Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden. The official languages of Somalia are both Arabic and Somali. It is bordered by Ethiopia to the west, Djibouti to the northwest, the Gulf of Aden to the north, the Indian Ocean to the east, and Kenya to the southwest. It has the longest coastline on Africa’s mainland, and consists of plateaus, plains, mountains and highlands.

Sanaag is an area in the Republic of Somaliland, a self-declared state. It has a long coastline facing the Gulf of Aden to the north.  A severe drought in the region in the early part of the 21st century caused an 80% or greater loss of livestock, though two good rainy seasons in 2004–2005 helped restore the area. Over a 15-year period of analysis, from 1988–2003, there was a 52% loss of forest and a 40% loss of grassland, and a 370% increase in bare land. Soil erosion due to weather and human activities and clearing of wood and brush for such uses as charcoal and fuel are issues leading to a degradation of the environment.

In recent history, the Sanaag region normally maintained a diverse economy, it producing livestock, frankincense, and leather for export, all while the region lacked basic infrastructure. However, after the outbreak of civil war the region’s economy collapsed Now the region only supports one main economy, livestock rearing. The Somali livestock ban imposed by Gulf countries, Sanaag’s largest market, virtually destroyed the economy in the region, reducing purchasing power and forcing pastoralists in the region to survive on subsistence activities.

The city of Erigabo is the capital and largest city of the Sanaag region, with a population of 114,846. It is several centuries old, noted for its numerous historical tombs, where various Somali clan patriarchs are buried, and the remains of an ancient juniper forest, running along the edge of an escarpment overlooking the Gulf of Aden. The escarpment rises to the highest point in Somaliland. Erigabo also has some of the mildest weather in Somaliland.