Posted on July 19, 2019

Hodan Nalayeh: Somalia’s ‘Inspirational’ Journalist, Killed in Kismayo

BBC, July 13, 2019

While most coverage of Somalia focused on civil war, militancy and famine, Hodan Nalayeh made it her mission to show another side to the country — its beauty and that of its people.

Her desire to focus on the positive and ultimately inspire young Somalis around the world to help rebuild the country made her famous — and her death in Friday’s attack on a hotel in the southern city of Kismayo has prompted an outpouring of grief.

She and her husband Farid Juma Suleiman were among the 26 people killed as gunmen stormed the Asasey Hotel, where regional politicians and clan elders were discussing a forthcoming regional election.

In a Facebook post, her family said Nalayeh — a 43-year-old mother-of-two who was pregnant at the time of her death — had “spent her life devoted to serving the Somali people and reporting on positive, uplifting stories” in order to “spread light and love to the Somali world”.


Nalayeh had hoped that her work would encourage young Somalis abroad to move to the country and help make a difference, Jimale said.


Her death at the hands of militants would only amplify her message, he said.